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Dive Review of utopia dive/utopia village in

utopia dive/utopia village, May, 2011,

by W Glen Kitchens, NM, US (Contributor Contributor 18 reports with 4 Helpful votes). Report 6050.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling 3 stars
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments The 737 stops at Roatan & so do most of the divers. From here it's a puddlejumper for the 20-minute flight to Utila at Sandy Bay. Here you board a boat for the 15-minute ride to Utopia's dock. Boats are the only means of transportation to the resort.

Utopia Village overlooks the ocean from the southwest part of the island. On a clear day the mountains on the mainland of Honduras stand out to the west. Utila is about 17 miles from the port city of La Ceiba on the Honduran coast. Prevailing westerly winds blow most of the time, which tend to keep the sand flies (no-see-ums) at bay. However when the wind stops they come out in force, so bring plenty of repellent. The oceanfront is a very nice white sand beach but the entry to the water is rather rocky w/ rough coral so footwear is a must for safety. Guided night dives take place from the beach.

The rooms are large & well-furnished w/ air conditioning. Like most islands fresh water is precious, so conservation is the norm w/ most of the fresh water being collected in cisterns from the periodic rainfall. The food is varied & very good & the Salva Vida is always cold at the oceanfront bar.

The managing owners (American) live on-site & pitch in w/ the staff to be sure the guests have a pleasant visit. The diveboat staff & the divemasters are very professional & attentive to all divers, regardless of experience level. The boat carries a separate fresh water container for UW cameras.

Aside from the seclusion, a good reason to visit Utila is for the opportunity to see & swim w/ whale sharks. My group did not get lucky on this trip, but did on a previous trip. Otherwise the diving is typical of the Bay Islands w/ little current, warm water & plenty of smaller reef fish & healthy coral. Did not see any large fish. Just pleasant, easy diving. The staff will also set up fishing charters for anyone interested in trying their hand at bonefish.

The resort is small enough that the owners know everyone by name after the first day or so. Free wi-fi is also available. My group's biggest bill at the end of our visit was for the bar (not unusual for us) & there's not much else to spend money on at the resort.

To do a little shopping or just to wander the streets w/ the expats & locals it's worth a boat ride back to Sandy Bay to spend a day & take in the sights & sounds. Mexico's Yucatan still seems the least expensive travel location from the U.S. but this visit to Utila was a nice change for a very reasonable price.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving numerous locations in carribean & pacific;
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas choppy, no currents
Water Temp 81-83°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 75-90 Ft/ 23-27 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions depth limits;
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments boat crew was helpful & cautious w/ UW equipment;
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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