This morning, we leave Mountain Point as Andy sets sail for Spanish Town, the major settlement on Virgin Gorda. We're meeting Dive BVI at their Yacht Harbour location.In addition to this location, Dive BVI is also located at Leverick Bay Resort & Marina, Little Dix Bay Resort & Spa and Scrub Island Resort & Spa, and like other dive operations in the BVI, offers rendezvous diving, whether you're located on a live-aboard or at a resort. The dive boat will either meet you at your on-water "home" or at the dock at your resort.
Our first dive is off the south side of Great Dog. The reef here, in 30 to 50 feet of water, is nice, easy diving, but the highlight is the Plane Wreck, a former inter-island commuter plane that never quite made it into the air during one take-off (no one was hurt when the pilot landed it in the water 200 yards from the runway on Beef Island). BVI dive operators persuaded the government to let them move the fuselage (no wings or engines) and sink it off Great Dog. It sits on the sand bottom in 45 or 50 feet of water and attracts a number of barracuda and reef fish. As soon as we arrive, three barracuda are there to greet us, though they don't hang around long. We play both inside and outside this surprisingly delightful wreck.
Our second dive is at Joe's Cave off West Dog, a shallow site that's known for its underwater topography, numerous large boulders that offer ledges and areas to explore. The cave itself is a triangular crack with a narrow opening at the top so it's not truly an overhead environment. There's a bit of surge, but once you get to the end, you reach a small chamber filled with glassy sweepers. Once you turn to go back, you can get really beautiful images of the light rays filtering through the opening at the top and illuminating the cave's walls and boulders. It's pretty magical.
We grab lunch back at Yacht Harbor and then catch the ferry to Road Town, so we can begin our land-based experience. We transfer to Fort Recovery Beachfront Villa and Suites Hotel, where the resort delivers on its name. About an hour after settling into our rooms in a lovely three-room villa, the resort's Pilates class gets underway on the dock. It's a gorgeous setting, with the sun slipping into the blue waters of the Caribbean as a backdrop.
At Fort Recovery, all villas are directly on the beach. Our three-bedroom condo-style villa offered three bedrooms with master baths, and oceanfront views from the living and dining area, as well as from one bedroom, plus balcony access with lots of comfy seating and room to dry and air out your scuba gear. The photo above was taken from the dock; the beach is the perfect place to relax, read a book or enjoy snorkeling.
For more on the British Virgin Islands, visit the BVI Tourist Board website.