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Picking a vacation destination based on diving(Mexico/Jamaica/Antigua)...I need help!

Discussion in 'General Travel & Vacation Discussions' started by jensrib, Jan 22, 2009.

  1. jensrib

    jensrib New

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Upstate NY
    I am looking to book a vacation in late April or early May - I have found some good deals in a few spots, and I would love some feedback on the diving in these areas:

    Mexico - Puerto Vallarta



    Bonaire - particularly feedback on the Buddy Dive Resort (what is included, how is the diving, etc)

    Any info would be great, thank you!
  2. robint

    robint Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Albuquerque, NM

    I think if you do a bit of research here on SB, read some reviews and trip reports, you will find that only Bonaire is a true DIVING destination.
    Information about PV in the Mexico Forum.
    Information about Antigua and Jamaica in the Caribbean Forum.
    Information about Bonaire in the ABC Forum.

    Bonaire is world class diving and in most rating polls with magazines, the best diving in the Caribbean. The other 3 places are just vacation destinations which offer some diving. There is just no comparison with Bonaire. :D

  3. Michael Schlink

    Michael Schlink Instructor, Scuba

    Been to 3 of 4, robint is correct, Jam can be a lot of fun but the diving isn't why you go to Jam. The western coast of Mex. isn't going to compare to Cozumel so if you're looking for more topside Bonaire would be my last choice but if diving is the plan than go to Bonaire and you'll end up like alot of us and just keep going back. There are plenty of restaurants to go to, a little shopping, but some of the best diving in the Carib.
    I've been to Buddy Dive several times but since it was sold, and they aquired Lions, and Corina left the dive operation it just wasn't the same, I'd look at other options.
  4. driftwood

    driftwood Contributor

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Central Texas
    The diving on Bonaire is fantastic. If the only reef on the island was Buddy's House reef, the trip would be worth it. Stayed at Buddy's twice and loved the diving but always had trouble either with trucks and/or the rooms. If you stay at Buddy's, I would stay away from the Lion's Dive side of the resort. If you look at Buddy's site, you will notice that there are no photos of the rooms. There is a reason for that. The Lion's side is not nearly as nice and is quite frankly pretty shabby. I agree with Micheal, topside Bonaire is pretty dead.
  5. jc60625

    jc60625 Registered

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Chicago, IL
    diving on mexico's west coast can be nice but not that time of year... and it never will compare to cozumel. I've done Cabo twice, PV, and Coz. I would only consider PV in late summer or early fall and even then the diving in the sea of cortez will be better.
  6. tomdiddle

    tomdiddle Registered

    If you can make early April there is a GREAT DEAL to the Grand Bahamas at:UNEXSO International Legends of Diving - Scuba Diving Sponsored by Portage Quarry

    The prices are toward the bottom but are super cheap. I have been there at this location twice in 6 months and I will not miss this trip in April. Sharks , Wrecks, Reefs, Dolphins... you name it , they have it. I copied just part of the page for you: 7-Day Rates Below include:


    Choice of Standard, Superior and Deluxe Room Accommodations

    Roundtrip Airport Transfers

    Continental Breakfast Daily

    Welcome Reception and Gala Dinner

    Educational Seminars

    An Exciting Week of Legendary Shark, Wreck and Reef Dives (plus scheduled non diver activities)

    Tanks and weight belt

    12% Bahamas Government Tax

    7-Day Diver Itinerary
    Mar 30 Mar 31 April 1 April 2 April 3 April 4 April 5 April 6

    No Dives

    2 tank AM
    (Plate Reef &
    Reef Dive)

    1 tank
    PM Dive

    (Papa Doc Wreck)

    2 tank AM
    (Gales Grotto &
    Reef Dive)

    1 tank
    PM Dive (Ben's Blue Hole)

    2 tank AM
    (The Cave's & Reef Dive)

    1 tank Night
    (Papa Doc Wreck)

    2 tank AM
    (Theo's Wreck &
    Reef Dive)

    1 tank
    PM Dive
    (Cap's Choice)

    2 tank – AM
    (Sea Star Wreck & Reef Dives)

    1 tank
    PM Dive
    (Shark Dive)

    2 tank – AM
    (Rose Garden & Reef Dives)

    No Dives

    7-Day Single Diver Rate
    Standard Superior
    $1,899 $1,999

    7-Day Diver Double Rate
    Standard Superior
    $1,399 $1,499
  7. herman

    herman Divemaster

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Raleigh,North Carolina
    Hey Tom, are you vintage diving or just going? I know there are several off the board who are going, including myself, all of which are going vintage. Looks like we need to have a SB meeting as well.
  8. vladimir

    vladimir Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Robin pegged it when she said
    There's no way to sugar-coat it: the diving in Jamaica sucks. Sure, it's better than the diving in NY, but it sucks compared to a bona fide dive destination. In my experience, diving at non-diving destinations just leads to disappointment. I won't lug my gear for it.
  9. tomdiddle

    tomdiddle Registered

    No I am not planning on diving vintage although I do back here at home sometimes. I may be on the boat with Bryan Pennington and his group to take some pictures and video. I have not decided yet what i will do. As one of the organizers I will have alot to keep me busy, however making sure everyone is accommodated and happy is first priority. So much diving and so little time. I am going down on the 27th to make sure everyone is taken care of. Are you planning on going? You can book through the website at International Legends of Diving - Scuba Diving Sponsored by Portage Quarry however you could save the additional fee by sending reservation information to my wife. As you can see the package is very good and the price is low. If you watch Spirit air you can get some great rates. They had round trip from Ft. Lauderdale for $150 including the taxes. We have diviner and non-diver rates for different lengths of stay.
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2009

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