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Dive Review of East Puerto Rico Diving in
Puerto Rico

April, 2009, an Instant Reader Report by Mark Zahorik, Il, USA
Sr. Reviewer   (9 reports)
Report Number 4854
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
251-500 dives
Where else diving
Cozumel, Turks & Caicos, Bonaire, Caymans, Lake Michigan (wrecks)
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

Water Temp
80   to 82    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
80   to 100    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
First (deeper) dive of the day-- follow the group. 2nd (shallower) dive own
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  3 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  3 stars
Large Fish
Large Pelagics
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
3 stars  
Boat Facilities
4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
3 stars  
Shore Facilities  
3 stars  
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Service and Attitude
Environmental Sensitivity  
5 stars
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
4 stars    
3 stars   
3 stars    
I live in Chicago and travel regularly (4x year) to visit my wife's family
in Puerto Rico.  I usually try to squeeze in a few dives when I visit and
consequently have logged ~ 200 dives all over the island.  In my judgement,
the best diving on the island is on the west (Desecheo island) and the
south (wall diving in Guanica) ends of the island.  The diving in these two
zones stacks up pretty well with most other dive destinations in the
Caribbean. The challenge that I have--and many others that are staying in
or around San Juan--is that the drive to the west or south is prohibitvely
long (2+ hour drives one way).  Consequently, most divers are directed to
the north east part of the island (Fajardo) where the diving--even on a
very good day--is not even mediocre.  Over the years I've heard many divers
give lackluster reviews of their dives on the island and in most cases
they've only dove the crummy sites in Fajardo.  For those staying in San
Juan, a much better and equi-distant (45 minute drive) alternative to
Fajardo is toward the south east part of the island in a resort called
"Palmas Del Mar".  Inside the resort is a large harbor and a new
dive operation called "East Puerto Rico Diving".  This shop was
launched by a retired stockbroker turned avid scuba instructor, Joe LeRoy. 
There is a large reef formation just outside the harbor called the
"Basslet Reef" that stretches for several miles.  The reef is
quite impressive and the visibility on the deeper (first) dives is
consistently close to 100'.  The area seems a bit overfished, so larger
pelagics are not seen too frequently, but I've seen turtles & rays on
many/most of my dives.  A bonus with this location is that they often elect
to make the 12 mile trip over to Vieques.  There are several shallow reefs
off of Vieques that they often visit when the group has newer divers--these
reefs seem very healthy and unspoiled by fisherman.  The sites near Palmas
are also solid.  The dive site "Moray's ledge" was particularly
notable. In addition to getting an up close view of a 6 foot green moray
eel, we also had a sea turtle follow us around for five minutes while we
viewed several lobster, a spotted eagle ray w/Remora attached, an octopus
along with schools of grunts, spadefish, angelfish....a very memorable dive
with almost 100 feet of visibility.  Bottom Line: I still view the west
& south regions of the island as having the best diving, but "East
Puerto Rico Diving" is a very good alternative for anyone staying in
and around San Juan.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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