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Returned from the sunny isle of Tobago last week thought I would post a little report as requested by Bren.

Trip down From Scotland at 6.15 from Edinburgh on BA went without a hitch despite the forecasted snow.
Caught the Virgin atlantic flight to Tobago healthy baggage allowance of 32kg per head most welcome,and may i add even told us we could take 1 more piece of baggage as divers(my missus becomes one every time we venture abroad helps fit her hairdryer in)I needed to pay 50 quid each way to get legroom but hey what price comfort.

We stayed at the Grand Courlan.Its a spa resort and I was able to swop my treatments for dives(3) not the promised (5)
As for the hotel no complaints really nice staff too,with no looking for tips right left and center.

Now for the diving,my first dive with Eco divers which is at the foot of hill next to the beach in front of The Grand Courlan was a try out which in my opinion is only right. 17 mtr max on a dive called Mt irvine extention.There was plenty of coral certainly more than on some other islands in the Carribean plus good sized fish,after 45 mins we surfaced and I was informed much to my delight that I was able to dive on all the sites that the shop did.

After speaking to Bren before going i was hopeful of doing Speyside. My wish was granted next day a 2 tank dive first on the superb Bookends.This dive had quite a bit of current on it,perhaps 4-5 knots i loved it but it wasnt for everyone,I was delighted to see a lemon shark around 5 feet in length + tarpon near the end of this dive.
Next dive was on Coral garden this is the dive with the massive Brain coral,really nice but give me bookends once more.loads of fish +a stingray.
Next day i dived Mt Irvine wall near the hotel to be honest i was dissapointed perhaps because of the prevous days dive but again plenty of colurful coral and shoals of smaller fish it was like being in a bait ball from the blue planet.
Next dive was another Bren recommendation. Sisters.
It was a really rough boat trip of 50 mins up the coast to this site and shall i say there were a few fish feeders on this trip.
I was paired up with Wolfgang(yes hes German)great diver who had dived here before he had informed me that there might be a chance of hammerheads.
We all  got in the water and settled in for what i hoped was going to be the dive of a lifetime for me,firstly we came across two huge stingrays doing what they do best lazing about on the sandy bottom.My attention was then drawn by the divemasters rattle he had spotted sharks unfortunately by the time i had finned over there i had missed them,to say i was gutted was understatment of the year.By this time some of the group had to go up being low on air,Wolfgang and I still had 130 bar left.Then another rattle from the dm,this time i was ready .....Out of the gloom(viz was only 10 mtrs) i saw my first ever Hammerhead ,then another, until around 15 of these wonderful creatures were in my sights.My heart was beating with excitement this was trully my finest dive ever, to see these creatures at such a close distance in their natural enviroment words cannot describe.I surfaced ten minutes later after seeing them once more on our saftey stop to the words of Wolfgang  (Wunderbar)
Next dive on Sisters again but no Sharks this time, bit of a short surface interval meant a short dive but still with a huge grin from the dive before.

To sum up : Lovely Island,laid back until Sunday School(booze up with the locals)
First class diving. If you like drifts get a trip up to or stay near Speyside.
I have travelled to quite a few Islands around the Carribean this one has the best(so far ) diving,enjoy it while it stays like this
   Nikk
 

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[b said:
Quote[/b] (nikk @ Feb. 07 2004,23:48)]I have travelled to quite a few Islands around the Carribean this one has the best(so far ) diving,enjoy it while it stays like this
   Nikk
I definitely agree with that. If I went back to the Caribbean, it would have to be to Tobago. Far better than all the other islands I've been to. Glad you had a good trip. Thanks for sharing it with us.
 

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Hey Mike,

You beat me mate - I never saw Hammers at Sisters!! You jammy swine!
What did you think of the Barrel Corals at Mount Irvine Extension? Spectacular, no? Did you do the swims-though? OK, she's not a deep dive at about 14 metres to the sand, but the caves and constantly changing currents (taking you to different parts of the reef with no effort) make her an interesting wet.

Seriously, glad you had a good one (and packed so much into just one week!) and yes, the drifts are quite something else, ain't they?!  


Welcome back and hope to see you on a wet soon to exchange notes.

Cheers,
 

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Nice report M8 I will be putting this on my To Do list


Mark Chase
 

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Nice report Mike.

I'm planning on going to Tobago this summer with the wife and kids. Will probably go in the hotel next to yours (Grafton Beach Resort?) as it sounds like there's more things there that will keep the rest of them happy while I go diving. And it's cheaper!

Hope I get to see some hammerheads too. Can't wait.

Jez.
 

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Sounds like you had a great time.  I was out in Speyside in November and didn't see hammerheads at the Sisters, but we did see a lone one at another site where we also encountered a huge Manta Ray.  Amazing diving, great locals, fab vibe.
 
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