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Dive Review of Horizon Divers/Marriott Key Largo in
The Continental USA/Florida Keys

Horizon Divers/Marriott Key Largo, Feb, 2009,

by George T Felt, NH, United States ( 1 report). Report 4689.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 51-100 dives
Where else diving Curacao, USVI and BVI, Bermuda
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas choppy, no currents
Water Temp 70 to 72 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 40 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Back on boat in 60 minutes or 500 PSI
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 2 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics N/A

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

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments A dedicated rinse bucket was provided for cameras only. Captain handed camera to divers in the water and lifted it out on exit.

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments I stayed at the Marriott and took a refresher course with one of their staff. This was a very good experience, and the teaching and service there is excellent. However, there was nobody else at the Marrriott who wanted to dive (all week), so they matched me up with Horizon. I have dived with Horizon before, and was reminded of their good location, solid boats, and excellent staff. I eventually found that several guests at the Marriott were using other dive operators because the resort is located a bit farther away from the dive sites than other operations (so you end up with a longer boat ride - not necessarily a deal breaker, but that's the deal). Excellent pre-dive briefings from Horizon. You are on your own (with your buddy) as they do not routinely put a divemaster in the water unless you want to hire a guide. Roll calls were always well done. You are required to hire a guide if you want to dive a wreck and do not have Advanced Diver training or have not been in the water in the last year. This seems reasonable to me - but means you have to talk to them in advance to make these arrangements and allocate funds to take care of business. I would certainly recommend Horizon (or "It's a Dive" if you are staying at the Marriott and don't mind a little more boat time). Oh yeah - we saw Goliath Grouper that were so big you could not put our arms around their mid section (not that you want to try) - the consensus on their approximate dimensions was 6+ feet long and around 400 pounds. Scary big. Also saw a pair of really big Cobia that were mistaken for sharks at first glance. Generally healthy coral (but some sites were in decline). This area is a good value and has surprisingly high quality diving for an easy-access stateside vacation - I recommend it. Marriott is good for nondiving spouses, but a bit steep on price and less expensive accomodations are locally available if you focused exclusively on the diving (consider the Holiday Inn or the Ramada - decent but undistiguished places to crash with excellent location but not on the water in spite of what they tell you - a canal is not "the water" in my view).
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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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