Diving Roundabout can be done as a first deep dive or second shallow dive on the north wall.  I have been diving on this site many times as a second shallow dive site and it is quite enjoyable.  You will find it has good variety of marine species and an interesting topology.  The site is an easy ride out of Safe Harbor, but remember it can get rough on the north side.

Diving Roundabout, Grand Cayman (Steven W Smeltzer)

Roundabout, Grand Cayman

The site has a good variety of soft and hard corals and normally it has an abundant variety of marine species.  The downside is that the site can also be a bit turbid after hard rains.  This is due to the close proximity of the site to the cuts in the reef from the North Sound.  When it rains there can be a good deal of runoff from the north sound that tends to cloud the dive site.

Diving Roundabout is usually a very relaxing and interesting dive.  If you are diving this site as a shallow or top of the wall dive, you will have plenty of time to explore.

Diving Roundabout Rating: 3.18 out of 5

  • Visibility – Good to very good
  • Access – Moderate, boat only, about 45 minutes from Safe Haven harbor (Note it can be fairly rough on the North Wall and regularly has low swells so take precautions if you tend to get seasick)
  • Current – moderate to strong most of time
  • Depth to 100 ft / 30 m
  • Reef health Hard / Soft Corals – Good
  • Sponges / Plants – Good
  • Marine species variety – Good
  • Pelagics / Mammals / Turtles / Rays – minimal typically 1 to 3 sightings on a dive
Diving Roundabout, Grand Cayman (Steven W Smeltzer)

Hawksbill Turtle, Eretmochelys imbriocota, Grand Cayman

When diving Roundabout you will typically find sea turtles, such as the Hawksbill, or Green Sea Turtle.   You can distinguish the Hawksbill from the Green Sea Turtle by looking at its head and the plates between its eyes.  The Hawksbill has 2 sets of plates.  There are 2 plates between the eyes and 2 plates just above its beak or bill.  The Green Sea Turtle just has two plates between its eyes.

Diving Roundabout, Grand Cayman (Steven W Smeltzer)

Soft Corals,Roundabout, Grand Cayman

Diving Roundabout, Grand Cayman (Steven W Smeltzer)

Princess Parrotfish, Scarus taeniopterus, Grand Cayman

You will also see a variety of parrotfishes, such as the Princes Parrotfish or Stoplight Parrotfish.  There is also a variety of of small oval type fishes such as the Barred Hamlet. If you look closely in the crevices within the coral reef you will find a variety of crustaceans and juvenile fish species.  There are typically a number of spiny lobsters, along with cleaner shrimp and wrasses offering their services at a variety of cleaning stations.

Diving Roundabout, Grand Cayman (Steven W Smeltzer)

Lettuce Coral, Agaricia agaricites, Grand Cayman

You will occasionally see a nurse shark or ray cruising the sand channels between the reef.  There are always a good number of smaller marine species about, you just have to go slowly and look diligently.

Diving Roundabout, Grand Cayman (Steven W Smeltzer)

Green Moray Eel, Gymnothorax funebris, Grand Cayman

I taking a shot of an Eagle Ray that was “flying around the site” when I turned around and this Green Moray just about jumped into my lap.  It just shows that it is a good idea to continually look around or have your dive buddy let you know when something interesting happens to swim nearby.  Just don’t use pulling your dive buddy’s hair as the signal, but that is a story for another time….

Roundabout, Grand Cayman (Steven W Smeltzer)

Slimy Sea Plume, Pseudopterogorgia americana, Grand Cayman

Typically when diving Roundabout you can do a “top of the wall” dive as a buddy team.  Remember your are responsible for monitoring your air and your computer to make sure you don’t get into “deco” time.  You can also follow the dive master around to see what they find.  Either way, I like to cruise the top of the wall of Roundabout Grand Cayman and look out into the “blue” to see if anything interesting is around.  I usually swim slowly over the top of the reef and enjoy the variety of soft corals that are on this site.  I also also look for smaller marine species that might make a good shot while keeping an eye watching into the blue.

Roundabout, Grand Cayman (Steven W Smeltzer)

Sharpnose Puffer, Canthigaster rostrata, Grand Cayman

 

The pool is open…..