As passionate divers, we did not want to miss exploring the underwater world of the Bahamas with our own eyes. So we booked a dive on Long Island.
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Things to know about diving in the Bahamas
With unique shipwrecks, stunning cliffs, relatively healthy coral reefs and fascinating shark encounters, diving in the Bahamas is one of the best in the Caribbean. On our last vacations in the Caribbean, we could already explore some beautiful dive sites, for example in Curacao, Bonaire, Aruba, Barbados, Grenada, St. Kitts and St. Lucia.
Actually we wanted to dive in the Bahamas with tiger sharks and hammerhead sharks! We have read reports about the dives many times in our diving magazine and on the Internet, so this would have irritated us very much. From the Bahamian island of Bimini this would have worked very well, but unfortunately we could not accommodate this in our route, because the ferry from Miami only runs very irregularly to Bimini. It’s a pity, but that’s how we just pick up the experience if we come back to Miami.
But just search Google for the “Tiger shark Emma” or watch this fascinating video 🙂
Diving on Long Island
Since the island of Long Island in the Bahamas is not yet so far developed for tourism, there are also no big diving centers here. The only two hotels that offer diving trips are Stella Maris Resort and Cape Santa Maria Beach Resort. Since we stayed at the Stella Maris Resort anyway, we booked our diving trip about this. This was also relatively possible without any problems, but also very unusual, because we did not have to show a diving card or a logbook, let alone sign documents that we are diving at our own risk. This is actually common in certified diving schools and also important, so that the diving schools are secured in case something happens.
Jill Smith, the owner of Stella Maris Resort, called Dive Master Delbert Smith and asked him if he had time for us. 100 USD should cost each dive per person including equipment. Diving on Long Island is not a cheap pleasure 😉 Originally we wanted to take a diving trip to Shark Reef to see as many sharks as possible. Unfortunately, this was not possible because the conditions on the day were not so good.
We were able to select the equipment directly in the hotel according to our required sizes. The selection here is somewhat limited compared to normal diving schools. After we had found the right things, we could start.
The dive site Barracuda Heads
Jill took us by car to the agreed meeting point at a jetty at Cape Santa Maria. After the equipment was on the boat and we had arranged a time to pick up with Jill, we were able to start. We went out by boat for about 25 minutes until we reached our dive site Barracuda Heads, which is located a little further west of Hog Cay.
Our Captain & Guide Delbert gave us some information about the dive site and five minutes later we were already in the water. He had a spear with him all the time to kill firefish if we encounter them. These are not native here and destroy the underwater world. Already during the dive we have seen how crystal clear the water is here. The visibility was really great. But it was really a bit cold – as we had feared, the 3mm-thick suits were a little too thin for the 25-degree cold/warm water.
The dive site Barracuda Heads consists of several large coral blocks around which we have swam. Even though the coral blocks weren’t so insanely fishy, we could see some nice things, like very colorful fan-like corals, reef sharks, a larger group of fish and barracudas.
Break on a beautiful sandy beach
After about 50 minutes we went back to the boat. For the one-hour surface break we went to a beautiful white sandy beach, where we could pass the time.
The burst 2nd dive in Long Island
When we went to the second dive place and we wanted to put on our diving suits again, it happened: Michael’s zipper jumped out of the lead and the suit could no longer be closed. We were still trying to fix it on the boat. Unfortunately, this was not possible. It was clear to us that we would not go diving at a water temperature of 25 degrees without a suit. Unfortunately, the suit could not be left open, because the zipper went over the leg and the suit did not keep open. So we couldn’t do the 2nd dive and went back to the jetty. Delbert has told us that he is so sorry. We also – because we would have liked to have done a dive in the waters off Long Island.
Of course, it can always happen that parts of a diving equipment or even a wetsuit can break during a dive! What we couldn’t understand, however, was the fact that we were still supposed to pay for the 2nd dive in full. So we really should pay 400 USD, although it was not our fault that we could not perceive the 2nd dive. The hotel employee then called our guide again and told him that we would not pay the 400 USD. He then reduced the price to 300 USD, but did not want to offer less. Also Jill, from which we had got the (defective) equipment, had unfortunately not helped us any more. Eventually we paid the 300 USD, but were very disappointed and went home with the reminder that this was our most expensive dive ever.
Our video of diving in Long Island
Here is a short video of our dive on Long Island:
All travelogues from the BahamasThe Bahamas have been on our bucket list for a really long time. And this year we had found a relatively good and cheap flight offer to combine the Bahamas with a few days in Florida afterwards. On our trip we visited different islands on the Bahamas in 9 days and these are our travel reports:
Things to know: Travel Guide for the Bahamas, Tourist Attractions & Things to do
Travel Planing: The Bahamas and Florida & our flight to Nassau
New Providence: Tourist Attractions, Things to Do & Photo spots in Nassau
New Providence: Hotel Atlantis & Paradise Island
Exumas: Flight to Great Exuma Island & Hotel in George Town
Exumas: Beaches & Sting Rays feeding on Stocking Island
Exumas: The swimming Pigs of Big Major Cay
Exumas: Swimming with the nurse sharks of Compass Cay
Long Island: The Stella Maris Resort & our Kayak Tour
Long Island: Self guided tour around the island by car
Long Island: The swimming Pigs at Dove Cay
Long Island: Diving in the underwater world of the Caribbean