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  1. #1

    Default Night Diving/Sorkelling Info & Reviews?

    Occasionally I see posts stating that the night diving or snorkelling was lots of fun and is a must do. Can anyone elaborate on this? What marine life have you seen?
    What equipment does the resort provide you above the normal daytime dive or snorkel equipment?
    What time does the excursion leave and return to the resort (CN)?
    Was it chilly enough that you need a wetsuit to make it enjoyable?
    Was the experience worth it enough to give up the majority of an evening of your stay when you are only there for a week?
    What are the costs per person? (From reading previous posts, I understand that you can use your resort credits for a night dive or snorkel)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,299

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    We have done the night snorkeling at CSA. We left right at sunset, and it was only an hour tour, so we were able to get back for dinner with no problem.

    The only extra equipment they gave us was a large flashlight. Even then, it was difficult to see anything. We did spot several lobster. Octopus/squid are also nocturnal, but we did not see any.

    We did this in January, which is probably when the water temps are at their (relative) coolest. Since the tour goes out at sunset, the water was still plenty warm.

    I'm glad that we did it, and even though we love snorkeling, we have not done the nighttime snorkeling again, mainly because it was hard to see. The cost was $35/pp.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    1,036

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    We just did the night snorkeling at CSA. You leave just after sunset. You have fins, snorkel and mask and an underwater flashlight. They didn't make us wear the life jacket and I was very grateful for that.

    We saw squid, an octopus, a moray eel, a blow fish (up close and personal--the dive guy was holding it and would make it puff up) some sea snakes, lobster, sting rays and of course the normal stuff like sea urchins, coral, etc.

    We were not going to do the night snorkeling (cost is $35 each and we used our credits), but our friends talked us into it. I have to say it was one of the highlights of the trip! We all saw things that you can only see at night and it was a small group swimming around at night with flashlights. It was too cool and you should definitely check it out.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    916

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    This really is a must-do.

    We've done two nights dives at CN. They were both right near the entrance to Bloody Bay, I think on Fantasy Reef, but I'd need to look at the dive book on that one. It's a shallow reef, about 30 feet, because you don't need to go deep on a night dive. The cost is $50 pp.

    You go right before dusk, around 5:30p or so in November. The water is just as warm as it is during the day, but the air is cooler (low 80's, high 70's), so we bring towels to wrap in just in case. I'm usually good just throwing a t-shirt on. On the dives, we wear the same 3mm shorty wetsuits we wear during the day. The only additional equipment they provide is really the only extra thing you need, the dive light. With a dozen lights all on at once, the glow provides more light under water than you may think.

    As for your comment about using up most of the evening, the reef is a 3-minute boat ride from the beach, you're getting in within 5-10 minutes, and the dive is only 35-40 minutes. Needless to say, the whole experience is between 60 and 90 minutes.

    Night dives are awesome! At night, most of the fish go to sleep, and all of the daytime "hiders" come out. When people say they "see" stingrays, eels, lobsters, crabs, shrimp, etc, etc, they leave an important point out. During the day, the snake eels are typically the only one out swimming around. The crustaceans, spotted and green moral eels, and octopus are usually hiding, only visible under ledges or in holes, and the rays are laying flat in the sand. During the nighttime, the eels and baby rays are out swimming above the reef, while the octopus, squid, and crustaceans are all out crawling around the top of the reef. The daytime fish are sleeping close to the bottom.

    We have several friends who have done the night snorkeling with similar reviews, but it goes to different reefs. The cost for night snorkel is $35 pp.

    Try it!
    "Brutalize me with music..."

    CN: 11/2007, 11/2010, 11/2011, 11/2013

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Posts
    708

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    Glad we did the night snorkel but wouldn't do it again .... Husband loved it .... Me, not so much. We were gone from the time it got dark (not sure what time we left but the sun was totally gone & the lights of the resorts on Bloody Bay were on) until close to 9:00 pm. By the time we got showered afterwards, it was getting so late that I went to dinner with my hair wet because didn't have time to dry it or do anything with it. The snorkel itself was OK & we did see some things that you don't see during the day but for me it was a little creepy being out in the ocean at night where if you drifted off from the group, it was pretty darned dark .... One of the group lost their flashlight the very first thing so make sure it's around your wrist tight. Ended up all the women in the group except me, as well as one guy, got stung by jelly fish .... It was impossible to stay away from them when you couldn't really even see them until it was too late. All of us ladies got back on the boat & waited for the guys to finish after that. It was nice hanging out on the boat listening to music in the dark, looking at the resort lights along the beach. Like I said - I'm glad I did it but I won't do it again.
    Julie

  6. #6

    Default

    Thanks for the info. Sounds like an interesting experience and an opportunity to see lots of new marine life.

    I understand that the resort has a no tipping policy other than a few exceptions but I am just wondering if it is customary or expected for you to tip the crew or dive master since this is not an AI included activity, even though it is the Couples sports centre staff?

    How far in advance do you normally have to sign up?
    On average, how many divers\snorkelers go or is there a different maximum ratio (DiversM) since it is at night with reduced visibility?
    What minimum number guests do they typically need before they will take you out either diving or snorkeling?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    916

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    No, they are still Couples staff, so the no-tipping policy still applies.

    The night dive and night snorkel are two separate trips and go out on different boats. I'm not sure about the snorkeling, but usually the diving works like this:

    There is a whiteboard on the north side of the dive shack that people can write messages on. At any given time, any certified diver can start a list of people interested in a night dive, and will obviously start with his/her name. As people are interested, they add their names to the list, and I believe they look for about 8 people before they will schedule the dive. It's a fairly loose, laid-back system (just like everything else in Jamaica), but that's kind of how it has to be, since they have no way of knowing how many people would be interested at any given time. So, when you get there, check out the whiteboard. If there is no list, start one. If there is a list, put your name on it, and they will let you know when they are planning to go out.

    In our 3 trips to CN, we have never seen it reach dive boat capacity, which is 16 divers. Frankly, at night, the more the merrier. The more lights, the better the visibility, and the dive shop will staff with as many instructors/divemasters as they need to keep an eye on everyone. And, just to reiterate, there is obviously reduced visibility, but you can see quite a bit more than you think. When I did my AOW, it was in a lake in Nebraska in late October. 7mm full wetsuits with hoodies and gloves, groups of 4, and we did our navigation and search & recovery dives in the dark in 40-degree lake water. We saw a channel catfish and a couple crappie. Needless to say, the night diving in Negril is very different.

    Again, I haven't done the night snorkel, but based on the size of the boat, it is probably no more than 10-12 guests at a time.

    Enjoy! We will be doing our third night dive at CN in less than 5 weeks!!!
    "Brutalize me with music..."

    CN: 11/2007, 11/2010, 11/2011, 11/2013

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Posts
    18

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    We did it for the first time last visit to CN. Went into the water with the high intensity lights they give you and must have dropped right into a very large mass of neon tetra looking fish. Absolute awesome! You have to stay together rather than go where you want on a day snorkel trip, but if the staff see's something cool they shake their lights so everyone can gather around and see it. My wife was a little frightened at first and clung pretty close. At one point I had to stop and ask her not to keep grabbing my trunks. Turned out it was someone else's wife and she thought I was her hubby..... at least that's my story. For real, the trip is well worth the money, and we plan on doing it at least once on our next trip, maybe more.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2009
    Posts
    952

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    As a dive master who has led many night trips for first timers, the one thing I always loved to do with planning in advance, was to get the group in a circle holding hands and then have them turn off their lights one by one, till I was the only one left. Then turn that off for about 15 seconds, a squeeze of the hand was the signal to turn them back on and look around, sometimes you see some interesting creatures that way if you are quick. Of course, the affect was not as good when we made them wear light sticks on the tank valve so no one would get lost. One of the most fun night dives I ever made was with a friend, his wife and my wife. We did a beach dive at Grand Cayman off of 7 mile beach in about 15-20 feet of water, and just a few coral heads in the area. It lasted well over an hour and we played with Octopus almost the entire time. One even went between my wife's tank pack and her wet suit. I laughed so hard I had to surface. In that time only 1 Octopus even squirted ink, so I guess they were use to visitors. What fun.

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