Dove in CN in 2010. Stayed at CSS in 2006 and CN in 2007 (but not certified then). All water sports were red flagged 3 out of 6 days at CSS. Since we have been to CN two times and CSA once, was thinking about going to CTI but was wondering about the diving. We like to dive every day. Can anyone tell us about the diving at CTI compared to Negri?
We went to CSA in early Jan, 2008 for 2 weeks and had perfect weather the whole time. The water was calm, particularly in the morning, and the dive boat went out every day. We did quite a bit of diving.
Then this past end of Dec/early Jan we went to CTI and CSS. CTI is quite exposed to the wind. The water was so rough that all water sports were cancelled that week. Well, the cat finally went out (but it was rough). Forget floating, and the pools were freezing. We did no diving in a week. We did love CTI as a resort, but the weather was such a big let down (of course not their fault)
At CSS it was immediately calmer, as it's in a bay. That helps for swimming/floating, but of course they need to leave the bay to dive. Their boat is smaller too. So the weather changed and we did do some diving from CSS. We didn't think it was as good as around Negril, but the dive staff were awesome and it was still fun.
What month of the year are you thinking of going? That may make a difference, although of course you never know. In general though, the North side of Jamaica tends to be rougher water being the windward side. Ocho Rios also statistically gets more rain (which can effect viz). If you want a better chance of lots of diving, I'd stick to Negril.
I have been diving in Jamaica for many many years on the north coast and in Negril. The diving is about equal IMO as far as visibility and things to see. I still love both parts of the island, but when diving is an important part of what I plan to do on vacation I go to Negril. The waters along Bloody Bay and Long Bay are much calmer than anywhere on the north coast. I have had diving (and all other watersports) cancelled due to wind and waves many times when staying on the north coast, and while I know it can happen in Negril as well I have never had any dives cancelled there. So here is what I tell people who ask me....
Dives can be cancelled anywhere if there is a storm, but on average they are much less likely to be cancelled in Negril. If you go to the north coast (and we still do sometimes) be sure to do your scuba and other watersports as early in the day as you can because even without any storms as the day goes on the wind and waves increase and are more of a threat to watersports than in the morning.
Best of luck!
That was our concern - at CSS we were reg flagged most of the time. We would really like to check out CTI - but diving is also a big part of our vacation.
Thanks for the input!!
I just got back from CTI July 19-July 26. We were redflagged just July 25.
We dove twice. I have been there once before and dove then as well.
It is a highlight of my trip. Collin, Lloyd and Douglas in the dive shop are the friendliest dive masters you could ask for.
first link has scuab pics from this trip.
Second one has video at the end.
If you really want to see the difference, just look closely at the waters in both areas on Google Earth. The picture that is currently up is from January of this year. If you look closely at the shallow, diving-friendly areas along the north cost, the waters are rough right up to the shore, but when you pan over to Long Bay and Bloody Bay in the Negril area, you will see waves out in the deep waters, but in the diving areas, the water is very calm. When you land in MoBay, the water will look pretty rough, but as you get to Bloody and Long Bays, the water seriously calms down. It's much more protected.
We were not certified when we stayed at CN. We will dive in November while at CSA. We normally go to CTI. The diving is great and the dive guys are fantastic. We go in October and have always gone out. We've been out on some rough days but they will call down the coast to ask what certain areas are like and find a spot if at all possible. They dive the same areas as CSS but the boat is so much better at CTI so you can go farther afield in the time. I suppose it depends on the time of year you go but we go in hurricane season and have not had a problem..
You should try it. It's good to dive in different conditions.