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Puerto Rico Diving

Discussion in 'Greater Caribbean and Bermuda' started by myshadeofred, Sep 18, 2019.

  1. nippurmagnum

    nippurmagnum Barracuda

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Washington DC metro
    200
    169
    43
    I spent a month in Vieques after Hurricane Maria helping with the recovery effort, and managed to do three shore dives from the Mosquito pier. It was good diving, lots of turtles, southern sting rays, nurse sharks, right under the pier. The pier itself is at the end of a mile-long manmade wave barrier that ensures calm conditions at the pier itself, even on a windy day. There is a new ferry service running out of the pier and I don’t know how that might have affected dive conditions. But assuming you have your own gear, it can be great diving for the cost of a tank rental. Blackbeard sports rents tanks, call them and ask about the pier and tank rentals if you’re interested.

    One thing about diving in Vieques — it would be a terrible place to get bent. No chamber, and for that matter, the hospital was condemned after the hurricane. So if you are going to dive there, stay shallow. The pier is great because it’s 40 feet max.

    Vieques is a charming island with very little commercial development, all the restaurants and hotels are mom-and-pop — old style Caribbean.
     
  2. myshadeofred

    myshadeofred Nassau Grouper

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Virginia
    120
    77
    28
    You won't have to worry about the depth going with local tourist shops mentioned above. Now if you OPT to go to Culebra, there you may have some deeper dives. If you are not wanting to fly...Fajardo is supposed fun easy dives. And I would recommend renting gear as you don't get much of a discount if you have your own and that way you don't have to rinse and find a place to dry in hotel...I did that...don't recommend it.
     
  3. MiloR

    MiloR Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Ohio
    12
    7
    3
    I did 2 dives Sat (45' and 47') and 2 on Sunday (58' and 70'ish) all at the Enrique Reef. Today I did 2 dives, 1 at "the Black Wall" -- 90' and the other at "Old Boy" - 67''. All sites are directly South of La Parguera. Went with Paradise Scuba. Had a great time. Great staff and boats. Fwiw, I also did an evening snorkel at the Bio-luminescent Bay. That was just as interesting as anything else and HIGHLY recommended as there are only 5 places in the World for Bio-luminescent, 3 in Puerto Rico.

    Tomorrow & Wed I will be doing some Shore diving in Rincon, most likely Crash Boat Beach but it will depend on the riptide report in the AM.

    There are really like 3 different/distinct "cultures" in PR. East/Northeast, South/Southwest, and Northwest. I enjoy any area on the West half of the Island best, personally.
     
    ginovega likes this.
  4. Purpledancingmermaid

    Purpledancingmermaid Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: New York
    9
    1
    3
    Hi all. I'm going to Puerto Rico over thanksgiving week. I'm flying in to San Juan, but I haven't booked my flight back yet. I would like to go to more than San Juan.

    From this thread, am I understanding right that Rincon area, specifically Desecheo and La Parguera might be the best plan if I don't want to take another flight to Culebra/Viesques? It's a short trip just about 6 days, so I'm wondering whether another flight would be worth the time.

    For a 6 day trip, what do you all suggest? If you could also give some recommendations of dive centers at the suggested areas, that would be great!!
     
  5. ibj40

    ibj40 Divemaster

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Texas
    2,277
    1,412
    113
    One one of our trips we stayed in Rincon and dived both Desecheo and La Parguera (we drove down to La Parguera as a long day trip); on another we stayed in Playa Santa and dove the La Parguera wall from there. In Rincon, we dove with Taino Divers, in La Parguera we dove with West Divers, and in Playa Santa we dove with Island Divers.

    Each one of these destinations is easily accessible from the San Juan Airport with a rent car.

    We did fly over to Culebra on one of our other trips, however if you have concerns, I would not recommend it (although we enjoyed the diving very much).

    On all three of our trips, we have also made sure to spend several days in Old San Juan, as well, in order to take in all the history.
     
  6. Purpledancingmermaid

    Purpledancingmermaid Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: New York
    9
    1
    3
    Thank youu! This is very helpful. Just to confirm, Desecheo doesn't need any permits to dive at, does it? Did you have any preference between diving at Desecheo + La Parguera and at Culebra?

    Have any of you dived at Mona Island? If so, how easy/hard is it to get a permit for it, and is it worth it?
     
  7. ibj40

    ibj40 Divemaster

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Texas
    2,277
    1,412
    113
    I am Divemaster, my wife is PADI Advanced, so not sure what "permits" you are asking about. I want to say that some of the divers on our Desecheo trip were Open Water only.

    Haven't been to Mona, my understanding is that it is a liveaboard destination.

    If you ask my diving preference, on that criteria only, I'd dive the Playa Santo sector of the wall. The colonies of Black Corrals is simply amazing, and the reefs are very alive and vibrant.

    The downside of that destination is that there's not a lot else to do shore side when you are not diving.
     
  8. Purpledancingmermaid

    Purpledancingmermaid Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: New York
    9
    1
    3

    Was there more to do in Culebra besides diving? What was the dive center you dived with there? Thanks again!
     
  9. ibj40

    ibj40 Divemaster

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Texas
    2,277
    1,412
    113
    We dove with Culebra Divers. Nice folks.

    We rented a jeep and stayed at a little place out on Flamenco (some mistakenly say Flamingo) Beach, which is beautiful.

    We drove around the island a little, but wished we had ventured out more. The town is fun to wander around in, lots of good places to eat (and drink).
     
  10. Purpledancingmermaid

    Purpledancingmermaid Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: New York
    9
    1
    3
    Sorry for all these questions y'all. I really don't know how to plan vacations well. Does the diving get affected much if you stay in Culebra or Vieques? Can you dive around both island dive sites from one of them? Could someone also recommend a dive center at Vieques, and an alternative for Culebra Divers (they aren't diving during the days I'm there)?

    Thank you all for your patience!
     
    chillyinCanada likes this.

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