Diving: DIVE SITES - Region 3
A detailed guide to dive sites in the Upper Caribbean region of Tobago
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Being deeper than other reefs in the area, Culloden is home to interesting reef creatures not seen on the shallower reefs. The majestic reef structure is inundated with schooling fishes. The dive meanders through shallow crevices before ending at a flat sloping reef with several old anchors of unknown origin. They could probably tell a tale or two!
There are a few dives in Castara Bay, but the most popular is at the northern point. An easy dive with some interesting rock formations. Generally easy diving.
Located at the western entrance to Englishman’s Bay, this reef, which is also known as Rum & Coke, has a profusion of soft corals and there is a fair chance of seeing turtles. It is a reasonably easy dive down a gentle slope with boulders and large coral heads. Being rockier than other bays, visibility tends to be better. The quality of the coral improves as you descend deeper. The bay is also good for snorkelling. There are lots of encrusted corals, tunicates and sponges on the rugged sides of the bay and there is always a good number of tropical fish and invertebrates.
Located at the north-eastern entrance to Englishman’s Bay, the characteristics of this dive are similar to Scotch on the Rocks. One or both of these two adjacent dives are often dived as the second dive of the day when diving The Sisters.
Sisters Rocks are promoted as being the place to see hammerheads and mantas. Both are visitors to this cluster of five rock pillars that rise from the seabed. Although hammerheads are occasionally seen at other times of the year, the most frequent sightings are between November and February. However large pelagics are not the only things to see here. The immense tier-shaped formations and dramatic structures surrounded by deep blue waters make both “In” and “Out” incredibly stunning sites. Sea whips stretch up from the deep, huge lobsters and barracuda are in abundance and don’t be surprised if the occasional turtle makes an appearance. Ranging from 50ft (15m) to the seafloor at 200ft (60m) this is an advanced dive site in the open ocean. Inner Sister is the reef on the inside of The Sisters. The entry can be rough at times, but the dive is fairly easy. The Little Sister is a submerged rock close to the main group. Diving here is advanced due to the currents and entry. The Camel’s Back is an adjacent series of rocks which loom like underwater mountains. It is normally done as a deep dive and one swims through sandy passages to navigate around them.
This is a site that in many ways is best viewed by snorkelling from the beach, rather than by diving from a boat. Bloody Bay River empties into the bay, bringing lots of fresh water from the Main Ridge mountain range. This stunts the growth of the coral, although conditions do improve as you reach the outer reaches of the bay. Some remnants of the ships destroyed in the historic battle that gave the bay its name can still be seen as odd-shaped encrusted lumps along the northern stretch. Large areas of turtle grass hide fish and invertebrate nurseries.
This group of rocks, which includes John Rock and Sleeper, is closer in to the mainland than The Sisters and provides interesting topography. The area inside the rock is just 50 feet (14m) deep, but the outside and south part of the rock is around 100 feet (30m). The rocks themselves are almost devoid of coral growth, due to the sea surge, but there is reef growth on the huge, almost rectangular, boulders on the south side and lots of holes and small caves for fish to hide in.
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