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Dive Sites

Grand Cayman
Little Cayman
Cayman Brac


Grand Cayman

    Originally Liberty ship, then a freighter and ultimately a drug smuggling boat that ran aground in the Caymans, 184ft Oro Verde was purposefully sunk as an artificial reef off the west coast in 1980, having been cleaned up and all sharp objects, doors & hatches removed for safety reasons. She lies in just 50ft of water, off Seven Mile Beach, making her an ideal dive for divers of all abilities. The wreck is beginning to get covered in corals & sponges and inside you can find various species of larger grouper, morays and juvenile fish, and on the outside jacks, snapper, grunts etc. Sergeant majors can be seen in huge numbers, guarding their hordes of purple eggs from marauding fish.

    Marked by a large coral head on the reef edge, Trinity Caves is 3 swim-throughs that start at the reef top in 40ft of water and twist there way through the reef to where they open up onto the wall at 90ft. In these swim-throughs you will find black coral, seafans & tube sponges and schools of glassfish. Lobsters can be seen lurking in the many holes within caves. You will also see parrotfish, tang and angelfish, chromis and chub.

    Further round the reef from Trinity Caves is Bonnie’s Arch. >From a stunning croal garden along the top of the reef, a sand chute leads to a fragile coral arch covered in sponges and soft corals. On the nearby reef can be found some monster barrel sponges up to 6ft across. The arch is usually used as a frame by schooling tarpon, glassfish and yellowtails. The reef is home to filefish, triggerfish and grunts. One of the best dives in the Caymans!

    A shallow (12ft) sand area with a few coral heads on Grand Cayman’s north side is home to a collection of friendly Southern stingrays that insist on being fed and pampered by divers. Even for veteran divers who have "been there, done that" this is a great place to interact with rays and get some great natural light photos.

    One of Grand Cayman's star attractions for night diving, the Balboa lies directly off George Town Harbour. A 376ft freighter that sank while at anchor during a hurricane in 1932, she was subsequently dynamited to gain access to the harbour and today her mangled remains lie in just 30ft of water, scattered across a sandy bottom, her stern section upside down. She is covered in colourful sponge growth, particularly at the stern and Balboa is now a safe home for all sorts of nocturnal beasties including baskets stars, octopuses, scorpionfish, and large crustaceans from lobsters to spider crabs.


Little Cayman

    At the far eastern end of Bloody Bay Wall, Nancy’s Cup of Tea is a section of drop-off that starts in 35ft of water and descends into the abyssal depths. The reef in this area is also pitted with numerous swim-throughs and caves. Here a huge coral pinnacle rises from about 90ft to a peak at 40ft. You can circle round the pinnacle as you come up during the dive – hence its other name, Magic Roundabout. This pinnacle and the surrounding reef are richly covered in black coral trees, wire corals, red vase sponges, orange elaphant ear sponges and enormous tube sponges of infinite colour. The crevices are filled with glassfish, Nassau groupers, squirrelfish, bigeyes, and a host of other reef fish. With such a massive wall and deep ocean beyond, the occasional glance seward may unearth grey reef sharks or rays. This is a must-do dive on anyone’s agenda!

    Where Jackson Wall ends and bloody Bay Wall begins (didn’t you see the signpost?!) a large U-shaped crevice in the reef wall creates a large mushroom shaped pinnacle with a large cave behind and to the side. Soft corals and seafans cover the reef, and this is a particularly good place to find trumpetfish & flamingo tongues hiding amongst the fronds of soft coral. Here also lives a famous resident of Little Cayman. Depending on who you talk to the friendly Nassau grouper who makes this area his home is either called "Ben" or "Freddie". I suppose we can be grateful for the fact that they are of the same gender! He is a keen, if not over exuberant model, sometimes getting just a little too close to the lens! He hangs out near a large barrel sponge just over the ledge of the reef. The whole area is festooned with huge tube & rope sponges

    This site is also known as The Chimneys, which to us Brits probably sounds better than Randy’s Gazebo! A series of chimneys extend down from the reef top into the reef structure and exit on the wall. Here also is a cut into the reef framed by a magnificent archway covered in feather stars and basket, tube & vase sponges. Frame diver in the arch and get a great wide angle shot!


Cayman Brac

    An unlikely name for a Russian Brigadier Type II destroyer, you might think, but this 330ft vessel was renamed the Keith Tibbets in honour of the local and recently departed dive operator. Having thoroughly cleaned out the boat and made her safe & secure she was scuttled in 90ft of water on a sandy bottom, close to an area of healthy coral reef. The uppermost section of the ship, the conning tower, is in only 25ft of water, so she makes for a great wreck dive for people of all skill levels. Her forward & aft 4" guns and forward missile launcher are still in place, and you can access the bridge and other sections of the ship without fear of entanglement! Already coral and sponges have established themselves on the ship, and it has become home for a variety of fish including a school of jacks that are often seen under the imposing raked bow of this shipwreck.

    Named after a Cayman Brac family long associated with the dive local industry this is a tongue & groove reef formation running parallel with the shore line; the gullies are filled with sand, the sides of the channels are covered in soft corals, seafans, yube sponges and hard coral formations, while the tops of the ridges are covered with large stands of green elkhorn coral.

    Another tongue & groove formation this time running perpendicular to the reef, this is an excellent fish & critter dive: sharptail eels, French anglefish, flamingo tongues on purple seafans, bristleworms, arrowcrabs, Pederson’s shrimps in corkscrew anemones, schooling squid on the sandy areas inshore from the reef, and turtles relaxing in the sand channels. If you want some great medium & macro format photographs, this is the place to be.

    One of several wall sites along Cayman Brac's south side, Wilderness plunges deep into the blue, and is in pristine condition. Crevices cut into the wall all along the lip, and a massive pinnacle rises up beyond the wall to within 100ft of the surface, forming a channel along the reef for pelagic species such as sharks & rays to move through, close to the reef, but close to open water. Here you can see stingrays, turtles, Nassau groupers, schooling jacks, snappers & angelfish. Seafans hang along the sides of the spurs & grooves, mixing with rope sponges, hard corals and large, bulbous tube sponges. The sponges in this area are massive and come in a myriad shades of red, orange, purple, yellow & green.

    Another spur & groove section on the south side of Cayman Brac, this reef is home to about 40 large tarpon, that spend the daylight hours gathered in small aggregations in the tunnels and caves that dot the reef. These are big fish – up to 5ft in length – and during the day are docile and approachable. If you can get in behind them, or find an area that is backlit by natural sunlight then you can get some great photos! The reef is dominated by pillar, elkhorn & star corals.



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