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“Sharks Every Dive!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Coiba Dive Center

Coiba Dive Center
Calle Principal (Main Street), Santa Catalina, Panama
+507 6780-1141
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Certificate of Excellence 2014
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Owner description: The Best Diving in Panama. Coiba Dive Center is located in the heart of Santa Catalina, Panama, just a one-hour boat ride to world class diving. Coiba National Park has been described by many as the "New Galapagos" and the "New Cocos," Isla Coiba is by far the best diving Panama has to offer.
Toronto, Canada
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Sharks Every Dive!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012

I dove with Coiba Dive Centre at the end of August, 2012 for week. Glenn and Julie run a tight shop. They really went the extra mile to make sure my trip was great. They also have the best in water staff (Ben and Luis). We saw sharks, frogfish, turtles, rays, eels, seahorse ... humpback whales (on the surface)!

Visited August 2012
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61 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Ghent, Belgium
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Professional instructors and great diving”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 16, 2012

My boyfriend and I did our PADI Open water diver course here and it was ran very professionally.
Our instructor Ben was very experienced ,professional, helpful and a very nice guy as well.
He adjusted the pace well to our own tempo considering I was a bit scared in the beginning.
Coiba island was out of this world in terms of nature.
Only the boat ride was worth it, we saw a lot of dolphins and whales.
It was a great experience for us!

Visited September 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Top Contributor
320 reviews 320 reviews
112 attraction reviews
Reviews in 128 cities Reviews in 128 cities
183 helpful votes 183 helpful votes
“Well run operation, excellent diving”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 6, 2012

I did the 3-day, 9-dive trip out to Coiba National Park and it was excellent. Coiba Dive Center run a very smooth operation. Dive Master Julie was very personable and helpful and looked after us the whole time, in and out of the water. Luis prepared excellent meals each and every time. It is not a cheap trip but considering where you are and the logistics of it all, it is well worth every cent.

Visibility was not fantastic while we were there but we saw multiple sharks on every dive, sea turtles, countless eels, frog fish, HUGE schools of fish, box and puffer fish, rays... and even quite a few humpback whales at the surface on our way to and from dives. On our last dive we even heard humpback whales singing which was a real treat.

I would highly recommend Coiba Dive Center

Visited September 2012
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none
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“great 2 day trip to coiba”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 4, 2012

I just got back from an overnight trip to isla coiba w coiba dive center and had a fantastic time. I was impressed w Glenn and Julie and thought that they were very customer service oriented! The price of the trip I felt was quite fair, but it was expensive. The trip included park fees, meals and shacks and after - dive cervezas :) the food was amazing (thanks again Luis!) . I felt safe w such experienced DMs and I know everyone on my trip adored Julie. I would highly recommend coiba dive vented.

Visited August 2012
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Dallas
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
55 helpful votes 55 helpful votes
“Decent diving but....”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2012

The day before I was going to go diving a bad storm blew through. When I dropped off my dive gear I asked Glen, the shop owner, what the forecast was for the next day and he treated me like it was a stupid question. Being the safety sort, I wasn't enthralled with the attitude and didn't want to be out in one of their little panga boats in high wind and seas. I really didn't like the attitude -- it was clear he sent people out no matter what.

We lucked out and had great weather -- a little rain, but calm wind and seas. The diving was good and the divemaster Luis did a great job. Easy going dives where he pointed out as much stuff as he could. Lunch on Coiba Island was interesting.

I suggest you bring your own bottled water. They had water in bottles but they were already open and I suspect filled from the tap. If you're doing a day trip get a box lunch at the Panaderia. I don't see the logic of paying an extra $100 to stay in a dormitory on the island and get very basic food and would also sugget day trips instead of the overnight on the island -- but that's just my opinion...

I spoke to a few people who really love Coiba Dive Center and have had good experiences with them.

It was $145 for 3 dives and they charge an extra 5% if you want to put it on a charge card.

Visited July 2012
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