The term liveaboard is pretty self explanatory: it’s a boat for scuba diving in which guests sleep on board, unlike a day boat operation. The benefits include time to travel to more distant dive sites, companionship of other divers and in the case of Blackbeard’s Cruises, a significant savings in cost.
For $899USD, you get 7 nights accommodation, 3 meals a day, unlimited beer and liquor, and an average of three dives a day. For an idea of how good of a deal that is, in Nassau a land based dive operation charges $109 for a two-tank dive trip.
So what’s the catch? How about a 65’ boat divided by 22 passengers, 5 crew, and 1 leaching stowaway (that would be me). Did I mention that there is one shower and three toilets for that group? Good thing divers do their peeing in their wetsuits!
While I was still on a high from our casino win, it was time to get unpacked and “nest” for the week at sea. Now I’m not here to brag, but I am going to show you some photos of our very luxurious accommodations.
Our “room” was not only spacious but also very bright and had great views!
When I emerged from the cave, I met the rest of the passengers. The main group was from a dive shop in Alabama joined by 5 independent travelers. The group is young and upbeat and I start to think New Year’s Eve is going to be a pretty good time! The boat pushes off around 4 and the captain decides it’s too late for a dive so we head straight to the Exuma Cays.
It’s a chilly and lovely evening as everyone chats in that super friendly and slightly awkward way that you do when you first meet. I am surprised by how cold it is while the boat is moving… I can’t believe I’m wearing a jacket and scarf in the Bahamas! All is forgiven though when I look up and see the sky. Out in the middle of the ocean with no land in sight, the only lights you see are stars. We’re off to a great start.
Crappy photo but at least I’m in it. Priorities, you know.