A Dive Guide on Belize

Posted on Monday, July 7th, 2014

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Before I even arrived in Belize I was in love with the place. Why? On sale at the airport was Goss chocolate (‘Taste the Tropics! 100% natural organically grown on the shores of the Caribbean Sea’). Oh yeah! I’m not just here for the diving, you know.

Wiping the delicious brown evidence from my upper lip, I phoned Mark from Splash, a well-run dive centre at my first Belizean destination, Placencia. Nitrox? Check. Wetsuit? ‘Oh, I dive in nothing,’ he solemnly informed me. ‘That sounds very exciting!’ I marveled. ‘No! No, I mean…!’ The man would have to get used to my sense of humour.

See also: Belize Scuba Diving Packages

Placencia lies at the bottom of a long, narrow peninsular in southern Belize. I would have been happy to camp on the beach, but my digs turned out to be opulent – the upmarket Chabil Mar Villas is a beachside property set in lush, tropical gardens. And my fridge was stocked with local chocolate, so breakfast was taken care of. At 8.30am I reported to Splash where I met the warm and accommodating owner Patty Ramirez, and an associate called Marco whom she described as ‘a troublemaker’. Hah! I was going to get on with these people.

This was confirmed when boat captain Lennox told me he enjoyed a local dance called the punta. ‘What does that involve?’ I asked another crew member. ‘Oh, rubbing on each other in time to the music,’ he replied without a hint of embarrassment. ‘You try to cum the girl and she tries to cum you.’ This was a fascinating piece of education for a psychologist/ sex therapist – the word ‘cum’ actually being used as a transitive verb! I must confess I looked forward to being introduced to this dance. So let’s see: chocolate, sex and dancing already, and I haven’t even gotten wet yet (insert joke here). Belize could be my all-time favorite dive destination.

See also: Dive the Great Blue Hole of Belize

Belize lies in the Caribbean Sea, bordered by Mexico to the north and Guatemala to the west and south. Well-known for whale shark sightings, Belize boasts the longest coral reef in the northern hemisphere (185 miles), which draws more than 200,000 divers every year. The reef is home to more than 70 types of hard coral and around 500 species of fish. On my first morning, we headed out to Silk Caye North Wall. The light rain, typical for this time of year, was abating. ‘Any current?’ I asked. ‘Unlikely!’ was Mark’s reassuring reply. Not that I’ve got anything against currents; I was just a little chocolate-logged.

Read more: http://divemagazine.co.uk

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