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Caribbean Explorer II


The first liveaboard dive boat to offer regular access to the world-famous Saba Marine Park and St. Kitts, the original Caribbean Explorer explored the waters of the Northeastern Caribbean from 1987 until her replacement by the upgraded Caribbean Explorer II in February, 2003.  The vessel departs on alternating Saturdays from St. Maarten and Basseterre, St. Kitts.

Since the inception in 1995 of Rodale's Scuba Diving's Reader Survey Awards, the Caribbean Explorer rated in the top ten liveaboard dive boats worldwide in terms of customer service, and was ranked the best dive operation in the world in 1996 - we're very much looking forward to the new, upgraded vessel continuing this excellent tradition!

A crew of seven, including 4 dive instructors, caters to the needs of our 18 guests each week. 9 air-conditioned double staterooms on board each have private lavatory, flush toilet and shower; most have queen beds with a twin bed option, as well (see the vessel diagram for details).

Five dives are scheduled every day, in addition to optional island tours.  All diving is done directly off of the vessel, using the expansive dive deck which covers the aft third of the main deck.  Each diver has his or her own dive gear bin; a large camera table, as well as rinse tanks, wetsuit drying racks, charging stations and the like are available for all to use.  Nitrox is available; tanks are filled in place between each dive, so that there is never any need to disassemble your gear.

A large semi-enclosed salon serves as the main gathering place for meals, slide shows and movies; aft of the salon, the sundeck provides a large area and lounge chairs to relax and soak up the rays.

E-6 processing is available, as is nitrox training, PADI scuba courses and dive gear and computer rental.Saba's volcanic origins have blessed her waters with spectacular formations and structural diversity. From shallow patch reefs to deep water seamounts, Saba offers interesting diving at each depth and for every level diver.

It's small size (only 5 square miles), and circular shape does not grant a large leeward side but allows diving almost any day of the year even with less than perfect weather. Your local dive guides will take you to the best dive site for the day's conditions and your diving ability. With the variety of diving offered, planning at least a few days diving is advised to enjoy a real sampling of this special place.

Not far offshore, Saba's famous Pinnacles, 3rd Encounter, Twilight Zone, Outer Limits and Shark Shoals (think of them as small underwater mountains) rise abruptly from the depths to within 85â of the surface. The depths of these reefs have protected them from any natural storm damage (and, of course no anchors) so the size and abundance of large sea fans and sponges put the pinnacles at world class status even without the bonus of creatures and fish. The structures themselves are something not to be missed with the most unique being The Eye of the Needle, off in the blue from 3rd Encounter. Itâs common to encounter schools of tropical fish, jacks, groupers or a memger of our robust shark population. White tips, black tips, reef and bull sharks are seen regularly both in the singular and plural. The lucky ones get to swim with a humpback whale, manta ray, hammerhead or whale shark. Although these dive sites are virtually bottomless, they can be safely enjoyed with 100-120' profiles.

Caribbean Explorer II Deck Plans

Upper Deck

Upper DeckThe upper deck features a large sunning area with comfortable lounge chairs and chairs, and a covered open-air salon (air-conditioned as needed) with entertainment center, seating areas and wet bar.

Main Deck

Upper DeckThe aft half of the main deck is where diving operations take place. The dive deck is equipped with individual gear lockers, camera table, recharging stations, air filling station, tank racks and separate freshwater rinse baths for dive equipment and cameras, as well as wetsuit hanging area and freshwater showers.  There are two ladders leading down to the dive platform itself, where two in-water ladders hang for easy access to and from the water. The staterooms forward consist of:

Master Stateroom (1, 2, and 3) - Queen beds, window, cabinet, private bathroom.
Twin Stateroom (4) - Upper and lower twin beds, window, cabinet, private bathroom.

Lower Deck

Lower Deck The lower deck contains the machinery spaces, E-6 processing lab, crew's quarters, and 5 air conditioned staterooms. The staterooms consist of:

Owner's Staterooms (5, 6) - Two twin beds (or one queen bed), private bathroom, portholes, cabinet.
Double/Twin Staterooms (7, 8, 9) - Double lower and twin upper beds, private bathroom, cabinet (Stateroom 7 has a double bed only).

Name:

M/V Caribbean Explorer II

Registry:

Belize, C.A.

Boatmaker:

Camcraft, 1978

Recommissioned:

1999

Construction:

All aluminum

L.O.A.:

115 ft

L.W.L.:

101 ft

Beam:

25 ft

Draft:

7.5 ft maximum

Displacement:

173 gross tons/66 net tons

Maximum Speed:

12 knots

Maximum Range:

1000 nautical miles

Engines:

2 GM 12 V 71 diesel main engines, 400 hp. each

Generators:

1 GM 671 Diesel producing 110 V AC/220 V AC, 75 KW capacity; 1 GM 371 Diesel producing 110 V AC/220 V AC, 45 KW capacity

Fuel Capacity:

2,500 gallons

Freshwater Supply:

2 Reverse Osmosis watermakers, 1,200 gallon per day total, 1,500 gallon storage

Air Systems:

2 Bauer K-14 9.7 cfm compressors, electric, with cascade-type storage banks, located in engine room. Undersea Breathing Systems nitrox membrane, producing 32% nitrox, bank storage.

Electricity:

220 V and 110 V AC power (110 V AC 3 prong grounded outlets in all cabins and heads)

On the Bridge:

36 mile Furuno radar with proximity alarm
Global Positioning System (GPS) with location alarm
Digital Depth sounder/bottom recorder with alarm
Weather facsimile machine
SSB Radiotelephone and VHF radios
Engine and bilge alarms
Internal PA and intercom system
Cellular telephone with data link
Satellite

Heads:

One on dive deck; private facilities in each stateroom.

Accommodations:

18 passengers in 9 staterooms, all w/private vanities and toilet facilities. Up to 8 staff in crews' quarters.

Safety Equipment:

Life rafts (4), life rings/strobes (4), life vests/strobes (25), emergency position locator, flares, oxygen and first aid equipment

Other Equipment:

Full service all electric galley and refrigeration
Scotsman Ice Flaker
Stereo audio system, upper deck: CD, DVD, VHS
Full service E-6 color film processing lab
Recharging station for strobes, batteries, etc.
Extensive array of professional audio/visual editing, dubbing and special effects systems

Tender:

16-foot rigid hull inflatable (25 hp. engine) used for passenger transport

Accessories:

Photo Equipment
Diving Equipment