I just completed my second snorkel excusion with Cozumel H2O on a recent cruise stop. I did a previous excursion in August, 2013. Both trips received a 5 star excellent rating from me. Having used them twice I have a greater appreciation for their service for 2 reasons.
The first is consistency. I received the same high level of customer service and personal attention from Loes, Miguel, and the staff on both excursions. Their passion and love for what they do is reflected in the service they provide and your overall experience.
The second is by way of comparison. I booked an excursion with another company on another cruise stop, Grand Turk, and the difference in the experience was night and day. That made me appreciate just how superior the service and overall experience is with Cozumel H2O. They were superior in every way including the focus on safety, the quality and condition of the boat, the ease of entry and exit on the boat, the personal service, the guides swimming with you the entire time, the guides explaining the fish you'll see and then pointing them out in the water, the serving of refreshments, the pleasant conversation between snorkel stops, and the way they tailor the experience to each person's experience and comfort level.
On this trip, there were about six divers and 3 snorkelers (me and a couple with limited experience). They managed both groups well. Never did I feel like my snorkel experience was diminished or affected by the divers. Loes accompanied the snorkelers and Miguel and another staffer (name?) accompanied the divers. As others have noted, while en route to the snorkel stops, they use a colorful chart to explain the marine life native to the area that you may encounter. And she teaches hand signals for the more popular fish, such as rays, barracuda, and turtles.
A couple of additional points:
Despite your snorkel experience or swimming ability, they do a remarkable job catering to your needs. As an experienced snorkeler and stronger swimmer, Loes let me explore while she attended to the other inexperienced members in the party. I did not feel like I had to reduce my pace or level. And when the other snorkelers tired and went back to the boat, Loes stayed in the water with me as we searched for nurse sharks (no luck this time).
By the way, the other snorkelers did not perceive that negatively. They felt they were allowed to snorkel at their comfort level and were highly satisfied. And when they wanted to rest, they did not have to swim back to the boat. Loes signaled the captain and the boat came to them.
Loes does an excellent job spotting marine life for you to see. I would have missed a lot if not for her ability, including the spotted eagle ray, multiple sting rays, a giant lobster, and a turtle. I was fortunate to have seen every fish on the chart except for a nurse shark, and much of that is due to Loes' experience.
Lastly, they are very flexible with the schedule so we stayed out longer than the scheduled time. On the way back to the marina, they radioed ahead to ensure a taxi was waiting for me upon return. Now that is going above and beyond.
A brief visit to Cielo. Not much to see here. It's primary purpose is to let everyone get comfortable in the water and with their equipment.
Columbia Shallows. This is my personal favorite - a lot of coral and marine life and not too deep.
The "White house." It's called that because it's located opposite a large white house on the beach. This stop replaced Palancar Gardens because they have been seeing spotted eagle rays and there is a lot of marine life. I preferred the change as I think Palancar's depth limits how much snorkelers can see up close. This site rivaled Columbia and we saw a huge spotted eagle ray plus a lot of other marine life.
Santa Rosa wall. The focus here is on the significant change in depth from relatively shallow to incredibly deep.
I will use Cozumel H20 on my next visit. And you should too!
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