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Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

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Buffalo, MN
posts: 19
reviews: 10
Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

I am traveling to Puerto Vallart in April 2013 with my two adult children. We want to do some snorkeling. I have read a lot of posts regarding the tours that provide snorkeling. What I am interested in knowing is:

1) if you are getting into the water off of a boat, rather than the beach, how easy is is to get back on the boat? I am old and not as flexible as I used to be!

2)Which tours offer the clearest waters?

3)Which tours are you most likely to see dolphins, turtles etc. on your way to the destination?

4)Has anyone done the tour to Playa Los Colomitos?

Anyone who has done snorkeling in PV recently your feedback would be appreciated, Thank you.

posts: 222
reviews: 4
11. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

I have used Vallarta Adventures many times and there staff is wonderful - though I cannont say the snorkeling has ever been too great in PVR. I found the water not very clear and cold (I usually go in February)

Puerto Vallarta...
Destination Expert
for Puerto Vallarta
posts: 20,106
reviews: 5
12. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

Much better visibility in the summer.

posts: 212
reviews: 12
13. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

Just got back so I can answer some of your questions. Vallarta Adventures does a great job and their catamarans are very easy to re-enter (and I am old & weak in upper body strength). We did the Las Caletas trip, BUT that day there were jellyfish in the water so we were warned not to snorkel from shore. Instead they took a "tender" (panga) somewhere else and I passed because of the re-entry issue. Another person confirmed that it was difficult to climb back in. Toward the end of the day, though, they said most of the jellies were gone so I went in from the beach & the snorkeling was very enjoyable. Only had about 15 minutes in the water but spotted almost a dozen different critters. The whole tour was great & I recommend it highly.

Las Marietas trip was awful for snorkeling. We were not warned that there was a strong current to swim against. We were supposed to swim in a group through the cave to the so-called "Hidden Beach" against the current. Halfway there I was totally exhausted and gave up. One of the kayak guides threw me a rope & towed me to the cave. Once there it's dark going thru the cave sto nothing much to see & the beach, frankly, was pretty underwhelming. Just a little crescent of sand surrounded by rocks. On the way back the current was with us so no problem swimming back but there were so many people in the water I was constantly getting kicked & shoved & the water wasn't even clear enough to see much.

That said, I still think the tour is excellent. We saw blue-footed boobys which is the main reason we went to PV to begin with so that was a thrill. Also lots of other birds, some dolphins, and an incredible display of whale activity. That, of course, is the luck of the draw and it's the end of the season so not sure if you would see the whales. I wouldn't say DON'T go on the tour, but I would say to not do it solely for the snorkeling part. At the very least, I would question them thoroughly about it.

The best snorkeling we had actually was when we went to the public beach access just south of the Garza Blanca resort and snorkeled along the rocks right off the beach. PV is not known for great snorkeling, but we still saw lots of cool stuff. Oh, and we were happy we had our shorty wetsuits with us. Could've done it for awhile without, but not been able to stay out so long. Don't know how dif the water temp is in April, but if you've got them, I'd bring them.

Message me if you have any other questions. I'll be happy to answer them.

Buffalo, MN
posts: 19
reviews: 10
14. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

PDXJoanne, thank you , your info was very helpful. It sounds as if , based on other reviews, that summer is actually better as far as water clarity and maybe the water is a tad too cold right now. It is so helpful to hear from others who have gone, espcially recently. thanks again!

Buffalo, MN
posts: 19
reviews: 10
15. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

I want to thank EVERYONE who provided me info on snorkeling in PV. I feel much better informed and am getting so excited about our trip in April. Happy travels to all!

posts: 212
reviews: 12
16. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

Don't think I mentioned that Vallarta Adventures supplies wetsuits if you don't have your own. Another reason to give them a try as long as you want to do the trip for other reasons and not JUST for the snorkeling.

Broomfield, Colorado
posts: 5
reviews: 8
17. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

We just took a snorkeling trip out to Los arcos. It was a 1/2 day (10 to 3) with chicos dive shop it's on the malecon. $28 online $32 at the shop. ( we were indecisive about los arcos or the M. Islands) Not as glam as the bigger operators however everyone was super friendly. They had a good size catamaran and it was only my husband, my self and our 12 year old snorkeling there was a father and son from Wisconsin who dived. So the boat was essentially empty. So glad we were not on the bigger loud boats. We had Augustine with us while we snorkeled and he was great, pointing out things we might have missed, he kept diving down and bringing things for us to look at, starfish, a live puffer, a sea cucumber etc..... There is a short ladder on the back of the boat and the guys were ready to help. Lots of dolphins both ways. Hope this helps.

posts: 7
reviews: 5
18. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

I went with PV Sea Dive last year, and found itto be a very experience, with a smaller crew and more intimate setting. More personal, and less commercial. Have fun!

19. Re: Snorkeling in Puerto Vallarta-Specific Questions

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