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Woo Hoo! Finally going to Cozumel!

Discussion in 'Cozumel' started by KristenK, Feb 27, 2021.

  1. Blues Runner

    Blues Runner ScubaBoard Supporter ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Jacksonville, FL
    131
    215
    I used Pro Dive out of the Allegro (Occidental's next door neighbor) several years ago. Professional and safety conscious. Convenient to use the on site operator when they are solid.

    Enjoy your trip and the special time with your family!
     
    KristenK likes this.
  2. cobra269

    cobra269 Contributor

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: AL
    540
    461
    Do your research on dives ops. Everyone has their favorite and cheers for them.

    If taking a day off from diving you might want to check out sailing on Tucan. Done twice and enjoyed it each time.

    Cozumel Sailing
     
    KristenK likes this.
  3. -JD-

    -JD- Eclecticist ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Greater Philadelphia, PA
    1,028
    693
    We stayed at the Occidental 2 years ago at Christmas and dove with ProDive who has an on-site shop. 6 Days, 5 nights, arrived on XMAS day.

    The occidental was very clean and well appointed and had sufficient quality and variety of food for the length of our stay between the main buffet and the ala-carte restuarants. Being able to walk up and grab a drink at the various bars is nice if you imbibe. The beach and pool were nice. The evening entertainment was not really our thing,but that is a very personal thing.

    We did most of the paperwork/cards/medforms and put together a dive package in advance all via phone and email. Nothing but good things to to say about the patient, advance coordination. The occidental has an on-site location right at the base of the dock with rental equipment (we had all of our own so I can't comment on condition.)

    They threw in a pool-refresher for my (then 14) dive-ambivalent son and due to the boat makeup gave us a private "DM" for our 2-tank trip. Our DM was the chief instructor for (at least) the Occidental. He was great with my son. He suggested doing PPB for my son, and my son was happy to do the dive work, but wanted no part of doing the bookwork on vacation. I offered to pay for the private instruction time, sans the book/card fees but was (to me) surprisingly, flatly, disappointingly refused by the dive coordinator. That kind of soured my son and he elected to stay on land.

    With family time and the limited time, I only got one other 2-tank trip and and a night dive.

    The 2-Tank trip was nice except for an insta-buddy who flitted around all over the place and forced me to chase and burn through my air. On the second dive I took a keep-her-in-sight and no more than 20ish seconds away at full speed. I dive with a self-reliant mindset (most of my dives are in a quarry where visibility can frequently result in buddy separation unless you are in immediate contact and always dive with a redundant airsource (19cuft pony on that trip which ProDive filled for free overnight before our first dive), but I take my responsibility as a buddy very seriously.
    Dive times were effectively air-limited with Al80s. The DM would shoot a bag and send buddy-teams up for pickup as they aired-out.

    The night dive (my first) was an awesome, but somewhat unsettling experience. It was amazing being in that environment at night. The unsettling part was that our boat had 2 groups of 8 with a DM for each group. The group was your "buddy", but the group tended to fan out in the drift to a point where, while you could see where each diver was, but not realistically identify them or if one was in distress. As our group was "parked" examining the creatures, the other group drifted right into and eventually through our group. I was left clueless as to which group was which as they separated since identifying the DM at any distance was impossible, but I guessed right, stayed parked, and ended up with my group. All-told, not so much a personal safety fear for me due to my redundant airsource and experience with multiple low-viz separations, but if that intermixing resulted with the group-structure changing in number, I would expect (hope) that that would result in an immediate cessation of the dive and lost-diver search by the DM. I am now a much more experienced night diver, with my night class completed, and subsequently having played clean-up/sweeper/safety-diver for a couple of night classes in < 5ft viz, so would be far less freaked by, and better prepared to manage a clear-water experience like I had.

    Note: The ProDive boat goes back to the Allegro pier during the SI on 2-tank trips to exchange tanks.

    If I were to go back and stay at the Occidental, I would probably dive a bit with ProDive for the convenience, but would be eager to give Aldora a try for the better bottom time.
     
    KristenK likes this.
  4. DandyDon

    DandyDon Old men ought to be explorers ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: One kilometer high on the Texas Central Plains
    50,471
    5,582
    If you have never toured Mayan ruins, the on-island site is interesting. It pales in comparison to the major sites on the peninsula, but it's a good introduction. Backpacks with vacuum bottles of water are always a good idea when leaving town, and don't even think about going without a can of DEET spray most of the year. Negotiate a price for round-trip travel with a taxi. Don't be shy about offering less than asked.
     
  5. deepsea21

    deepsea21 Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Virginia Beach, VA USA
    1,323
    1,157
    I personally prefer to stay in town but a friend of mine who has been diving Coz for 30 years ot so (I've only been divining coz for about 20 years now) loves staying at the Occidental. It has become his home away from home for Coz dive trips. He and his family stay there and have always done their diving with Dive With Martin. DWM picks them up at the dock there and delivers them back. Don't feel you need to dive with the onsite dive op ProDive. Also, DWM offers free grear if you don't own your own or don't want to travel with it on this trip. DWM resides among the top 10 best of Coz here. ProDive has never made that list.
     
    gopbroek likes this.
  6. Rob9876

    Rob9876 Contributor

    359
    182
    I agree that the Mayan ruins at San Gervasio are worth a visit -- not as big as Coba, Chichen Itza, etc., but still an interesting Mayan town with a good number of ruins. I will say that the El Cedral ruin in the southern part of the island is only about as big as a 2-car garage and is surrounded by tourist trap vendors selling things at prices that are generally higher than in town -- so I would avoid that.
     
  7. cozcharlie

    cozcharlie Contributor

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Cozumel, MX and Houston TX area
    399
    622
    Dan & Karen (the owners of Cozumel Sailing ) are nice people. I have been fishing with them on a mutual friends boat a few times , but I have never actually been out on their boat myself. A friend who used to have a B&B sent a lot of customers their way over the years and they always used to come back happy.

    People used to like the chocolate factory tour also , but I haven’t heard much about that in a while (though not like i have been around many people lately ).
     
  8. scorpiofish

    scorpiofish Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives: 1,000 - 2,499
    Location: Dallas
    420
    83
    Check out Liquid Blue Divers

    liquidbluedivers.com

    We have been diving Cozumel for thirty years and have dived with many ops. There are plenty of good ops, but this is who we dive with now and for the past 7 years. Small fast boat. Concierge service, snacks and towels on SI. Steel tanks, 100cf or 120cf for long bottom times and very little lead needed. Steve and Kami will also offer plenty of advice and help with any of your non-diving needs.
     
    jonhall and Redfoot like this.
  9. deepsea21

    deepsea21 Regular of the Pub

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Virginia Beach, VA USA
    1,323
    1,157
    Everyone has their preferred dive ops for everyone's own reasons. Here is a list of the pre-covid December 2019 Roll Call that may give you an idea of what dive ops some people like. You'll notice that several people who stayed at the southern AI's use the on-site operator, Prodive. So, I dont' think anyone here is going to say it's a bad dive op. It's just not one that most people would use who stay elsewhere.

    Tamra Moorman........Nov 28 - Dec 8.........Allegro.....................Prodive
    umhlangan.................Nov 30 - Dec 7........Allegro......................Prodive
    MMM..........................Dec1 - Spring '20.....Su Casa..................Living Underwater
    Jbjclj..........................Dec 1 - Dec 7..........Villa las Anclas.........Tres Pelicanos
    V&J…………….....……..Dec 1 - Dec 14……Villa Las Anclas…....Tres Pelicanos
    Tiger 1974………….. Dec 4 – Dec 14………………………….......ScubaLuis
    Feney......................Dec 4 - Dec 14...........Coz Palace...............Living Underwater
    Mike Klieb..................Dec 7 - Dec 11...........................................Island Divers
    Deepsea21………….Dec 8 – Dec 25……Casa Mexicana.…......Tres Pelicanos
    Peppolalli..................Dec 11 - Dec 18.......Casa del Mar.......Scuba Shack
    Hoosierdivebuddy......Dec 11 – Dec 23…..El Cantil………….....Dive Op Undecided
    Chain Diver……….…Dec 13 – Dec 20….Casa Mexicana….......Tres Pelicanos
    Lowall......................Dec 14 - Dec 22........Cantamar...................Aldora
    Keesmon………...……Dec 14 – Dec 18…..Casa Caribe…...…....Tres Pelicanos
    Knucklebusted……...Dec 14 – Dec 21…..Iberostar……............Dressel or DWM
    Flyboy08…………..….Dec 14 - Dec 22........Grand Occidental.....Prodive
    sbk12rs.......................Dec 15 - Dec 22........Grand Occidental.....Prodive
    Rob9876...................Dec 20 - Dec 27......Peninsula.....................Tres Pelicanos
    ESLionHunter...........Dec20 - Jan 3..........Costa Del Sol...............Tres Pelicanos
    Mikeycanuk………....Dec 20 – Jan 3……………......………...………..Aldora
    AZ Tinman………….....Dec 27 – Jan 3...…..Coral Princess…......Tres Pelicanos
    turtlegurl.....................Dec 28 - Jan 4 ...........Allegro.......................Prodive

    Here is the last "top 10" list that was put together here a few years ago in alphabetical order that came about after 100 posts or something. Note that Prodive didn't make this list. You really can't go wrong with any of these.

    Aldora
    Blue Angel
    Blue Magic
    Blue XT Sea
    Bottom Time Divers
    Dive with Allison
    Dive with Martin
    Liquid Blue
    Living Underwater
    Tres Pelicanos
     
    delacrue96 likes this.
  10. DandyDon

    DandyDon Old men ought to be explorers ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: One kilometer high on the Texas Central Plains
    50,471
    5,582
    Ok, that is really out of date. Ops change quickly in various ways. I am sure that Salty Endeavors would make that poll today.
     
    jonhall likes this.

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