Local scuba diving on Ambergris Caye
Grab a mask and fin and dive right in. Belize boasts of the world’s second largest barrier reef. This can be your backyard playground.
Where to begin
Your day starts at 8:30 AM. Most local dive center will offer free pickups from any dock in San Pedro. As you wait for your ride, a broad and warm smiling face approaches you, it’s your guide! A short ride to the dive shop where you fill up some paperwork, permission to start your adventure! Whether you are an avid diver and own your personal set of dive gear or need gear from the dive shop your guide will give you a thorough briefing on setting up your gear for the first time.
Full tank, check! Working gauges, check! Dive buddy, check! Ready to start your underwater adventure! Step into the boat that is jamming to low Caribbean reggae or soca music, gets you on the groove. The boat ride is about 5 to 10 minutes to the actual dive site. The very astute captain surfs the waves through the channel, an opening on the reef to cross to the other side. Once on the other side of the reef, the captain will tie the vessel to the mooring buoy at the dive site.
Tackle Box Canyons
The first dive site, Tackle Box Canyons! A thorough dive briefing by your dive master gives you a set plan on what to expect underwater direction and length of your dive. A quick back roll entry and you’re in. Free decent to the bottom on a sand area while you wait for the rest of the group to meet at the bottom. Now it’s time to buddy up and down you go. Visibility on most days is impeccable. You can see the wonderful creation of the underwater world. Bubbles, rushing up, out of your regulator while you secure your next breath. Serenity, total bliss! As you adjust your buoyancy, a huge grouper graciously swim pass you. While on the sandy bottom the wrasse searches the sand looking for small invertebrates to munch on!
Tackle Box Canyon is among my favorite dive sites locally. The deep canyons descend to about 90-110 ft are breathtaking. Their maze-like formation leads you to a tunnel. Pitch black walls with a dim light at the end of the tunnels, raises your adrenaline. While you navigate through the tunnel you can spot spider crabs on the walls, and other invertebrates, small schools of baby fishes sheltering from predators. As you dive your way out into the majestic canyons walls, swarming with schools of Creole wrasse, blue tangs, and snappers, its humbling! You start ascending slowly to shallower dept while enjoying the spectacular scenery underwater. Barrel sponges, sea fans and soft coral sway harmoniously on the swallower dept.
Divemaster does a round check for air supply to ensure that you have enough to make your safety stop. He’ll signal everyone to start heading to 15ft of water to do a routine 3 minutes safety stop before breaking to surface. Excitement, Adrenalin, disbelieve fills the air as every head pops out of the water. A wonderful dive in the life of a diver! This can be you! This can be your playground! Let’s grab a mask and fins and dive right in!