Trip Report Marazul Dive Resort, Jan 15-22, ‘22

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RIHappyDiver

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Thanks for posting this well though out report. We were supposed to leave for Curacao in 2 weeks, but I was too nervous about getting pcr results back in time. Going to Cozumel instead. I love diving there, but it has been a while since my last Curacao visit. I love staying at the Marazul resort. Perhaps this fall I might be able to plan something.
Do you have a unit that you usually stay in? Our unit was nice but the unit the other couple were in seemed a bit better, and fewer ants 😝
 
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RIHappyDiver

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Thanks for the post, had fun reading it.
Thanks, Vatty. I had fun doing everything we did. Really liked Shete Boka a lot! Great way to spend some topside time. We had planned on climbing Christoffel mountain but the humidity was a little too much that week. Would also like to hit some of the other shore dive sites. Maybe next time!
 

drrich2

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Thank you for a fine review of another option in the Westpunt region of Curacao. Curacao gets a lot of interest from people who've been to Bonaire, or are considering Bonaire vs. other options, where shore diving is an option. The Westpunt region has a rep. for being rustic/sleepy (which makes your pointing out places to eat more important). The 2 places in that area I've had on my short list to consider if I ever venture that way are Go West Apartments and Nos Krusero.

Since Curacao by reputation has shore sites farther apart and more time consuming to travel between that Bonaire's west coast, I imagine the important of a house reef is even greater than when staying oceanfront in Bonaire, so I also appreciate your describing it at Marazul.

Since you sampled Go West's Alice in Wonderland, and Marazul's own house reef, would the comparison (e.g.: reef quality, ease/hassles of entry/exit/swim out) bear on your choice of where to stay if you return to Westpunt?

You did a broader range of activities rather than a 'dive-dive-dive' week; how many dives did you get in, and how many of them were shore dives?
 
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RIHappyDiver

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Thank you for a fine review of another option in the Westpunt region of Curacao. Curacao gets a lot of interest from people who've been to Bonaire, or are considering Bonaire vs. other options, where shore diving is an option. The Westpunt region has a rep. for being rustic/sleepy (which makes your pointing out places to eat more important). The 2 places in that area I've had on my short list to consider if I ever venture that way are Go West Apartments and Nos Krusero.

Since Curacao by reputation has shore sites farther apart and more time consuming to travel between that Bonaire's west coast, I imagine the important of a house reef is even greater than when staying oceanfront in Bonaire, so I also appreciate your describing it at Marazul.

Since you sampled Go West's Alice in Wonderland, and Marazul's own house reef, would the comparison (e.g.: reef quality, ease/hassles of entry/exit/swim out) bear on your choice of where to stay if you return to Westpunt?

You did a broader range of activities rather than a 'dive-dive-dive' week; how many dives did you get in, and how many of them were shore dives?
Hello,

Having the house reef at Marazul was definitely nice, and the stairs to the entry points made it pretty easy, especially the east (south) end. The western stairs are steeper. Post # 49 of Curacao: What has better diving: Westpunt vs Willemstad sides has a great description of the entries. By contrast, at Go West there is a giant stride off of the end of the dock and follow the rope to the reef. You’ll still need to walk down some stairs to get to the dock, but not suited up.

I don’t know that this would really impact my choice of where to stay as they are, at most, a 10 minute drive from each other. Alice in wonderland can be a bit more busy, and parking can be an issue since there is a popular public beach area there. Also, keep in mind that All West Apartments is closer to Marazul than Go West and Alice in Wonderland, whereas Nos Krusero is right across the street from Go West. However, I get the impression that Nos Krusero is no longer affiliated with Go West. Maybe someone can chime in on that.

I think if I were to go back I would still stay at Marazul, but not because of the house reef. Alice in Wonderland is a better reef, but staying at Marazul gives you good access to both since Marazul is a gated property. Also, it’s a 2 minute walk to Cactus Cafe, 4 minute walk to Restaurant Playa Forti, 5 minute drive to Sol Food and an 8 minute drive to Playa Lagun for diving, snorkeling and dining.

Now, All West Apartments has the advantage of on sight tanks and drying room. Nos Krusero has the advantage of Alice being across the street, bit no water front. Also, Go West has tank pickup upstairs if you want to take tanks with you. This, IIRC is new. You no longer have to get the tanks downstairs and carry them up. So, ultimately, I don’t think you can go wrong with any of these three options.

A couple of things to keep in mind regarding the shore diving compared to Bonaire. 1) Curaçao is about twice as long as Bonaire, so you will naturally need to drive more. That being said, the road doesn’t hug the shore, and there are some areas that are tougher to reach. 2) Most of Curaçao’s shore dive sites are beach based, so easier entry/exit. 3) If you stick with the beaches that have facilities you don’t need to worry about your belongings, unlike Bonaire. As has been mentioned in other threads, if you rent tanks at the beaches you can leave your stuff with the dive shop. It’s amazing how many beaches have dive shops on Curaçao!

I ended up doing 6 dives total, 4 of which were shore dives. I had planned on doing around 10, 8 of those being shore dives, but the third diver not getting there until Sunday put a damper on some of it, and her computer acting up shot the rest. The new diver wanted to give herself a day between dives, so she intentionally limited herself. I don’t do well with drift dives, so the east tip was not on my list. Watamula was the only boat dive I had any real interest in.

Sorry for the ramble, and I hope I didn’t miss any of your questions. As you can tell, I’ll be glad to answer any others, 😂! It was a great time and a great area to stay in. We liked the layer back feel of the Westpunt area. We also liked the easy access to the national park areas.

Erik
 

morecowbells

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Do you have a unit that you usually stay in? Our unit was nice but the unit the other couple were in seemed a bit better, and fewer ants 😝
We stayed in E2 two years ago. I enjoyed that unit a lot. I cannot remember the unit we stayed in before that. I may have to check in with you when we book our next trip.

Glad to read that you didn't have to walk down the stairs at Go West in order to pick up tanks. That was a real PITA before.
 
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RIHappyDiver

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We stayed in E2 two years ago. I enjoyed that unit a lot. I cannot remember the unit we stayed in before that. I may have to check in with you when we book our next trip.

Glad to read that you didn't have to walk down the stairs at Go West in order to pick up tanks. That was a real PITA before.

We rented tanks from Go West for a night dive that we were doing at Marazul. I was thrilled when she told us to pick them up at the top of the stairs.
 

dmaziuk

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Since you sampled Go West's Alice in Wonderland, and Marazul's own house reef, would the comparison (e.g.: reef quality, ease/hassles of entry/exit/swim out) bear on your choice of where to stay if you return to Westpunt?

We swam to Marazul side several times during our last stay at AllWest (XMas - New Year); it's the same reef. There's more sand at Marazul and you'd have a marginally longer swim-out if you start there and want to drop on the reef.

My impression is the reef gets nicer towards Watamula i.e. jumping in at GoWest and going right would be my preference, all other things being equal. But it's not that much of a difference.

A couple we met there were staying at Nos Kruseros and diving with GoWest but I never asked what their arrangement with the shop was.
 

drrich2

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Also, keep in mind that All West Apartments is closer to Marazul than Go West and Alice in Wonderland, whereas Nos Krusero is right across the street from Go West.
Thanks. I was thinking of All West Apartments as an option to stay at, though I typed Go West (the dive operator). They get tangled in my mind.
 
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RIHappyDiver

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Thanks. I was thinking of All West Apartments as an option to stay at, though I typed Go West (the dive operator). They get tangled in my mind.
It looks like a nice setup, from what I could tell. Rereading my post I realize it wasn’t too clear. I meant to say that All west is closer to Marazul than IT IS to Go West. All West is about a 5 minute walk from Marazul. Again, they all seem like good options.
 

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Gowest website still lists packages with Nos Krusero though I don't see where "affiliation" matters unless you're getting a discounted price. Stay anywhere, dive with anyone.
 

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