West Caicos

This is Victor taking a photo of a Nassau Grouper.

Boat Cove (aka RGI), West Caicos, Turks and Caicos

Boat Cove (a.k.a Rock Garden Interlude or RGI)

The name of this dive site comes from the break in the rocky coastline that totally looks like the shape of the bow of a vessel. Rumours go around that pirates originally created the depression in the shoreline, but nobody really knows. You can easily snorkel to shore from the mooring line during low tide and climb up onto the rocky ledge and jump from the cove’s cliffs which are about 10-15 feet in height. The dive site is a very popular one because of the wide variety of places to explore. Divers can enjoy gorgeous wall dives both north and south along the wall as well as lots of “play time” in the 40-55 foot range on top of the wall. The reef on the top edge of the wall is full of life with many Spotted Morays, Hawksbill Turtles, dancing Spiny Lobsters, and not to mention the vast quantity of juvenile fish darting about the reef. Spend more time in the sandy area to observe Southern Stingrays and Garden Eels too.

Elephant Ear Canyon

This is a very special dive site found on the very tip of West Caicos island. The topography is what makes this dive site so undeniably attractive. The top of the reef is on the deep side starting at between 60-65 feet and then dropping down. As you make your way down, you will discover the giant orange Elephant Ear Sponge that this dive site is named for; supposedly they are flap in strong currents like an elephant’s ears, but I have yet to notice the comparison! Swim south along the wall and you will see the vast expanse of wall that juts out and cascades down and just seems endless in every direction. Take your time and watch your max depth to take in all that this site has to offer. If you are a tiny creature fanatic then skip the wall entirely and head east towards the shallows which are chock full of eel grass. There you will discover the tiny colourful treasures called Head Shield Slugs. Such an ugly name for a spectacular creature from the nudibranch family.

Magic Mushroom

Barrel Sponge Threesome!

Magic Mushroom, West Caicos, Turks and Caicos

This is a delightful dive site with a vibrant top reef and a magnificent wall just off of West Caicos Island.  It is named “Magic Mushroom” because of the mushroom shaped rock that pokes out from the water near the shoreline, which is most visible at low tide.  In addition, I think that this dive site has a magical vibe to it too!  Just north-west of the mooring line you can find a bizarre looking Barrel Sponge threesome that has grown upwards of 15-20 feet tall as well as wide!  On top of the reef which lies in about 50ft of water, you will find lots of sand with dots of coral mountains.  Follow a sandy channel west towards the wall keeping an eye out for darting Southern Stingrays.  Once you are at the edge of the wall around 75 feet and start to descend down it, you will be blown away by the extensive variety of corals and sponges hanging off of it.  One tube sponge in particular looks similar to the trunk of an elephant just covers the wall.  There are plenty of ledges for lobsters and crabs to hide in as well.  Swimming north along the wall at about 115 – 120 feet you will come across a giant orange Elephant Ear Sponge which is pretty neat to look at.  On your way back to the mooring, follow the sandy edge of the top reef where you will find some Nassau Grouper cleaning stations.