Scuba Diving

An extensive reef system runs along Little Bahama Bank's edge; sea gardens, caves, and colorful reefs rim the bank all the way from the West End to Freeport–Lucaya and beyond. The variety of dive sites suits everyone from the novice to the advanced diver, and ranges from 10 to 100-plus feet deep. Many dive operators offer a "discover" or "resort" course where first-timers can try out open-water scuba diving with a short pool course and an instructor at their side.

Caribbean Divers. This family-owned-and-operated dive shop offers personalized and uncrowded trips to coral reefs, wrecks, tunnels, and caverns, as well as shark dives. They also rent equipment and offer NAUI, PADI, and SSI instruction. A resort course allows you to use equipment in a pool and then in a closely supervised open dive. The professionally trained dive staff has more than 30 years of experience and the boat resides right on the channel leading out to the sea, so rides to most major sites are about 5–10 minutes. Lodging packages with Bell Channel Inn are available, in addition to snorkeling trips and private charters. Bell Channel Inn, King Rd., Lucaya, Grand Bahama Island. 242/373–9111; 242/373–9112; www.bellchannelinn.com. Daily 8–5.

Sunn Odyssey Divers. This family-run shop has been on island for more than 20 years. You'll dive with the owner himself, who caters to smaller dive groups for a more personalized experience. Full PADI certifications available. Beach Way Dr., Williams Town, Grand Bahama Island. 242/373--4014; 866/652--3483; www.sunnodysseydivers.com.

UNEXSO. This world-renowned scuba-diving facility provides rental equipment, guides, and boats. Facilities include a 17-foot-deep training pool with windows that look out on the harbor, changing rooms and showers, docks, an outdoor bar and grill, and an air-tank filling station. Daily dive excursions range from one-day discovery courses and dives, to specialty shark, dolphin, and cave diving. Both the facility and its dive masters have been featured in international and American magazines for their work with sharks and cave exploration. UNEXSO and its sister company, the Dolphin Experience, are known for their work with Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Port Lucaya, Lucaya, Grand Bahama Island. 242/373–1244; 800/992–3483; www.unexso.com.

Viva Dive Shop, a Reef Oasis Diving Center. Part of the Reef Oasis Dive Club, this shop offers daily dives and snorkels to various reefs and wrecks on a large boat seating 21 divers straight off of Fortune Beach at Viva Wyndham Fortuna Resort. This professional PADI-licensed shop also offers certifications for all levels (all equipment is included). Viva Wyndham Fortuna Resort, Churchill and Doubloon Rd., Lucaya, Grand Bahama Island. 242/441--6254; www.reefoasisdiveclub.com.

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