Tropic Air was gracious enough to invite us to experience the Blue Hole by air. This is an adventure we were all too eager to experience. The Great Blue Hole is one of the main reasons that thrill seekers, and divers flock to Belize from all walks of the world. Inscribed a World Heritage Site in 1996, this mystery of this massive blue expanse continues to awe the most experienced!
We got to Tropic Air around 10:30 for an 11AM take off. This tour caters to guests from both San Pedro and Caye Caulker. Within 10 minutes, we were landing on Caye Caulker’s little landing strip to pick up some other guests.
Once our group was completed, our adventure began. From Caye Caulker, we make our way to a south easterly direction. The crystal clear turquoise water made way for the abundance of turtle grass that populate the fore reef. Then as the world’s second largest Barrier Reef becomes the main item – the expanse of the white crests as the larger waves hit the Barrier Reef seem to extend well into the horizon.
The depth of the water is indicative by the various degrees of blue as we made our way further, leaving the comfort of the shore line behind. In the horizon, the dotted land mass comes into view. The first atoll to appear is Turneffe. This picturesque group of small Caribbean islands about 20 miles from Belize’s coast line provides for awe inspiring photo op as well as world class fishing and diving.
About 30 minutes after take-off The Great Blue Hole comes into view. The Great Blue Hole is pretty much a gigantic sinkhole located near the center of Lighthouse Reef. Divers, snorkelers and visitors to this world heritage site are amazed by the 300 meters or approximately 1000 feet diameter of this circular wander.
The Blue Hole measures some 124 metres or approximately 400 feet deep and only few can boast actually diving to its bottom. After circling the blue hole a couple times, we make our way north – or is it south? – at this point I’m somewhat disoriented. In the distance we see this lil wreck literally sitting on the edge of Lighthouse Atoll about 5 minutes from the Blue Hole. This is the remains of what used to be a British Cargo Ship.
After this, we make a second fly over the Great Blue Hole, this time we make about 5 rounds circling the hole. Then it’s time to return home.
The distance to the blue hole has always been an obstacle. The blue hole is about two and a half hours away from San Pedro with a combined boat time of about five hours. Now, thanks to Tropic Air, now you can experience the Blue Hole, minus the five hours travel time!
As the Blue Hole disappeared behind us, I couldn’t help but feeling excited. I had dove the Great Blue Hole several times before, but never before had I been able to grasp the true beauty of the hole as I have while flying over it.