Trip Report Dive Haven Belize Trip report 7/31 thru 8/7/2021 - Turneffe Atoll

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RickPeck

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Port St. Lucie
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I'm a Fish!
The diving was excellent. The dive operation was on island time, but it was good too. The hotel was quirky. Clear glass window from the main room into the bathroom. That is weird, but not a problem after 34 years of marriage. All the plumbing fixtures are corroded, which I don’t understand why since it was built in 2018.

Food was served buffet style and not that good. A couple times I got chicken that was not cooked through. Meat next to the bone was pink or red. I just avoided chicken with bones for the rest of the trip. My wife was really not eating that much and the wait staff noticed. They asked her what she liked and made sure she had a plate every lunch and dinner. The staff was doing the best they could with being short of people. They worked their butts off to try and make sure we were happy. Dive staff too.

Bugs were insatiable and very aggressive. Take bug spray and start applying it right after you get off the airplane in Belize city. If you wait until you get to the Atoll it’s too late. You’ll be well chewed.

As I said, the diving was excellent. Lots of Eagle Rays, Huge Southern Sting Rays, Green Moray, Nurse Shark, Black Tip shark, Hammerhead Shark, Grouper, Hawksbill Turtles, Loggerhead Turtles, two pods of Dolphins and an aggregation of Blue Tang that were mating. All the other usual fish. Reefs were in pretty good shape and colorful. Most dives were in the 60’-80’ range with the exception of The Blue Hole. The group went to The Blue Hole but the wife and I chose not to go. I have done it before and she wasn’t interested. Getting back on the boat was challenging in 3’-5’ chop. The boats are narrow and the ladder is located on the side so the rolling is an issue creating lots of ladder movement. Several of our group got banged up shins. The dive masters assisted with getting fins off and getting people on the boat.

Nitrox is available and it’s a membrane system. It was a consistent 32% all week.

I wouldn’t go back but I’m glad we did it once.
 

maj2

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Windsor, Ontario Canada
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I was there in March 2020, just before things shut down for the pandemic (our flight home was on the last day of international flights for some time).

I did not mind the food at all, and never had anything undercooked. It was definitely simple food -- nothing fancy. The fried lionfish that was caught each day was delicious!

Agreed that the diving was very good. No time limits, and some dives (esp. the afternoon dives) easily past 60 minutes.

Because of the sale prices being offered at the time for their soft opening and a mistake they made on our quote, we got good value. They quoted us in Canadian funds instead of US, but they honoured it so we saved a lot on exchange. It would be a tough sell at the full price points they talking at the time.
 

drrich2

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Southwestern Kentucky
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Nice to see a report on a provider I don't see mentioned much; per their website it's a fairly new place. A few follow up questions:

1.) Were the air conditioning and wifi effective?

2.) Those biting bugs...were the mosquitos, 'sea fleas' or both? Usually sand fleas are cited as a problem with beaches in Roatan, but mosquitos are more widespread. Might be handy to know what was eating you (literally).

3.) From their website, looks like they offer 3 dives/day. Is that what you found?

4.) From their site it looks like a beautiful place, and claims to offer use of the largest swimming pool in the hemisphere. Aside from diving, is there much else to do beside relaxation? I get that this is on Turneffe Atoll so it lacks quick access to mainland excursions. Does the resort offer evening entertainment?

5.) Since this is a place I haven't seen mentioned much (if at all) on the forum, as opposed to Turneffe Island Resort, and Blackbird Caye Resort, what led you to decide on Dive Haven Belize?

6.) Do you think you'll return to dive Belize with a different provider, or just move on to other destinations, now that you've done it?
 

ReefHound

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The diving was excellent. The dive operation was on island time, but it was good too. The hotel was quirky. Clear glass window from the main room into the bathroom. That is weird, but not a problem after 34 years of marriage. All the plumbing fixtures are corroded, which I don’t understand why since it was built in 2018.

The place might have been finished in 2018 but I understand it was under intermittent construction for many years. Maybe the fixtures were installed in 2014 and spent years in a non-climate-controlled structure. Or to save construction costs, they were bought surplus or used.
 

drrich2

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It was definitely simple food -- nothing fancy.

It would be a tough sell at the full price points they talking at the time.

Got a question about that. When I hit their website, I was impressed with the brisk, very clean 'white' look of their rooms. Looked a bit upscale. And you mentioned the price they're charging now. If the food is lackluster it could be a mismatch that leaves some guests dissatisfied.

What did you mean by 'simple?' A cheeseburger and fries can be really good...but called simple. Or a variety of dishes in a cafeteria of mediocre taste might be called simple. Just curious if this is something people who run across this thread researching their options ought to know about.
 

maj2

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Location
Windsor, Ontario Canada
# of dives
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In March 2020, the A/C was good, and the wifi covered most of the resort, inside and out. For any commonly used areas anyway. There may not be wifi coverage at their airstrip, but I doubt many of us will be accessing the resort that way.:rofl3:

I am almost 18 months removed from my stay, so I do not recall a lot of menu specifics. The coffee was horrid. When they fired up the pizza oven, the pizza was pretty good. It was simple, but an average simple... Nothing spectacular.

Definitely lots of white, and nice lines. However, as the original post mentioned... a lot of corrosion with the plumbing fixtures, ceiling fans, etc. Not sure what their life expectancy would be in that environment, but it was noticeable. Ceiling fans in the dining area had definitely seen better days. The rooms themselves were well appointed, but the couches in the common areas of the hotel (eg near the elevators) were worn and mismatched (eg two "left" sections of a sectional). Weird stuff like that. Looked great in the photos, but not always up close...
 
OP
RickPeck

RickPeck

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Scuba Instructor
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182
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Location
Port St. Lucie
# of dives
I'm a Fish!
Nice to see a report on a provider I don't see mentioned much; per their website it's a fairly new place. A few follow up questions:

1.) Were the air conditioning and wifi effective?

2.) Those biting bugs...were the mosquitos, 'sea fleas' or both? Usually sand fleas are cited as a problem with beaches in Roatan, but mosquitos are more widespread. Might be handy to know what was eating you (literally).

3.) From their website, looks like they offer 3 dives/day. Is that what you found?

4.) From their site it looks like a beautiful place, and claims to offer use of the largest swimming pool in the hemisphere. Aside from diving, is there much else to do beside relaxation? I get that this is on Turneffe Atoll so it lacks quick access to mainland excursions. Does the resort offer evening entertainment?

5.) Since this is a place I haven't seen mentioned much (if at all) on the forum, as opposed to Turneffe Island Resort, and Blackbird Caye Resort, what led you to decide on Dive Haven Belize?

6.) Do you think you'll return to dive Belize with a different provider, or just move on to other destinations, now that you've done it?


1. Air conditioning and Wi-Fi were good. No TV unless you have a streaming account like Netflix.
2. Mostly mosquitos I think. My wife went to the doctor for an antibiotic as she was severely swollen and her ankle was turning red.
3. Yes, three dives a day.
4. Karaoke one night. There is nothing else to do. One of the reasons we wouldn't go back.
5. Dive shop had a group trip going there. We joined in.
6. I've been to Belize twice now. We will probably move onto another location.

Best Regards,

Rick
 

Downing

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IThe coffee was horrid.

I've been all over Belize, except for AC and CC, and have found that the only chance of scoring a decent cup of coffee is in a dedicated coffee shop. Even then, you take your chances. Best coffee I've found is Above Grounds, which is in a tree house in Placencia.
 

chillyinCanada

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I've been all over Belize, except for AC and CC, and have found that the only chance of scoring a decent cup of coffee is in a dedicated coffee shop. Even then, you take your chances. Best coffee I've found is Above Grounds, which is in a tree house in Placencia.

I love that place and yes, coffee is good!

Is Secret Garden still around?
 

Downing

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I hope so. I don't remember their coffee, but they had really good salads and an imported steak dinner.

That's two things Belize isn't good at: coffee and steaks. But they sure know how to cook up a mean mess of stewed chicken, rice and beans. Two of my favorite spots, the first on the south side of Hattieville and the second at Gales Point:

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