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Monday, May 10, 2010

Punta Gruesa take on Belize & Tulum!

After weeks of hard work in Punta Gruesa we finally got our well deserved long weekend! Most people went either to Caye Caulker, Belize or Tulum, Mexico. I had trouble deciding where to go; it had been my dream to dive the famous Blue Hole in Belize for quite some time, but I was concerned about expense. In the end I couldn’t resist! Nine of us decided to undertake the Belizean adventure and - trust me - NO ONE came back with regrets.

We had an epic journey to Caye Caulker and nearly didn’t make it in time; luckily a friendly Belizean drove us to the island, so with a bit of extra money we arrived at our destination. We found a nice place to stay, ate a scrumptious dinner and went to sleep reasonably early to prepare for the exciting day to come.

Next morning it was windy, but nevertheless we began kitting up. The staff checked the weather report before we left, and almost called it off!!! Luckily they checked a second weather report which was friendlier and more accurate, and off we went (Don’t mind my excitement; after all it was a dream coming true)!

After a bumpy ride we arrived at the Blue Hole, jumped into the water and began our thrilling dive! At around 40 meters we were awed by gigantic stalactites attached to an overhang surrounding the hole. Under the effects of nitrogen narcosis people were quite amused swimming and dodging them, but bottom times are short at 40 meters so we began our ascent and were faced by about 6-7 large reef sharks. It was simply AWESOME.

The next two dives were mesmerizing. No sharks, instead we saw tons of Southern Stingrays and Spotted Eagle Rays of various sizes. However, the reef with its gigantic corals and sponges and a tremendous diversity of fish species was fascinating; “surreal and magical” according to some in our group. Unfortunately the weekend had to end and we came back a lot poorer than before, but a lot happier too!