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“Bio bay tour”

Abe's Snorkeling and BioBay Tours
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Travel with the best guides in the Caribbean as you snorkel beautiful coral reefs, paddle through enchanted mangrove forests, and are amazed by Vieques' Bioluminescent Bay. Offering eight different eco tours, Abe's Snorkeling and BioBay Tours, Inc. Is the most recommended, diversified and family-friendly kayak company on the island. Abe's Snorkeling and BioBay Tours is endorsed by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company, licensed by the DRNA, and insured. One of the longest standing touring companies in Vieques, Abe's Snorkeling and BioBay Tours is committed to the preservation of wildlife and eco systems on the island. The friendly local guides are environmentally aware and excited to share their knowledge with you. They will be next to you at all times to make sure that you have a lot of fun while being safe and comfortable. Looking forward to meeting you soon in the beautiful paradise of Vieques!
Useful Information: Activities for older children
West Lafayette, IN
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
“Bio bay tour”
Reviewed 28 April 2014

We called Abe's at the last minute and were able to go kayaking to the bio bay with them. They were the only company that would allow our 5-year old son on the kayak with us. We had read and heard that they tended to have large groups. Ours was 37, with 17 kayaks, so it was large. There were times that our kayaks bumped. But, it was not inconvenient. The guides (Carlito - 2 of them, Priscilla) were very professional, knowledgable, organized and enthusiastic. The bay was not at 100% and we had been told that from the beginning. I have never seen it before, so I can't tell what percentage was back and what was missing, but it was magical. Carlito answered a lot of questions, shared information while on the trip and Priscilla did so when we asked her questions as she was driving. The drive was through bumpy terrain, but she did great getting us there safely and we had no problems. Being out in the dark, on kayaks, with a million stars was a wonderful experience.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
Thank mnckvl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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English first
Dayton, Ohio
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“DO NOT GO WITH ABE'S !!!”
Reviewed 21 April 2014

Let's break it down: if you have fins and a snorkel (or can rent on beach for the day, some guest houses have for free), have any idea how to snorkel, and have any idea how to use a kayak (again the rentals on the beach-with life jacket were better than we used with Abe's company)...you can do 1/2 of the "Abe's tour options" (blue beach snorkeling, Cayo Afuera kayak-snorkeling was easy on a rough sea day with 3 kids 7,8 and 12 years), mosquito pier snorkeling, easy for my 8 year old). You do not need to pay extra for these type of excursions !

If you go to the Biobay...in any way...GO WITH THE CLEAR BOTTOM BOATS !!! (this is not an option with Abe's Biobay tours). CLEAR BOTTOM BOATS.... very cool, nothing like you will every experience. That company was much more organized as well as I recall.

The reception staff is rude and not accommodating. I needed to cancel a trip which I gave 72 hour notice (left a voicemail about our family emergency), then called back the next morning and was told they did not get my voicemail and I was not eligible for a cancellation. Either take the trip despite an ill child or lose over $600. I then called my credit card company and she had ALREADY PROCESSED FEE, DESPITE US NOT TAKING TRIP YET(about 2 min before I called credit card company)...trip was in 2 days from this interaction. I was told "Lady I have a business to run." Empathy is not their forte.

Rent a car, tour the Biobay in clear bottom boats, visit beaches with renal car (Morizas ??), find locals to tour you around mangroves and teach you about local biology and ecosystem.

Visited November 2013
Helpful?
8 Thank M J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rochester, New York
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“DO NOT USE ABE'S!!”
Reviewed 19 April 2014

Vieques Island has been on my bucket list for years. I spent a lot of time researching tour companies and chose Abe's because most of his reviews were good and my first choice was closed for a few months. What a mistake! we are a family of four with two young adult sons. We booked two tours with Abe's. Yesterday we were on a snorkeling tour and today, as I write this, we should be out on the Bio Bay with them.
The snorkeling tour was a total waste of money. It is billed as a 2hr tour. First, the guide was late to the meeting point, which turned out to be just a five minute walk from the launch site, but he didn't have any equipment with him so we had to drive to their facilities to pick up the kayaks and snorkeling gear. As soon as we arrived at the launch site he received a call that he needed to return to pick up someone else and get equipment for them too. We were left standing at the beach 20 minutes. It was a very windy day. The owner of the B&B (Esperanza Inn ...great place...review coming soon) thought that the tour might get cancelled. I called Abe's one hour in advance and was told that if conditions were not good we wouldn't go out. Finally the others arrived and we kayaked out to the key where we were to snorkel. I was disappointed that there was almost nothing to see...a dozen fish, a few conch shells and very little coral. Everything was a murky brown color. Our guide then explained that it was too windy to go to the other side of the key where we should be snorkeling! So for $45 pp we got to stand around for over an hour, kayak a few minutes, snorkel less than 30 min and go back and stand around again.
I complained to Abe's this morning and they offered a $5 pp discount for tonights Bio Bay tour. We arrived at the meeting point a few minutes early. There was some sort of Easter festival going on in the street making it very busy (you would think that Abe's would know this) Several other people were waiting also. 20 minutes late a "guide" arrives and hustles us to a van that did not have enough seats for the number of people booked. My husband and two sons are all over 6'2" and there were two seats for the four of us! The guide said that he would "drop them off" and come back to get us. We knew that it would be a 20-30 min round trip and told him to forget about it! The moon was about to rise and we would have thrown more money away. This company is VERY disorganized and will take any one's money at any time (bay glowing or not) In addition only one couple in the group looked prepared to actually kayak, the others were dressed inappropriately for the type of activity and we most likely would have had to wait around as they struggled. Already on yesterday's tour the late couple (mother and teen-age son) did not follow the guides directives, tipped over, and we had to wait another 20 min for them to get "rescued" A very disappointing end to a very lovely island.

Visited April 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank carol s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rochester, Minnesota
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Abe's left me feeling deceived. Biggest waste of money.”
Reviewed 4 April 2014

We were told my locals to make sure the biobay was at least 50% so when we called to make reservations we asked and the person taking our reservation told us it was at 85%. Our group was thrilled going into the tour to see what everyone was talking about. When we finally reached Mosquito Bay the guide started telling us the history and told us to put our hands in the water. I didn't know what I was looking for b/c it barely lit up. I asked the guide what percent it was at and he told me 30%. After hearing that I was done. I was pissed that we asked when making reservations that it was well over 50% and trusted them in making the reservation. Biggest waste of money and shame on Abe's for deceiving a customer.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
5 Thank AFisher427
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sofia, Bulgaria
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Very disorginized, rude guide”
Reviewed 4 April 2014

It's hard to believe that Abe's has been doing this tour for years, as it seemed like this was the first time that anyone in the company had ever done the tour. The bay itself is pretty neat (I don't think it was glowing at more than about 50% when I went), and getting to kayak at night, as the moon rises, is a great experience. Definitely check out the bio bay when you are Vieques. Just don't go with Abe's. Or if you do, don't expect a smooth experience, and try to roll with the punches.

This is a long review, as my experience with the company was disappointing. To summarize, the initial pick up process was disorganized, very little information about how the tour was going to proceed was given, and the guide, Jeff, yelled a lot. Bottom line, I would not use this company again.

There were 42 people on our tour, which seemed to be more than the head guide was expecting. About 20 of these people were together in one large group, which included a 2-3 year old child. I also don't think the guides knew about the child in advance of the tour--frankly they should not have allowed the kid on the tour, especially since his parents could not swim. Our main guide, Jeff, did seem a bit concerned, but he didn't seem to have the authority to prevent the child from going. There were 3 or 4 other guides as well, but they had very little interaction with the group beyond handing out gear and helping us in and out of the boats.

With 42 people in the group, paying and signing waivers took about 20 minutes, which wasn't too bad. However, we then spent about another 40 minutes in the parking lot waiting for another vehicle. Somehow, the tour company had only provided two 13 passenger vans for the trip to the lagoon, even though there were 42 people, plus 4-5 guides, on the trip. The main guide, Jeff, was pretty angry about this, but it was hard to tell who his anger was directed towards. Was he mad because the company had stiffed him a van, or was he mad because his 42 clients weren't willing to pack into vans that had seats for 26 customers? Maybe he was mad at everyone. The extra 40 minutes we spent hanging around in the parking lot could have been used to tell us about the logistics of our trip, explaining the basics of kayaking, or talking about what was expected of us on the tour. None of this was done. Instead we were left to mill around the parking lot, not entirely sure what was going on.

When we did get down to the water, there was also basically no explanation of what we would be doing or what was expected of us. We were given paddles and life jackets, and given numbers to count off so that the guide could make sure the group was staying together. However, the guide had friends on the tour, who were boat numbers 1 and 2, and they weren't paying much attention to the guide at all. They would have to repeatedly be prompted to say their numbers, making the whole counting idea seem unimportant. Unfortunately, when we didn't count off to the guides satisfaction, he yelled at us.

Luckily, my friend and I already knew how to kayak, as no instruction was given, nor did anyone ask if we had ever been kayaking before. The bay was very calm, so even novice boaters did okay, but I've read that sometimes the water can be a bit rough. I'm glad this was not my first kayaking experience, as I think that even a little bit of instruction goes a long way towards feeling safe and competent paddling a boat.

Once we were in our boats, we were supposed to follow the guide out to the middle of the bay, so that he could talk about the ecosystem a bit. However, this instruction was not clearly given, and it took a long time to get everyone rounded up. At one point, as we were waiting for everyone to cluster together in the boats, the main guide was talking to his friends in Spanish about things that did not relate to the tour. One of the men in the group of 20 asked him to speak in English, as it was an English tour--he thought he was missing out on information. Rather than say that he was just chatting with a friend, and that all relevant information would be in English, the guide, Jeff, got very defensive. He chastised the man for speaking "Hindu" within their group, and said the group should only speak in English as well. The tone the guide used was very challenging, and conveyed a lot of disrespect towards his clients. The ecological explanation was short; it contained a bit more information than most of the websites on the bay, but I didn't learn anything new.

After the ecology lesson we were let loose to kayak around on our own agendas, which was nice. A clear idea of how much time we had, or where we were expected to go towards the end of the tour was not given. When we did not all come back to home base, not knowing that we should do so, the guide yelled at us. Poor directions were also given when it came time to head back to shore. Again, this seemed to be our fault, and the guide yelled at us.

Thankfully, the process of loading up the vans and pickup (the extra vehicle) at the end was pretty quick, and we were back to the parking lot in a reasonable amount of time. Sadly, it seemed like a lot of people just wanted the tour to end.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
5 Thank Hanna S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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