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Curacao Trip Report Lagun and Westpunt

Discussion in 'Curaçao' started by tkaelin, Jan 31, 2019.

  1. tkaelin

    tkaelin Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: CT
    1,557
    752
    113
    Cas Abou/Bdiving No. They have a fill truck come periodically.
    Dive shop on the beach at Lagun Yes.
    Gowest Yes.

    As I think I mentioned elsewhere, you get more than a tank when you rent a tank from the op on the beach. Usually have rinse tanks, drying racks showers, local info and great tips for the dive and a secure safe place to leave your stuff.
     
  2. ReefHound

    ReefHound PADI Pro

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Houston, TX
    5,052
    1,077
    113
    As I was reading your post I was thinking "honor system" and surprised they would allow that. I thought I had read the tanks at All West are in a locked room and you don't get a key unless you've paid the unlimited package? My gf is the same way, though usually up for 3 sometimes done after 2.
     
  3. ReefHound

    ReefHound PADI Pro

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Houston, TX
    5,052
    1,077
    113
    I get the value for most, just doesn't apply for me. I'd rather just git her done, rinse and shower back at the apartment. Are you saying the amenities can only be used by those paying them for something? What if it's drinks not tanks? How do Dive Bus divers pay? They should probably cover the amenities with a parking fee. That would capture all users and probably solve the theft issue to boot.

    So you didn't mind the constant logistical hassle of carrying around c-cards and filling out papers and leaving deposits for tanks at each site? Not to mention weights, constantly putting them in and taking them out. I typically put weights in my pockets at start of trip, remove them at end of trip.

    I found in Bonaire the easiest way to get in 4 dives is to not screw around and make every one hour dive take two hours or more with logistical delays.
     
  4. tkaelin

    tkaelin Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: CT
    1,557
    752
    113
    Note that there is no nitrox at Allwest which is a negative. The allure of being at Allwest on the water with a nice house reef and tanks there is to get in a lot of diving. Only air available and if you are doing 4-5 dives a day you probably want nitrox. You can get a nitrox package staying at Allwest but you have to get your tanks over at Gowest. I had no interest in lugging 4-5 nitrox tanks a day over from Gowest to Allwest. Once you see all the stairs you will understand. I asked them about this in Jan and again the answer was lack of trust. If they had nitrox tanks available at AW they are concerned that air package folks would grab them. I think the real answer is that they don't want to lug the tanks over either.
     
  5. ReefHound

    ReefHound PADI Pro

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Houston, TX
    5,052
    1,077
    113
    If no one is there, what's to stop a non-diver from grabbing tanks? Seems like there's no getting around the trust issue. If staying at All West I wouldn't expect to dive more than one a day there if that. An occasional air tank is no big deal.

    You've addressed the issue of cost well, aside from double paying if a package deal already includes it. But once again, what about all the logistical issues of renting tanks from different providers at every site? Are you the type like me that likes to not waste time and get it done efficiently, or the type that doesn't mind dragging an hour dive into two hours?
     
  6. tkaelin

    tkaelin Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: CT
    1,557
    752
    113
    I am the impatient get out of my way I came here to dive diver. On our first trip to Allwest we arrived New Years Eve. I wanted to dive that evening as soon as we checked in but it was too late and we were too tired. When planning the trip, I found out that the Gowest dive shop would be opening late the next morning being New Years Day. No way that would work for me. I arranged through Andreas (wonderful former employee) to have all the rental gear, weights and belts in our rooms (we were a group of 6) when we checked in so we could hit the water first thing New Years Day. I usually start my mornings with a sunrise dive if that gives you any further indication.

    As far as the logistics, my plan if I am going to a beach and using a beach op is to get there first thing in the morning. If they open at 9:00 we are there at nine. My times at Bdiving at Cas Abou we were the first ones there and sign up c-cards took minutes. They now do sign ups on an iPad with pictures of your c-cards and stated that once you have done this you will never have to do it again. They plan on keeping the records and just look you up.

    When I rented tanks down on Lagun, again first thing in the morning and it took maybe 10 minutes. Gowest you can do the waiver and c-cards in advance but even if you don't it only took us a couple minutes.

    When I was staying at Nos Krusero which is across the street, I made a point of getting to the shop at 8 am when they opened. I was in the water by 8:15, before the two tank am boat folks filled the area. I could get in three dives before the morning two tank boat returned.

    I think you will find it pretty easy.
     
    drrich2 and ReefHound like this.
  7. AdivingBel

    AdivingBel Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Missouri
    1,513
    1,348
    113
    On our last trip we worked with Dive'n @ Rancho El Sobrino for tanks. We stay at Marazul so it's right next door. They only did unlimited, but they would let us keep track of what days we used their tanks and settle up at the end of our two week trip. We then planned our diving where we would dive selected days at sites with services (rent tanks onsite) and/or boat dive, and days where we dived the house reef (Marazul's house reef is excellent) and/or sites without services (many more of the latter days). It worked out very well. Dive'n gave us the combination to their tank/drying room so we had 24/7 access including rinse tanks. We also had a rinse tank at Marazul and places to dry gear at our condo, so we had the best of both worlds. We rinsed and stashed our gear at whichever was the most convenient for the next day's diving. Dive'n only had air (no nitrox), but since we were setting our own schedule and dive profiles it wasn't an issue for us. There was always another dive. We did dive nitrox on the couple of boat dives we did with GoWest. You don't want to cut your drift dives short at Watamula. :)

    We enjoy both Bonaire & Curacao, but you can drive yourself crazy trying to make one like the other (I've watched many SBer's try to do it :)). Other than they both have shore diving and at many sites you "swim out to the drop," the islands and their dive infrastructures as well as the experience are very different. All IMHO, YMMV.
     
    Gary_D, Damselfish and tkaelin like this.
  8. ReefHound

    ReefHound PADI Pro

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Houston, TX
    5,052
    1,077
    113
    Thanks. I was just worried that, like many "island" destinations, an opening time of 9am meant "sometime before noon, depending on when we woke up".

    Is the tank storage at All West a key lock or combo or open-access?
     
  9. tkaelin

    tkaelin Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: CT
    1,557
    752
    113
    Was key last time we were there. On the water side entrance only guest have access and I usually just left the key somewhat hidden nearby when out on a dive.
     
  10. drrich2

    drrich2 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Southwestern Kentucky
    7,512
    4,516
    113
    Informative discussion. If I make it out to Curacao again, to try the west coast diving, I'd likely plan to stay at All West Apartments or Nos Krusero, plan a 2-tank boat trip to hit Watamula since it's praised so often, and otherwise focus on shore diving.

    Like Reefhound, I'd rather not pay ala cart to rent tanks when I've got an unlimited tank package. It'd be nice to take a list of west coast dive sites, broken down into those with onsite tank rental & those without, and take at least one day to load the vehicle and go do some 'without' sites.

    That sounds worth digging into a bit. If someone bases out west, and plans to near solely shore dive the west coast of Curacao desiring 4 - 5 dives/day (#5 perhaps a night dive on the house reef), which is a popular Bonaire pattern, do you anticipate any problems with doing that?

    Richard.
     

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