In May 2016 I spent a highly enjoyable week aboard Tortuga, a “110-foot double deck boat hotel” in the Jardines de la Reina marine park, about 50 miles south of the Cuban mainland. Two boats were used to ferry divers from Tortuga to the nearby dive sites and naturally guests were divided into two groups. “The Brits” were allocated to one boat but as a 50% Brit I guess I did not qualify for this boat. Instead I joined four very friendly Israelis Eyal Keltsh, Tzlil Gurfinkel, Uri Shpeks and Raz aboard Mares III.
With so much hype in the diving industry I always deliberately keep my expectations low when trying out a new location but there was no need in this case. The diving was just superb. In clear warm blue water we swam with Saltwater Crocodiles, Barracuda, Tarpon, Caribbean reef, Nurse and Silky sharks and our excellent Dive Master Gualberto Morales ensured that we had plenty of close encounters. A great week – a trip I heartily recommend.