9 of the Best Dive Resorts in the Caribbean
Home to countless diving sites, the Caribbean has it all: from beautiful coral reefs to dramatic wreck sites to breathtaking drop-offs. Here are our top dive resort picks for your next Caribbean getaway
Castle Comfort Lodge, Dominica
The accommodation may be pretty basic, but the diving is certainly topnotch. Previous guests have been raving about the knowledgeable and efficient dive masters of the the in-house dive shop Dive Dominica. The team is never in a hurry, so you have enough time to take those macro shots, and tries to ensure that your every dive is a fantastic experience. Whale and dolphin watching and guided snorkelling trips are also available.
Blue Waters Inn, Tobago
If you’re looking to get in touch with nature, it doesn’t get much better than the Blue Waters resort which is located on a serene private beach and surrounded by lush greenery. The resort has been refurbished extensively recently and the two new dive boats are the pride and joy of the on-site dive operation with the area's best diving spots just minutes away. As for above-water activities, bird-watching is a must – Tobago has more than 200 bird species, plus the resort offers tours of Bird of Paradise Island.
True Blue Bay, Grenada
Beautiful landscape and colourful interior design are signature features of this environment-friendly resort in St George’s, Grenada. Apart from your usual dive packages, Aquanauts, the on-site dive shop, offers closed circuit rebreather (CCR) trials and certification courses and even organises ‘rebreather weeks’ exclusively for CCR divers. Travelling with non-divers? They can take yoga or cooking lessons, try tango and Latin dance, or slip on a mermaid tail for some mermaid swimming in the pool.
Sunset House, Grand Cayman
This resort ‘by divers, for divers’ should be on every diver’s Caribbean bucket list. Indulge in unlimited shore diving and pay a visit to the sunken mermaid statue on the house reef or spend your surface time in the natural sea pool. Sunset House is also home to renowned underwater photographer Cathy Church’s ‘Photo Centre’ where you can rent or buy underwater cameras and take private photography lessons with Cathy herself.
Cathy Church’s Photo Centre: http://www.cathychurch.com
Bruce Bowker’s Carib Inn, Bonaire
This small, no-frills dive resort in Bonaire always gets repeat customers – some of them have been visiting the Carib Inn regularly in the last 25 years – and for good reason. Divers simply feel at home here, with staff who are passionate about diving and eager to share their knowledge (including Bruce himself, who is repeatedly described in guest reviews as ‘hilarious’), and efficient operations that guarantee a hassle-free diving holiday. Bonus points: Excellent prices at the dive shop and a superb house reef.
Blackbird Caye Resort, Belize
An idyllic, secluded property on Belize’s Turneffe Atoll, Blackbird is a paradise for divers and non-divers alike. When you’re not in the water (or on the white sand beach), you’ll be spoilt with well-appointed rooms and delicious cuisine. The diving is world-class – don’t miss a trip to Belize’s diving mecca, the Blue Hole – and the reefs are exquisite. Apart from three daily boat dives, guided snorkelling trips are available, too.
Scuba Club Cozumel, Mexico
This dive friendly outfit in the buzzing resort of Cozumel offers all-inclusive packages with unlimited shore diving and two-tank morning boat dives (afternoon and evening dives can be arranged). Designed with divers in mind, the well-managed hotel has excellent dive masters and its own fleet of boats. The house reef is great for snorkelling and shallow diving whether in the morning or at night.
Small Hope Bay Lodge, Bahamas
The family-run resort in Andros, Small Hope offers a great atmosphere, as well as comfortable lodging and scrumptious food. The diving operations are excellent, with three daily dives and knowledgeable dive masters who provide as much or as little guidance as you’d like. In-house videographers document all dives, and you can buy a copy of the DVD or just watch the videos being played every night at the games room.
Bohio Dive Resort, Turks and Caicos
Stay at this Cockburn Town beachfront resort and you’re in for an unforgettable treat. The crystal clear waters surrounding the property boast an average visibility of up to 30m deep, and the breathtaking diving sites – Grand Turk’s wall, for example, drops dramatically from seven metres to 1,230m – are within a 10-minute boat ride from Bohio. Tip: check cruise ship schedules with staff, as the beach gets overrun with tourists when cruises stop by.