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“Scuba Diving in Punta Cana” 5 of 5 stars
Review of El Tour Caribe - Private Tours

El Tour Caribe - Private Tours
Playa Turquesa | Avenida Alemania D402, Bavaro, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
+1 809-251-6543
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Owner description: We are a Canadian Owned, locally based tour operator specializing in Scuba Diving and VIP service. We can privatize or charter just about any sea excursion you wish to do. We deal only with small groups and provide personalized diving experiences in Punta Cana and area. We can custimize your dive experience to your level of comfort and experience. We also offer all PADI Scuba Diving Courses including the PADI Discover Scuba Diving.
Grand Junction
2 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Scuba Diving in Punta Cana”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2014

This family vacation we stayed at Playa Turquesa in Punta Cana January 1 – 11, 2014. We booked all of our tours through Lise and Edwar of El Tour Caribe, also full time residents of Playa Turquesa. I can’t say enough good things about Lise and Edwar. Their customer service and their passion put them on a level that would be hard to compare to. No detail is left unplanned or unchecked. Whether we were with them on an excursion or with a representative of El Tour Caribe, we felt like royalty. Even more importantly, we felt extremely safe. Keep in mind my wife and I are both registered nurses in the US, so things like safety don’t go unnoticed with us.

Prior to arriving in PC, we prearranged 5 different tours with El Tour Caribe (parasailing, dune buggy, horseback riding, zip-line, and snorkeling at Catalina island) for this family of 4. Lise gave us the option to upgrade to the scuba diving option for Catalina Island once we arrived. I was very hesitant to commit prior to arriving and then again once we arrived because I had a very bad experience attempting to dive several years earlier in Jamaica at a “mega resort” resort that resulted in injury. When we met Lise and Edwar for the first time, they both took the time to find out what concerned me about scuba diving and any possible medical issues. After listening, they suggested that I attempt it again. The difference this time would be that it would not be a “mega resort” type dive and Lise and Edwar would take all the time I needed to assure my scuba dive was a success.

It started off with instruction and competencies in the pool. Lise and Franklin (El Tour Caribe employee) worked with my wife, my daughter (16), son (12) and myself. My kids interacted with Lise as if she was a longtime friend or family member. Her instruction with the kids was structured, serious but obviously enjoyable seeing as the kids were disappointed when the lesson in the pool came to an end. Instruction with my wife and I was also very structured, professional and yet enjoyable. After our lessons in the pool, my wife and kids were excited for the next day’s open water dive. As for me, I was still leery and concerned.

As planned, we were picked up at our door at 8 AM sharp by Lise and Edwar. We made the hour long trek in their car, not a big open air bus or taxi van filled with other tourists, to the town of Bayahibe. We were fitted for wetsuits and fins at a local PADI dive shop and then made our way down the marina. When we turned the corner and I saw all of the people in the marina waiting to board boats for snorkeling and scuba diving my anxiety immediately rose. Much to my surprise, we were escorted by Lise and Edwar onto a big boat that I was told could easily have shuttled 30+ divers out to the reef. However, on this boat, it was my family of 4, Lise and Edwar, the “skipper,” a deckhand, and 4 other divers with their dive instructor for a total of 12 people on board. There was plenty of room on the boat and it never had that “group dive” feeling.
We arrived at our first dive site and by then Lise and Edwar had all of our gear tested and ready to go. Within minutes we were in the beautiful water of the Caribbean awaiting the descent to the ocean floor. It was decided before hand to have my wife and kids descend first. Lise and Edwar accompanied them without incident to the ocean floor before Lise came back up to get me. It took awhile for me to ascend, but Lise stayed with me the entire time. She never pressured me to go faster or further than I was comfortable. I eventually joined my family below and our first dive was a huge success.

The rest of the day was even better. Our first dive lasted a total of 39 minutes below the surface. After a short rest back on the boat where we had snacks and beverages, our second dive was at a different reef, even better than the first. The second dive lasted a total of 49 minutes. I should mention that both dives Edwar took possession of our personal camera and took over 400 pictures of the family and ocean life during both dives. This certainly would have been an added cost with most anyone else, it was in Jamaica! After the second dive we had a private and catered lunch on Saona island. Majestic doesn’t come close to explain our time on this island. After lunch we had some time to take a nap, swim or walk along the beach. My family and I are extremely happy that we upgraded to dive option of the trip.

I spent a lot of time talking about the dive because that was the highlight of our trip, hands down. Scuba diving in Punta Cana alone is awesome. When coupled with the experience, service, and professionalism of Lise and Edwar with El Tour Caribe, you are destined for an absolutely wonderful experience.

The other excursions we booked thru El Tour Caribe were just as enjoyable and memorable. The zipline tour was amazing. Any concerns we had regarding the safety of such a excursion in a third world country were quickly put to rest. We all felt very safe the entire time. Be it the speed, the height, or the views, the zipline tour should make anyone’s list of top 3 things to do in Punta Cana. Parasailing, horseback riding and dunebugging were provided some diversity to the trip and we left with many memories from those excursions as well.

Again, you have many options when it comes to tours while in Punta Cana. Just take one step onto Bavaro beach and within the matter of minutes you will be approached by vendors selling tours. The benefits of booking thru El Tour Caribe are numerous without incurring a lot more cost, if any. If you want your vacation to be just that, I would highly recommend El Tour Caribe to anyone. They take all of the worries out of planning and enjoying excursions. We will return to Punta Cana in 2015 and we will book again thru El Tour Caribe, especially scuba diving!

Thanks Lise and Edwar, you absolutely blew away our expectations.

Visited January 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ElTourCaribe, Owner at El Tour Caribe - Private Tours, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you so much for your praise and wonderful review! It was truly a pleasure to help you make this family vacation the most memorable one ever.

We are thrilled that we were able to help you overcome your previous negative experience with scuba diving and show you the joy of the underwater world so that you could share this experience as a family.

We hope the photos bring a smile to your faces for a long time as you remember the thrill of your PADI Discover Scuba Diving Experience and the beautiful Saona Island. We hope you return next year to experience yet more fun and new adventures with us here in Punta Cana.

Take care,
Lise and Edwar
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186 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Cedar Falls, Iowa
1 review
“Fantasic experience from start to finish”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2014

At first I was concerned that El Tour Caribe was a fake because all the reviews were excellent. However, after spending 3 days with Lise and Edwar I have experienced first-hand how they earn their excellent reviews. I spent one day diving with Edwar and another day diving with Lise. They are very professional dive masters and made it a personal, enjoyable experience. On another day, Edwar and Lise charted a private catamaran for the group of 26 adults and 2 kids my wife and I were travelling with. Edwar and Lise made sure we were comfortable from 9 in the morning when they picked us up at the resort until about 7 pm when they dropped us off! The catamaran cruise, including the lobster lunch was the highlight my trip! 100% recommended!

Visited January 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ElTourCaribe, Owner at El Tour Caribe - Private Tours, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear Diver,

It was a pleasure taking you diving to some of our favorite dive sites here in Punta Cana! Thank you for sharing your experience with the Trip Advisor travelers and the world. It was great fun meeting all your friends and family and taking you all out on your own Private Catamaran Charter to Saona Island. We are pleased that you enjoyed out VIP treatment and service. We look forward to your next visit!

Take care,
Lise and Edwar
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Minnesota, Usa
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“Excellent day!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 16, 2014

Our group booked a Catamaran with Lise and Eduard. Due to the size of our group they let us have the Catamaran to ourselves. We were on the Atlantic side of the island, they picked us up on a bus and transported us to the Caribbean side. They were very accommodating!! Had a wonderful entertainment group. We went to a beach for a lobster lunch, went to a natural spring to see starfish, and just relaxed on the catamaran. They are wonderful people! Our group had a great time. I definitely recommend them!!

Visited January 2014
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ElTourCaribe, Owner at El Tour Caribe - Private Tours, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear guest,

Thank you for your wonderful review! It was a pleasure to organize your group's Private Catamaran Tour To Saona Island. We are pleased that everyone enjoyed themselves and that your group was able to celebrate the "after wedding" in style and have some fun! We hope you will all have great memories of your day in the tropical paradise that is Saona Island. We hope to welcome all of you again in the future.

Sincerely,
Lise and Edwar
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Colorado Springs, Colorado
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Excellent trip”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2014

We went scuba diving and snorkeling with Eduard. He is a great host and attended to every need including buying us water and snacks that were not included in the price of the trip. Had an excellent time!

Visited December 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ElTourCaribe, Owner at El Tour Caribe - Private Tours, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear diver,

Thank you for sharing your experience with the readers at Trip Advisor. It was our pleasure to take you and your family diving in Catalina Island. We are pleased that you enjoyed the attention and service and look forward to welcoming you again soon and showing you some more great dive sites here in the beautiful Dominican Republic.

Take care,
Lise and Edwar
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Columbus, Ohio
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Scuba Diving in Bayahibe”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2014

This was by far one of the best scuba excursions I have ever been on! Lise & Edwar were the perfect hosts! I e-mailed Lise two months prior to my vacation to get more information about scuba diving for myself & my boyfriend. She replied in perfect English and helped to provide all the necessary details for scheduling.

Lise & Edwar picked us at our hotel in a black SUV and drove us to the dive site. There was one other couple there, totaling to 4 divers (talk about a private dive!). At Bayahibe, we were given our wet suits and fins. I also did not have a mask and they provided me with one. That was IT! Nothing else to carry! We were then escorted to the boat. Lise & Edwar took care of ALL SET UP with our tanks! We did not have to lift a finger.

On the quick 15 minute boat trip to the first site, Lise gave us a quick talk on what types of fish/coral we would see on our dive. Then we were off! Edwar took great pictures of my boyfriend and I and we were able to purchase the CD for $40 USD. After the first dive, we boarded the boat and had a 15 minute ride to the second site. During that time, we were given fruit, muffins, water or soda.

At the end of the dive, we had a few minutes to change into dry clothes and back in the car to be dropped at our hotel.

Lise & Edwar were the perfect hosts, and I will definitely dive with them again in the future.

*On a side note, Edwar speaks very little English, however, this is not a problem because Lise is fluent!

Visited December 2013
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
ElTourCaribe, Manager at El Tour Caribe - Private Tours, responded to this review, February 10, 2014
Dear divers,

It was truly a pleasure taking you diving for our half day VIP 2 tank dive service to Bayahibe. Thank you for sharing your experience with the travelers of Trip Advisor. We are pleased that you enjoyed our personalized service and attention to detail. We hope to see you again soon and take you to some more great dive spots here in the beautiful Dominican Republic. Take care,

Lise and Edwar
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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