Review Date AVG ShoreDiving Site
12/21/2003 4.39 Santu Pretu Curacao, ABC Islands
This site is off the beaten path, but easily accessed with any vehicle. Not much in the way of parking, but I only saw one other group of divers during the three dives I did here. This is the only beach on Curacao I came across that had black (dark) colored sand. It didn't affect the visibility though... it just wasn't as "bright" of a dive as others I'd experienced in Curacao. It is a bit of a kick out to the reef. However, just before you get to the reef there is a small wreck sitting on the sandy bottom at about 20-25 feet. Not a lot happening around the wreck, but interesting none the less. The coral formations here are very nice and there are lots of sponges. I did see a turtle and several morays. A very nice dive site with a nice little beach to kick back and soak up some rays.
12/21/2003 4.44 Playa Hulu Curacao, ABC Islands
I did three dives at Playa Hulu during March of 2002. This stretch of Curacao's coast from my memory has four very nice shore dives, Boka Santu Pretu, Boka Pos Spano, Playa Hulu, and Playa Hundu. The one draw back is getting to them... about three quarters of the way to Westpunt just before Lagun there is a small sign for "Santu Pretu and San Nicholas" followed by a dirt road to the left. A hundred feet of so down the road is a chain gate. I have no idea what time or days this chain is lowered. Of the six times I attempted to access this site only on three of those times was the chain lowered. On one of those times, about another hundred feet down the road was a local collecting 5 guilder to access the "park". Money well spent! This is Curacao remoteness at its best! Of the four sites I visited, two (Bokas Santu Pretu and Pos Spano) are easily accessible with a two wheel drive vehicle. However, Playas Hulu and Hundu I would recommend a four wheel drive or at least a vehicle with high clearance. Maps of Curacao indicate at least two routes into Hulu and Hundu, but I was only able to find the one. Playa Hulu has plenty of parking and is identifiable by an abandoned stone shack across from the steps carved in the rocks leading down to the beach. The steps are the only tricky part of the entry for this dive. Very sandy (secluded) beach. The reef is a short kick out and starts quite shallow, about 15 feet. Visibility was excellent on all my dives (100+). Beautiful unspoiled coral and no litter to be seen above or underwater. I saw turtles on two of my dives here. On the first dive we had a school of about 20-30 barracudas that hovered about 20 feet above us the entire dive (eerie!) but cool! I personally like the remote dive sites and this is my favorite of all my Curacao adventures!
12/21/2003 4.31 Playa Manzalino Curacao, ABC Islands
Feb 2002. The drive/road down to Playa Manzanilla (Mansalina) was good for a dirt road. A bit of a steep hill just past the Landhuis gate where you may have to pay 5 guilder to pass. Saw several parrots flying along the road on each of my visits to the three dive sites on this stretch of the coast. The beach was very secluded and nice place to hang out if you don't mind not having any facilities available. Entry was easy followed by a short kick out to the reef (about 50ft). The current was never very strong, but it did vary in direction on each dive. The reef is awesome in either direction and is pretty much the same reef continued from the Playa Shon Mosa dive site. Lots of coral with lots of hiding spots for morays large and small!
01/11/2003 4.27 Superior Producer Curacao, ABC Islands
I did three dives on the Superior Producer and was in awe every time. I wouldn't recommend trying to enter this dive from the Holiday Beach... it's one heck of a swim out (usually against the current). My recommendation is to enter near the pier (not visible in the pictures (there is a dive rock identifying the site). Entry can be a bit tricky and boots are a must! Best to inflate your BC and start floating as quickly as possible. Start your decent about two thirds the way to the buoy. The wreck comes into view around 40ft, looming like a huge shadow. The wreck is upright and has become home to many creatures. The cargo bay is wide open and easily accessible. We always did a multi-level dive here. After spending about 8-10 minutes on the wreck we headed west along the reef and exited at the Holiday Beach. Speaking of Holiday Beach... This is another great dive site! There is a spectacular double reef that shouldn't be missed! The first reef is great for beginners (my open water cert) and the second reef is awesome for all. To the left it drops down to 100ft plus pretty quick (watch your depth) to the right it stays around 60-80ft. Beautiful unspoiled coral, very large schools of fish and a wide variety of tropical fish.
12/29/2002 4.72 Daaibooi Curacao, ABC Islands
Very easy shoredive. Plenty of parking. Maybe not as nice as Porto Marie, but it's not as crowded. The reef was excellent with lots of soft and hard corals. Saw very large schools of small fish being attacked and eaten by pretty good sized Jacks. That was pretty cool to watch for a while. Also a large sting ray. Sometime I wonder just how big some of the stuff I see underwater actually is… I know the mask magnifies things a bit, but my guess is the sting ray must have been about six feet to the tip of it's tail. This was a nice beach to relax at after the dive. The guy that runs the concession stand makes excellent fries and has ice cold Amstel. Always a plus at the end of a good day of diving.
12/29/2002 4.27 Pestbaai Curacao, ABC Islands
This one definitely an off the beaten path site. The dirt road leading to the parking area was fair. Plenty of parking. I did two dives here in mid March 2002. The trek down to the water was the roughest I'd experienced. Not too bad if you just take your time. Make sure you get good visual of the entry point because once you surface after the dive the cliffs pretty much all look the same. The payoff is a short kick out to a very beautiful and unspoiled reef. The reef starts at about 10-15ft and goes down quite deep. My max depth was 65ft. Vis was perfect. Saw a large green moray swimming in the open and several smaller spotted morays. I think the dive is worth the effort.
12/29/2002 4.03 Playa Lagun Curacao, ABC Islands
Entry was very easy and there's a bit of a kick to the reef. The reef (to the left) was nice and had a gradual slope. Saw my first turtle during my second dive at this site. My dive partner was so engrossed with the turtle that he missed the two dolphin that swam right over our heads. That was an awesome sight! Came across two small caves up against the cliff, but didn't go in. There's dive shop here with a very friendly staff. They have a nice hand drawn map of the best way to dive this site. I recommend stopping in to check it out.
12/28/2002 4.85 Port Marie Curacao, ABC Islands
This is probably the most popular beach on the island. It's great for diving and sunbathing and diving and eating and diving and drinking and diving and beautiful women and did I mention diving?! The diving here was simply awesome in all aspects! With a nice circular shaped reef a short kick out it doesn't matter which direction you go... I saw a wider variety of sea life at this location than any other. My favorite sighting here was a beautiful Manta Ray swimming in a large circle down around 60ft. I sat a watched it for fifteen minutes before it swam away. Porto Marie is the kind place I could spend the entire day at and not feel like I was missing out on something going on elsewhere. The gates close around 6pm... gives you just enough time to catch the sunset (winter time) before heading back into town.
12/28/2002 3.52 Playa Jeremi Curacao, ABC Islands
Parking is right off the road to Westpunt. A little bit of a walk down to the beach. Looked to be a popular beach with the locals that live nearby. The coral was nice, but showed lots of damage (supposedly from the hurricane two years earlier). There was lots of trash, fishing lines and concrete anchors scatter across the reef. Out of all my dives while in Curacao, this is the only one I didn't go back to for a second dive. It probably didn't help that our car was broken into while we were diving.
12/28/2002 4.42 Kleine Knip Curacao, ABC Islands
Very secluded site during the week... the weekends on the other hand are hopping with the locals BBQing at the beach and having a good time. I did four dives at this site and loved every one! It's quite a kick out to the reef, but worth the effort. Without a doubt some of the best coral formations I've ever seen. Sea life was a plenty! On my third dive after kicking out about half way on my back I decided to flip over and snorkel the rest of the way only to find myself in the middle of literally thousands of small jellyfish shaped like that little spaceship Darth Vader used in Star Wars! Needless to say initially I was pretty freaked out! Fortunately they turned out to be harmless and we just swam right through them. That was fun!
12/28/2002 4.59 Playa Shon Moso Curacao, ABC Islands
The drive/road down to Shon Mosa was good for a dirt road. A bit of a steep hill just past the gate where you may have to pay 5 guilder to pass. Saw several parrots flying along the road on each of my visits here. The beach was very secluded and nice place to hang out if you don't mind not having any facilities available. Entry was easy followed by a short kick out to the reef (about 50ft). The current was never very strong, but it did vary in direction on each dive. The reef is awesome in either direction. I found there to be more soft coral and sponges at this site than some of the other around the island. There are some very large coral heads here too. As far as sea life... I saw several green morays (large and small) and a very large sting-ray. I didn't see any large fish, but there were more than plenty of the smaller reef fish around. All in all... a great dive!
11/30/2002 4.04 Playa Largu Curacao, ABC Islands
One of my favorite dive sites on the island... I did three dives here between February and April 02. However, on my first attempt to dive here (early Feb) the surf was so bad we never made it in. Fortunately I didn't let that experience stop me from coming back. The coral here, hard and soft, is beautiful and starts very shallow (10-15ft). The reef was best between 30-50ft, vis was excellent and I saw turtles every dive. This site seemed pretty secluded, we always had it to ourselves. Entry is a little rough... boots are a must.