The island of Dominica is not known for having flashy 5-star resorts, international airports or popular fast-food chains, like its other neighboring islands. Instead, this unique island possesses a plethora of outdoor activities, least of which is some of the Caribbean’s most exhilarating scuba diving escapades. Just outside the capital Roseau, off Michelin Main Rd., is a shallow reef, known as the Solomon Reef, which is worthy of your discovery.
Though the reef here has had its share of storm damage and sits at the foot of an active quarry… this dive site is appealingly rich with forests of Gorgonians, hard and soft coral structures, and an impressive array of Dominica’s colorful sponges in various shapes… huge baskets, barrels and yellow tubes. At this site, there is an abundance of fish, particularly shoals of Snapper, Morays, Longspine Squirrelfish, Goatfish and huge Scorpion and Lizardfish.
Fields of shy Garden eels play peek-a-boo from beneath the sand and giant Red Basket Sponges sprout many antennae, being housing estates to banded and spotted Cleaner shrimp, waving their candy-striped claws; as well as Pederson’s shrimp, with their long electric-blue bodies. Filefish buzz excitedly around the sponge outcrops, with sightings of many Moray eels, and sometimes, sightings of Hawksbill turtles nestled contentedly in crevices. It would be tragic if Solomon Reef should be lost, due to pollution from the active quarry nearby.
Billy Lawrence, owner of ALDive & W.A.T.E.R.Sports Inc. is optimistic about the future of Solomon Cove, and has dedicated his time to helping preserve this incredible reef – discussing with locals the vital importance that reefs play to the island and its community.