One of the biggest thrills for us being back in Belize is the chance to do some fantastic diving. Our dive operator of choice is Belize Pro Dive Center. There are some excellent companies on the island, but of the few we have tried these guys and gal are the best. Part of the excitement was being able to be part of the group which made the first trip to the Blue Hole in their new boat “Wish You Had It!”. As well we took this chance to add another specialty to our diving resume by taking the Deep Dive Course. It dovetailed well with the trip to the Blue Hole.
The trip out to the Blue Hole was awesome. We were picked up at 5:30 at the pier by our condo and treated to a light breakfast at the dive shop before heading out as the sun rose across the water. As an added bonus the waters were very calm and we were able to take a straight line to our destination. When the water is rough you need to follow the reef around or risk being smashed senseless by the waves. The direct route saves 15 to 30 minutes, so we arrived in about 2 hours 10 minutes.
The Blue Hole dive is to the limit of recreational diving. We descended along a slope to approximately 10m (33ft) then you basically step off into the abyss. It is not actually an abyss as the bottom is about 130m (400ft+) below you, but if you went to the bottom the result would be the same as an abyss for a recreationally equiped and trained diver.
The group we were with was great and the dive masters watched over everyone very carefully making it a fun and relaxed dive. When you get to the 40m (130ft ) level dozens of stalagtites appear beside you on a small overhang. Very cool swimming around these geological features.
On the way up we were visited by some reef sharks. Other than those sharks there was not a lot of life to observe on this particular dive.
After finishing at the Blue Hole the crew took us to the Half Moon Caye dive site. By many this is considered the best dive of the day and it certainly did not disappoint. We were treated to some great swim throughs as well as a vast variety of fish. An outstanding dive.
After our second dive we headed over to Half Moon Caye for lunch. It is a fairly busy area as this is where all the dive charters come for lunch. The area of the Blue Hole is a protected area, therefore you cannot just go and land on whatever caye you wish. On Half Moon Caye you also have the opportunity to observe a colony of Redfooted Booby Birds.
Our last dive of the day was at an area called The Aquarium. It is a very descriptive and appropriate choice for the name. The number and diversity of fish in this area is difficult to comprehend. We enjoyed a relaxed and unhurried dive through this wonderland. An excellent way to wind up the day.
The Blue Hole is not a cheap place to dive, but if you dive and you come to Belize it is simply something that has to be done. We returned home after a full day tired and satified. I recommend this outing to anyone who loves spending time below the waves.