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“Best Vacation I ever had”

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Turneffe Island Resort
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Turneffe Island
Certificate of Excellence
Port Saint Lucie, Florida
Level 5 Contributor
84 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 45 helpful votes
“Best Vacation I ever had”
Reviewed 29 November 2011

I found this resort in PADI dive magazine and checked it out - the pictures looked great -the experience was unbelievable - if you take one vacation in your life and you are a diver - this is it! Hands down no doubt about it - IT was amazing - we were treated like kings and I dont say that lightly - the food was superb - every meal was well planned and beautifully presented and tasted great. No beanies and weenies - every meal from breakfast to snacks were delicious. The staff are totally committed and most have been there 5, 7 10+ years - and everyone one of them went out of their way to ensure every person had a great time. The diving - BEST I have ever had - 2 and 3 trips a day culminating at the Blue hole - which was just unreal. Dont let experienced diver tell you its not worth it - IT IS! Sure its deep and you only get 7mins for no-deco - but it is amazing. And the sea life around Turneffe is so diverse and the you are 5-10mins away - thats it - no wasting time tooling around off gassing on surface - back to the island to off gas and eat and then out again! The managers - Maya and her husband Alain have been there less than 3 months now but are a great team - they are totally in sync with the staff and the guests are there to make you happy and they DID! You cannot go wrong - I have been all over the Caribbean - this was the BEST vacation of my life. Everything - everything was just perfect!

Room Tip: There are no bad rooms - there are 21 huts and they all fact the ocean - and get the morning sunrise...
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with family
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Helpful?
6 Thank caribbean_joe007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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396 reviews from our community

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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (139)
Date | Rating
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  • Any
English first
Apple Valley, California
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 November 2011

This was one of the best experiences for a group of 17 family members traveling together. The food was fabulous. The diving was great. The staff was marvelous and everyone was trying to make the stay wonderful. It had a very warm and inviting feeling there. The staff and the people staying there all became fun friends. I would recommend this to everyone and anyone interested in a beautiful experience.

Room Tip: All the rooms have a beautiful ocean view and are very clean. We were in the single story rooms. I...
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank fourformommy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Los Angeles, California
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 November 2011

Our family just returned from a week with Turneffe Island. We take 2 to 3 trips every year and are very experienced travelers. We think this is one of the best places that we have ever stayed. We were shocked at the value of this vacation. It was truly 5 star quality for a very very very reasonable price......we got much more than our money's worth on this trip. The service and accomodations are of the highest quality. The food was to die for....high quality and very delicious and always more than you could possibly eat.

If you want a great experience from start to finish, book a week at Turneffe. You will have an amazing experience.

  • Stayed November 2011, travelled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank Experienced_Travel00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hamilton, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 November 2011

After weeks of research, my husband and I decided to go to TIR for our 20th anniversary. We could not have been happier with our decision. From the surreal beauty of this private island paradise, to top-notch service, TIR is THE place to go for a fantastic dive vacation! I almost don't want to tell everyone how great it was for fear that it will become too popular!

Mangers Alain and Maia, and the rest of the staff at TIR, really do go out of their way to make your stay the most memorable ever! All of the staff we came into regular contact with learned our names very quickly and what we liked to drink, etc. I've never experienced such personal service anywhere. They even put a bottle of champagne in our room on the day of our anniversary!

A few tips for those who decide to go to TIR:

-Take some Dramamine before you get on the boat to the island if you're prone to seasickness. A good stretch of the boat ride is on open ocean, without benefit of the calming effects of the many islands, so it can get a little rough in less-than-perfect weather.

-Bring your bug spray and use it! They do spray for mosquitos, but there's nothing to be done about the sand flies; they have such a short life cycle. They do rake the sand to try to kill the eggs, but if there's lots of rain or cloud cover, this doesn't do anything to decrease their numbers.

-Be prepared to gain a couple of pounds! The food is great, and plentiful; you can have seconds (or thirds!) of anything, even the lobster tails. Desserts are delicious and the homemade cookies are dangerously good and seem to replenish themselves magically!

-Be prepared to make friends. With so few guests (there were only 18 guests for the first half of the week, and 16 for the second half) it's inevitable that you'll start to feel like you've known each other for ages! We met so many interesting people, so don't be intimidated by the "family style" dining.

-If you're Canadian (like us!) and craving a Bloody Caesar, order a Bloody Mary; they make them with V8, so it's as close as you're gonna get to the real thing! Cheryl made them awesome!

-If you're at TIR to dive, it could be a good idea to take a Nitrox course beforehand. We didn't use Nitrox ourselves, and noticed the nitrogen built up quickly, especially on 3-dive days. Dives are long, most close to 60 minutes, because they're not cheap with the air-fills. We started all of our dives with at least 3200 psi. Watch your computer closely and compensate on your depth accordingly!

-For anyone who thinks that drinks and sodas are expensive, please try to recognize the cost and difficulty of supplying such a remote location. It's not like they can just drive down the street to the supermarket. All of the supplies get to the island on the same 1 1/2hr. boat ride as the guests. We even had ice cream one night!

Thank-you so much to Alain and Maia, and all of our other friends at TIR for making this the best vacation we've ever had! It's going to be so hard to top this trip, so I guess we'll just have to go back!

Room Tip: All of the rooms are basically the same. If cost is an issue, the rooms in the "lodge" ar...
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
7 Thank DiveAndSkiDiva
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Incline Village, Nevada
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 November 2011

My husband and I were 100% impressed and delighted with this top-notch dive location. We
had read about it but still were not prepared for the beauty, the pampering, the overall excellence of this resort. Our dive masters were attentive but not overbearing, they were extremely knowledgeable and helpful at all times. The food was excellent, even preparing special needs foods. And coffee or tea delivered to your screened in porch every AM. Ahh.
We were only sorry we hadn't booked for the whole week. However, we are already planning to return! This is a private island paradise!

Room Tip: Every room is beautiful, varnished wood interiors, fluffy beds, QUIET! It was not fully booked while...
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  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank bajawood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Carlos, California
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 October 2011

Since I left my review of our stay at the TIR last July, I have noticed that although over 400 people read it, only two said it was helpful. I thought that now would be a good time to pass on the most helpful advice I could offer anyone staying at this resort. We thought it was a good value for the money and would definitely stay there again. However, I believe that this island has a mosquito issue, so be prepared to get bitten.They sprayed once during the week we were there which helped a little. You should bring your own repellent as it is pricey to buy a can at the resort. Also bring Benadryl gel; this soothes bites better than anything else I've used. I was bitten on the eyelid and lip while asleep and walked around with a puffy face for a day or so. Another guest there offered me this tip: whenever she plans to travel to mosquito territories, she takes an antihistamine each day for a week prior to departure. You might still get bit, but it won't swell up like mine did.
I hope this additional advice is helpful.

Room Tip: We liked our cabana close to the dive shop.
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  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
18 Thank DNikki
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Oklahoma
Level 6 Contributor
161 reviews
72 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 68 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 September 2011

Our group spent a week at this historic resort located on the southern end of Turneffe atoll. It is a tastefully decorated property with friendly and helpful staff, great food and good diving. The resort also is a fishing destination for sport fishermen seeking bonefish, tarpon, permit, and offshore species.
The facility was constructed many years ago and continues to sparkle with its emphasis on ocean views, white sand, and mahogany based decor. Beautiful mahogany paneling in every room and the lodge/dining room, coconut trees scattered throughout the white sand 12 acre island, wonderful outside bar (wood decor), and relaxing freshwater pool. Free access to a hobie cat catamaran and kayaks were fun to add to the exploration list. No phones or television and limited computer access kept out distractions from the outside world.

The food was very good and plentiful. Breakfasts were prepared to your tastes with omlets, tropical fruits, and homemade breads every day. Lunches were varied and always good. Dinners were always prepared family style with frequent Belizean entrees, plenty of salads, and wonderful desserts. Some of it was spicy but there was always alternatives to select.

The diving was very good but they do only three dives per day on most days. The divemasters were excellent and always helpful. Dive sites are only minutes away from the resort so the boats are small, no shade, and back rolls required on entry. Almost all dives are drift dives but we experienced very little current the whole week which explained why the visibility for this trip was only around 50-60 ft. The critters were plentiful with many eels, lobsters, big turtles, some eagle rays and sharks, and the usual assortment of tropical reef fish. We also found several white-lined toadfish, which are only found offshore Belize.

One day is spent at the Blue Hole, Half Moon Caye, and Long Caye. This is signature Belize diving at its best and a great experience for even veteran divers. We saw several sharks in the Blue Hole, had excellent clarity on the walls at Half Moon Caye with eagle rays swimming along the walls, and several big tarpon working schools of silversides at Long Caye. Visibility was outstanding at over 100 ft.

The staff and transportation to the island were excellent. Everyone was very friendly and helpful. They really made us feel at home and it just added to the ambiance of the resort.

This was a fun trip and I would highly recommend it for those interested in a true Caribbean island experience and not just hardcore diving or fishing.

  • Stayed August 2011, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
10 Thank Bill D47
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Turneffe Island Resort

Property: Turneffe Island Resort
Address: Turneffe Atoll, Turneffe Island, Belize
Phone Number:
Region: Belize > Belize Cayes > Turneffe Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 Hotels in Turneffe Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Turneffe Island Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Turneffe Island Resort is a secluded 14-acre private island located 35 miles off the coast of Belize. We offer 7 night, 4-night, and 3-night Diving, Fishing and Resort packages. Packages include airport transfers, deluxe lodge accommodations, scheduled activities, all meals and hors d’oeuvres served throughout the day. All accommodations are located on white sandy beaches. All rooms include indoor and outdoor showers and spectacular ocean views. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Turneffe Island Hotel Turneffe Islands
Turneffe Island Lodge

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