After renting a vehicle and getting the dogs checked in at the kennel, we headed over to Las Terrenas on the Samana peninsula for a weekend of diving. After a fun 3 hours of Dominican driving, checked into Enjoy hotel. This place is great - quiet, clean and super hosts! Great little hotel with bungalows, a pool area and a nice friendly bar.
Headed over to The Dive Academy (the link is under my "more" tab) to check in with Paul, Audrey and Sonya. Paul and Audrey have a fully equipped operation and offer all levels of certification and cater to everything a diver needs. A very well run operation with super friendly staff. And - the dive boat is amazing.
Saturday we did 2 local dives by the islands in front of the bay: Canyon and Caverns. REALLY cool structure with great swim throughs and all at a nice easy shallower depth. Finished the 2 dives and stopped at One Love Surf Shack for a refreshment after the dive. Great little bar right on the beach. Be sure and check out The Secret Squirrel! You will not be disappointed!
Sunday morning and off to dive The Wall and The Pinnacle at Cabo Cabron. The boat ride is about 1.5 hours and the scenery along the way is amazing. HUGE cliffs and rugged landscape reminded me of diving on the West Coast of Canada, albeit a lot warmer. The hot coffee, breakfast sandwiches and snacks served up along the way are all delicious and there is PLENTY of food! Meanwhile Sonya and the crew are preparing the tanks and ensuring everyone is set to go when we arrive at the dive site.
After arriving at The Wall, we look down into the crystal clear water and can VERY clearly see the bottom about 25 feet below and looking over the edge of the drop-off everyone can tell this is going to be an excellent day of diving. The best part for me - basically no swimming. i hate swimming. The drop off is only a few fin kicks from the entry point. As we get into the water it is clear that the 150 foot plus visibility is going to make for spectacular diving. We are greeted by a number of harmless Moon Jellyfish and head down over the wall. The bottom app. 150 feet below is clearly visible and should make for some great photo opportunities. There is life everywhere: The wall is covered in corals and sponges and the colors burst when you shine your light on them. Overhangs, caverns, outcropping and the extreme vertical wall offer many options. You can stay shallower or explore the depths as you watch your bottom time and air consumption. Paul, Audrey and Sonya ensure that all clients are well taken care of and are guided professionally.
After having to exit the water, a hearty lunch is served up on the boat. Meats, salad, cakes and fruits are all delicious! Then, it's time for the second dive - The Pinnacle. Just off of the wall, the pinnacle rises up from 104 feet towards the surface. Home to abundant life, rays, barracuda, all types of reef fish - this is a dive not to be missed. Again, another super dive with 150 foot plus of visibility.
Time to head back to the dive shop and everyone is discussing the dives, the scenery and enjoying some refreshments. This is a MUST DO if you are in Las Terrenas!
Monday and it is off to Las Galeras to dive The Tower. Paul, Audrey, Sonya and I drove the hour and 15 minutes to a beautiful beach in this quaint little town. The sand on the beach is like like white sifted flour - really cool!
We had rented a small boat and after a 20 minute boat ride we arrived at The Tower. The site is located at the tip of Cabro Cabron National Park and is basically in the open ocean. Massive cliffs offer an incredible view from the boat. The Tower rises from a depth of 171 feet below the surface all the way up to 20 feet. As we enter the water, we are blessed with 80 foot visibility and immediately start to descend through schools of fish using the rock as shelter. This is really a rugged underwater mountain top and if this was above the surface, we could have easily been on the peak of one of the Rocky Mountains. Carefully watching our depth and bottom time we descend into an incredible world and were greeted by Caribbean Reef Sharks effortlessly swimming and observing all that goes on around them. Huge barracuda, snapper grouper and numerous other species of reef fish inhabit the nooks and crannies of this amazing dive site. Sadly, our gauges tell us we have to return to the surface!
Heading home on Tuesday morning we realize we are blessed to live in this country, to enjoy the diving and the culture, and to meet new lifelong friends. A big Thanks to all the crew at The Dive Academy.
Now, time to get back into the water with the crew from Divecenter Merlin and enjoy the underwater world here in Sosua.
Stay safe, save our oceans, and thanks for following me!