Hi, I'm planning on organising a dive trip for a group in a month or two. We are experienced divers and have our own gears.
Could you provide me with details about the dives, we would possibly dive twice daily if possible and some might like to go night diving.
I'd like to bring my guys for lionfish hunting if possible.
What are the transportation needs and are there restaurants nearby, where would you recommend us to stay ?
P.S. My last review of a diving center (media Luna) was read by almost 8,000 readers on Tripadvisor, if you agree, I'd like to make a publi- reportage about your place.
Just to make sure that you got our message.
Let us know if you have any questions.
Thanks for contacting us! There are quite a few exciting dive packages we can offer you and several hotels nearby that you can stay at. Are you looking for an all-inclusive hotel or just a room with no food or drinks included? We offer free transportation from all the local hotels and if you bring your own gear you can leave it with us and we will wash it and have it on the boat each day.How many people are in your group? We have nice custom dive boats for groups and depending on the size of the group can offer you your own boat! Does everyone have their own gear? How many days of diving would you like to do? Lion fish hunting is certainly available so no problem there.. I look forward to hearing from you!
Firstly, I would like to mention that my wife is a travel agent. She and I went to the La Romana area in October, 2016. Another member of our dive club, in Ajax, Ontario, went to the DR in December and used ScubaFun based on my recommendation. This diver had an excellent dive and time while there.
I mention the fact that she is a travel agent because she put our trip together for last October. She is currently putting together a trip to the DR, La Romana region again, for divers from our scuba club, and for non-divers, and as of now we have eight confirmed people going, and we are going to use ScubaFun again as our dive shop. She is currently talking with John on group pricing for dive packages and is looking at the various resorts to stay at, hopefully as a group to receive the best all-inclusive rate, to get the best possible pricing for the all-inclusive; all-inclusive entails: flight, transfers, accommodation at a four star all-inclusive resort, and taxes.
I am not too aware of any local restaurants. I've seen some advertisements on the Trip Advisor promos for local restaurants. As my wife books the all-inclusive, the only time we travel outside of the resort, to go into a local town, is when there is a group of us and it is more of an adventure.
When we went diving, we encountered several lion fish. The dive masters had spears that some of the other divers used to kill the lion fish. I think that lion fish hunting would definitely be acceptable and perhaps the dive masters may have a more specific dive site that would accommodate the hunt. You would have to enquire from John as to the specifics of this.
The boats that ScubFun has are large and comfortable. Two dives per day is the usual. The last listing I looked at several weeks ago was $80.00USD for two tank dives. This included the boat, helpers working their butts off to assist whenever and wherever, taking equipment on and off the boat and rinsing at the end of the dive, and on-board refreshments of fruit, cakes and water. Any arrangements should be made in advance.
We were there in October when the hurricane blew through. The clarity was not 100% and marine life was not as extensive as other dive sites I've been to. Now, I believe, that should be changed and clarity and marine life should be better.
I strongly recommend the St. George wreck dive. I was at 133 feet and was not at the bottom of the sea. It looked like there was another 10 feet or more to the bottom and to where the wreck was sitting on the sea bed. We did an extremely adventurous penetration dive! That, alone, was worth the trip.
The dive sites I would recommend that I did:
The sites I want to do this upcoming trip would be:
These ones are further away and obviously cost more per dive.
I did the night dive on the St. George. Minimum number of divers to do a night dive is two. You must bring a strong (thousands of lumens) light. Be prepared for the current that might exist during the night dive that was not present during the day dive. I'm not too sure if there is an alternative night dive spot. I'm going to find out next trip.
Transportation was provided by the dive shop as we were local and was free. Since I left my gear at the dive shop, I only need to bring my basics with me. The taxi vans are large and comfortable. Pick up time is fairly regulated and it is best to be at the front of your accommodation at least five minutes before pick up. Sometimes the driver may need to go to two or three hotels to collect all of the divers
The equipment available at ScubaFun is fairly new and reliable. The tanks have air or nitrox; , depending upon your dive plan and preference. I only used their tanks and weight belt as I took my own regs and BCD, fins and mask. If anyone is prone to sea sickness, make sure one takes gravol as the waves can be rough. The dive masters are excellent. They try to ensure you see marine life that may go unnoticed by other divers. The dive masters cover the dive plan well at the briefing and expect all divers to be considerate of this dive plan for safety.
I have tried to cover:
types of dives
I cannot give you details about accommodation as I don't live there. A fellow I met has moved out of the DR and he would have been a good source of information. To that end, If you wish any more info, then you can send another question through Trip Advisor and I'll see if I can answer it and thanks for your question.
Sorry I didn't see this sooner to respond.
We stayed in one of the hotels in the area, all inclusive, and didn't need to dine out... If there are holiday lets, there must be bars and restaurants in the area.
Good source of such information could be "ProExcursions" -a very knowledgeable local Canadian company.
There are usually 2 dives a day.
There were lots of lionfish 2 years ago, Scuba Fun had some spear guns and encouraged us to spear-fish this predator.
The dive centre does the pick-ups and drop-downs, never forgot about us. Taxis are available and not expensive too. Or a "rogue transport service" - once we travelled for a small fee by a not-in-service coach bus...
I am not sure about night dives, I think you would need to contact Scuba Fun or other diving centre. They can be very busy at times, but always accommodating.
Please be aware that the area was overfished for years, and there is not a lot of fish in DR waters, not like in Egypt or Yucatan.
Some dives are quite shallow, but a good eye can spot a nudibranch or a seahorse. Wrecks are always amazing and attract more marine life.
For dive sites info please consult local dive centres websites.
Have a great time in Dominican Republic.
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