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Dive Review of Playa Scuba Dive Center/Paraiso Azul's in
Cozumel and the Mexican Yucatan/Playa del Carmen

Playa Scuba Dive Center/Paraiso Azul's : "Great value, good service at Playa Scuba Dive Center", Jun, 2015,

by Mae L. Ding, CA, US (Sr. Reviewer Sr. Reviewer 7 reports with 8 Helpful votes). Report 8433.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 3 stars Food N/A
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments We chose this dive center because of the good ratings on Trip Adviser and very reasonable cost. Small dive center located on Avenida 15 a few blocks from 5th Avenue between Calle 2 and Calle 3. We did 3 days of cenote diving and 1 day of reef diving. Prior to this trip we had done Ceynote diving in the Tulum area with other dive centers. There are many Ceynotes to choose from. By far the most impressive Cenote was Grand Cenote which is not to be missed. Be ready to pay 150 to 200 pesos in cash for entry to each cenote. We had 4 different dive masters all of whom were very professional, personable, and helpful. One of them spoke only limited English.
2 Cenote dives run about $85 plus entry fees to each cenote. The cost includes water, sandwich, cookies or fruit, and round trip transportation from the shop to the ceynote. If you are diving cenotes, ask for Olivier. He is an an outstanding divemaster from France who speaks perfect English and does a great job of prepping you for dives, giving you background on each cenote, and keeping everyone safe. I have trouble with my back because I broke it 2 years ago. Olivier offered to carry my tanks from the parking lot to the edge of each ceynote that we visited and then helped me to get the tank on in the water.
Ocean dives run about $65 for 2 dives from a small panga boat without any sun cover. Boat captain, helper, and dive master were very helpful with getting divers in and out of the water and setting up tanks. Niki a divemaster from Australia gave excellent briefings for reef dives and was very good at pointing out many turtles, lobster, giant barracudas, puffer fish, moray eels, golden tail eel, drum fish, french angels, and other special fish. Saw several large schools of goat fish and snappers. In early June we had 100 plus foot visibility in 81 degree water and 83 degree air temp with sunny days. Dive sites were about a 30 minute boat ride from beach where we waded out to the boat from shore (which was a 7 minute walk from the shop). Boat had tanks and weights on board. Divers must meet at the shop at 8 am each day for dives whether reef or cenote.
The shop is very good about accommodating special requests for dive locations. They were also very kind in agreeing to refund one day of diving for my husband who was unable to make his last day of diving due to an ear problem. The shop has rinse tanks, shower, and drying areas for wet suits. They will store your gear overnight so you donít have to drag it back and forth each day. Their rental equipment appears fairly new and rents for $15/day. I would not hesitate to recommend this well run and accommodating dive center.
If you want to dive with Playa Scuba, we recommend staying at Paraiso Azulís Hotel which is only 2 short blocks away for above average quality budget accommodations. There are several other hotels within 1-2 blocks. There is a place to exchange dollars on the same block as well as a coffee/expresso shop with pastries a few doors down.
Websites Playa Scuba Dive Center   Paraiso Azul's

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving Fiji, Cozumel, Palau, Little Cayment, La Paz
Closest Airport Cancun Getting There Nonstop LAX to Cancun on Virgin America, then a 1 hour drive to Playa del Carmen

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 79-82°F / 26-28°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 60-100 Ft/ 18-30 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions Follow guide. Observe max depth and predetermined dive time. First to come up, everyone comes up a same time.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 3 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 2 stars Large Fish 2 stars
Large Pelagics N/A

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 2 stars
UW Photo Comments Used GoPro in Cavern Diving. Worked real well with flashlights for lighting. No special camera facilities since you go there by truck. Ocean dives were in small Panga boats so no facilities for camera though you could probably request a bucket of fresh water.
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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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