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Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

Chicago, Illinois
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45 posts
17 reviews
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Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

Any tips or experience to share regarding the Dive companies in Bocas?

Newport Beach...
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614 posts
109 reviews
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1. Re: Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

Hi there - I was there in May 2010 and dove with Bocas Water Sports. I had seen Jon post on the scubaboard.com contacted him. He was very accomidating, good new quality equipment and had a good experience with the shop and DM.

I am very experienced diver and really only dove 1 day. I have been spoiled by Thailand, Bonaire and wanted to surf more than dive.

Here is their website and would recommend, safe, and reasonable prices for their dives.

http://www.bocaswatersports.com/

Atlanta
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for Jaco, Bocas Town
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2. Re: Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

Bocas Water Sports is the only one I have used in Bocas as well. They were fine. Equipment was fine, not the best, but by no means the worst I have had to deal with. I prefer diving over snorkling in general, but when I am in Bocas I prefer snorkling so I don't have much experience diving Bocas. Wish I could help more.

Chicago, Illinois
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45 posts
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3. Re: Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

mrolfes: Have dived in the Corn Islands? It seems that diving is better there....just trying to plan my dives and snorkeling: dive more in Corn or Bocas.

Atlanta
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for Jaco, Bocas Town
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4. Re: Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

If you only want to do 1 then I would dive in Corn Islands. The diving is just ok in Bocas. I really am not a snorkler (is that even a word), but Bocas has some amazing things to see, and much of it you cant get to diving, only snorkling.

Atlanta, Georgia...
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for Colon, Isla Grande, Portobelo
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5. Re: Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

Go to Scubaboard and search for "Back to Bocas." scubaboard.com/forums/…323572-back-bocas.html It's a review of Bocas overall and Bocas Water Sports and diving in particular, written after a 4 day dive trip in January.

I first dove Bocas in 2000. At that time, the only thing trustworthy at BWS was their T-shirt. Since then, Jon has totally turned the operation around. You won't find a more honest, professional, helpful dive operator in all of Panama than Jon and BWS.

As for the diving ... Panama isn't Grand Cayman or Roatan. But, Bocas has a great collection of critters to see. Read the review.

Edited: 17 December 2010, 22:27
Tucson, Arizona
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for Quito, Ecuador
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6. Re: Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

GB is correct in several regards. Jon and Stacy have worked hard since buying BWS to bring the standards up. I originally chose BWS because of their desire to train and hire locals as DMs rather than rely strictly on ex-pats. I have found them to be very accommodating and cognizant of grouping divers by experience levels. I have my own gear so can´t comment on theirs, except when my computer conked out Jon lent me his.

The diving takes some getting used to. The viz isn´t great and sometimes you´re diving on silt-covered reefs. But I always manage to find or observe something new. There are more toadfish there than anywhere I´ve ever dived, and I see at least a couple of seahorses, too. The unsilty reefs have lots of healthy corals.

BWS is very busy during holidays and you should reserve your spot in advance. I´m preparing for my third trip there starting Thursday, and I´ll be diving nearly every day. One of these days, I´ll have to off-gas one day and see the island!

Bocas del Toro
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7. Re: Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

I can recommend both BWS and La Buga surf and dive.

Although I think that the diving is not that great in Bocas , especially in the rainy season, and frankly I think you can see as much snorkeling. What is absolutely worth doing though is to get certified, as it is cheap and the water is warm - year round!

If I were to plan a diving trip to Bocas, it would be in september and october, dry season, better visibility and I also heard good things about San Blas but have not been there personally.

8. Re: Choosing a Dive/Scuba Company

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