For the best snorkeling opportunities, it is really advised to take a charter out of Fajardo. Puerto Rico is unique from most Caribbean islands because you will not find impressive snorkeling opportunities from it's mainland shores. Because of the large central mountain ranges and multiple rivers which flow into the sea, much sediment is deposited by these rivers. Add upland construction, pollution from a densly populated island, and poor erosion control and basically the corals and reefs have been suffocated. The mountains of the west coast are lower and therefore this area does not receive the quantities of rain as you will find on the east coast with El Yunque so there are still several shore snorkeling opportunities in the western and southwestern region however during the winter months the surf can be rough with poorer visability.
On the east coast there are other unique and great opportunities. There are many small islands off the east coast that make up the chain know as La Cordillera Islands. There are wonderful diving and snorkeling opportunities all around these islands including Vieques and Culebra. Exploring these islands by charter is a great way to spend the day in the sun and on the water while opening a whole new world of underwater adventure. Even though there are many charter companies, below are our top picks rated by fun, professionalism, and personal experience.
****Please click on the ORANGE colored text and you will be directed to each operator's direct website where you can get much more detailed information
Erin Go Bragh III : If looking for an intimate sailing experience with a maximum of only six passengers then hands down Erin Go Bragh may be a perfect choice. With Capt. Fleming or Capt. Keith at the helm and Ingrid as the owner and first mate, you will be lulled by the whisper of the wind through the sails as this lovely classic 50 ft ketch slices effortlessly through the warm blue Caribbean waters. Explore underwater reefs away from the catamaran crowds, swim in the clearest waters, or just relax on board. You will enjoy a delicious BBQ lunch with plenty of home made side dishes and a colorful healthy salad. Enjoy fresh local fruits, wonderful snacks such as Ingrid's home made mango salsa and unlimited drinks both alcoholic and non alcoholic.
Cost is $95 per person plus 7% local tax. This includes, snorkel gear with instruction if needed, snacks, lunch, and beverages.
This is a full day sail and you will meet at Puerto Del Rey Marina in Fajardo at 9:30AM and return by 4:30PM
Exclusive charters can also be booked. Please contact Erin Go Bragh for rates and more information.
Spread Eagle II is a fabulous 51 foot catamaran. You will visit small tropical islands where you can swim in the crystal waters and relax on white sand beaches. You will then be treated to a magnificent buffet lunch featuring local breads, deli meats and salads. There are free snacks and drinks throughout your journey including punch and pina coladas. They also provide all snorkel equipment with instruction by their knowledgeable staff (and you even get to keep the snorkel!). Excursions depart from Villa Marina in Fajardo and last approximately 5-6 hours. Cost is $70 +tax adults and $50+tax children 12 or under.
East Island Excursions offers several charter options.
Full Day Sailing Catamaran- The day begins at Puerta Del Rey Marina where you will sign in and board a lovely 62 foot catamaran. The East Wind offers an expansive deck area for lounging, cushioned seating and tables, two “stairways to the sea” for easy access, 8 feet of glass bottom windows their underwater viewing area and a water slide with running water! They provide quality snorkeling gear and underwater cameras are available onboard for sale. There are two restrooms on board, (men’s and women’s), a fresh water shower and plenty of cabin space for guests to sit in the shade or tuck away belongings. Onboard, they serve an unlimited Lunch Buffet of fresh fruits, fresh-baked breads, sliced deli meats, cheeses, tuna salad, gourmet pasta salad, coleslaw and chips other salads. Sodas, water, juices, Piña Coladas, and Tropical Rum Punch are included along with chips and cookies. Beer and mixed drinks are also available for purchase. This trip lasts about 5 1/2 hrs and price is $69+tax per adult or $49 +tax for children 10 and under.
Culebra Get-Away aboard a power Catamaran-The day begins out of Puerta Del Rey Marina where you will board the Island Flyer power catamaran. This is a fast boat and you arrive to Culebra in under one hour . The first stop is the Luis Pena Nature Reserve where you will be treated to some of the best snorkeling in Puerto Rico. There is a large reef which runs along the preserve, and the waters are crystal clear and calm as a lake. You will see many fish, among which is Lola the resident barracuda, brain coral, elk horn coral, and perhaps even a turtle and a few dolphins. You will spend about an hour and a half at this location. The water is about 20 feet deep where the boat will anchor and you swim several yards ahead to reach the reefs. From here they will pull anchor and start the short trip to famous Flamenco beach where a buffet lunch is served. They will either anchor a bit off shore or if conditions permit they will also anchor close to the beach in about 5-6 feet of water. You will stay in this area until approximately 3:15pm. At Flamenco you can swim, snorkel, beach comb or just relax in the sun. This is truly the easiest and most hassle free way to see the best of Culebra as a day trip. Cost of trip is $89 +tax per person adults and $69 + tax per person for children ten and under. You depart from Puerto Del Rey Marina at 9:30 am and return at 4pm. Lunch, beverages, pina coladas, rum punch, and snacks, along with snorkeling gear are all included with this price.
Special tips :
- During winter months there may be days with high winds or rough seas and this trip will be cancelled. They will offer the option of sailing to the nearer islands of Icacos, Palomino and such.
- During winter months there may be some days where the water may be a bit rough. This is a very fast boat so the ride may be bouncy and rough. If you have back problems or are pregnant it may not be recommended
- This trip will not put you ashore or in town, it is primarily a snorkel and beach trip however it is the easiest and most convenient way to get a taste and see the highlights of Culebra.
Vieques Biobay-East Island is the only way to see the biobay on Vieques without having to spend the night. You will board the power catamaran in late afternoon and make the voyage over to Vieques. You will then be shuttled to a local restaurant for dinner and will then be taken to the biobay. A local company will then provide the biobay tour via electric motor boat. You will return to Fajardo at about 10:30 pm. Cost is $119 +tax per person.
Snuba® was created for those who enjoy the simplicity of snorkeling and would like to experience the wonders of breathing underwater. Snuba® is an unique, patented shallow water diving system, bridging the gap between snorkeling and scuba diving.
Snuba® is safe and easy and does not require certification. Even if you have never snorkeled or can't swim, Snuba® diving is available for you. Snuba® is easily accessible to couples, families, children eight years and older, and seniors. Our Snuba Doo® program allows children as young as 4 years of age to participate. It is a great way for a certified diver to introduce non-certified partners to the underwater breathing experience.
Sunset Snuba is an excellent local company that has recently introduced this fun adventure here in PR. The owners Michelle and Adam strive to provide guests with a 4-star service uniquely designed experience to create memories that last a lifetime.
This NEW adventure out of Fajardo's Puerto Chico Marina offers guests a guided journey island hopping and snorkeling on their own 13' inflatable mini boat. The small motorized boats allow guests to get into many areas most visitors will never see while learning about the fish, coral and sea life from their experienced and wonderful guides. Swim, snorkel and enjoy a day out on the water!
All mini boats are equipped with a step ladder on the side for entry or exit. If you have physical limitations which would prevent you from using the ladder, your guide can bring the boat right up to shore so that all you have to do is to step in.
Mini Boat Adventures offers 2 daily tours with check in at 8:30 am and 1:30 pm. Tours are 3 1/2 hrs so are perfect for guests who prefer 1/2 day snorkeling activities. Rates are as follows:
- Single (the steering wheel is yours): $150.
- Double $75 per person / $150 total
- Double Plus One $75 per person / third preson 1/2 price 37.50 / $187.50 total
- Double Plus Two $75 per person / third & fourth preson 1/2 price 37.50 ea. / $225.total
Payment is accepted by cash or credit card (Visa and Master Card Only) You can book directly through their website. (Click on Orange text above)
Diving in Puerto Rico can be a great experience as the warm blue waters of the Caribbean don’t require you to wear a wet suit and visibility can range from 70-150ft . There are several great reefs and small islands on our eastern side out of Fajardo that extend out to the Spanish Virgin Islands. Sea Ventures Pro dive center offers multiple excursions for beginning to advance dives. 2 tank dives run $99 and afternoon 1 tank dives are $65 and include all gear. Open water certification classes are also available and require 3-4 days for a cost of $450.
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