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“Favorite Snorkeling in Caribbean to Date!”
Review of Eco-Snorkeling - CLOSED

Eco-Snorkeling
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Attraction details
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Reviewed February 28, 2012

My wife and I just returned from a cruise that included stopping in St. Maarten for this excursion. Of the 5 islands that we snorkeled on this cruise, this by far was our favorite. Isabelle gave us a guided tour that was just fantastic and full of very interesting and useful information. She pointed out a bunch of stuff that we didn't get to see on any of the other islands like squid and lobster.

We also love the message that comes along with this excursion. I think that it is great that St. Maarten is taking these big steps to protect and rehab their coastal waters.

The island itself was beautiful and enjoyable. After we finished snorkeling, we spent some time walking around, doing a little shopping and enjoying a wonderful French meal!

We hope to get back to St. Maarten again in the near future!!

3  Thank stillmissmaine
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (67)
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29 - 33 of 67 reviews

Reviewed January 8, 2012

We went snorkeling twice at this location on Islet Pinel. The first time we took the guided tour, and the marine biologist who led us was extremely helpful. She gave us lots of information before we went out on what to look for, how to protect the reef, helped us with our equipment, and then led us around the reef for about an hour, pointing out plants, coral and fish. We saw tons of beautiful fish in their natural environment, without luring them with food, which is bad for the fish. We went back later in the week to snorkel on our own, but she warned us it was "murky" that day due to the winds/turbulence. Indeed, the water was cloudy and it was more difficult to find/see fish, but we still saw a lot and realized how lucky we had been the previous day! So don't be discouraged if it's a murky day -- it's still fun, and try again another day. She will let you know the conditions before you rent, and there's a beautiful wild beach just a short hike across the island, too.

7  Thank Cathy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 18, 2011

We booked online with Isabelle. Weren't sure what to expect. She set up our itinerary by the hour & everything fell into place just as she told us it would. We met the cab (included in her price), got to the ferry, when we got off the ferry she was there with a sign with our names on it. We had gotten sick on the cruise, so we told her we shouldn't snorkel, so she reduced our price & got us lounge chairs & umbrellas on the beach. The island is beautiful, from what we could see from a walk around the island the snorkeling would have been awesome. The island is clean, food good & Isabelle made sure we were looked after all day. Even about a half hour before we were to leave she found us & told us to start getting ready to go back. We hated to leave & next time we are at St. Martin, we will definitely be going back on her tour. Also, I somehow didn't bring enough to pay her for the tour, so she said no worries pay me when you get back home. HOW TRUSTING IS THAT!!!!!
Thanks for a fabulous time on Pinel Island.

Dan & Cindy

4  Thank Daniel O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 6, 2011

We came to St Maarten on a cruise ship stop and had read about Ecosnorkel on Trip Advisor and were excited about doing something new with an audio tour. Based on other reviews we made arrangements for a guided audio snorkel tour with Isabelle. Isabelle made arrangements for pick up at the cruise ship terminal and the driver was there waiting for us when we arrived. The round tirp transportation to the ferry was at no additional cost other than a tip for the driver. It was about a 20 - 30 minute ride to the ferry that takes you over to Pinel Island. That ride was $7 round trip. Once on Pinel Island we made our way to Isabelle's dock where we received our equipment and instructions on how to use the audio snorkel, She also provided a laminated card showing the various kinds of fish we might encounter. I can't say enough good things about Isabelle as a guide. She is ver professional and informative. Unfortunately the audio portion of the snorkel equipment failed which is really what brought us to Pinel in the first place. Isabelle was kind enough to reduce the pirce of our tour due to the equipment failure. The other thing that made the snorkeling disappointing was the fact that the water was very cloudy that day. St Maarten had just had two days of heavy rain prior to our arrival. We have done a lot of snorkeling and this was not one of our favorites. We spent the remainder of our time on the island at the adjacent beach where you can rent umbrellas, lounges etc and purchase lunch.

1  Thank greg_mc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 5, 2011

My husband and I saw the Wakawa reviews on Trip Advisor before we went to St. Maarten and thought it would be a great excursion! When we got there no one had heard of it. Luckily we found a free wi-fi spot and got Isabelle's contact info...including her cell #...she actually answered...and we were able to book it for the next day. A ferry takes you from the French Cul-de-sac to Pinel Island for $7 ea. round trip and Isabelle is waiting for you on the dock. She gives you a brief explanation of the island as you take a short trip down the trail to her "office". Seriously, best office EVER! You can rent gear, or bring your own. She provides the snorkel with a radio hydrophone...neat effect...soothing music with commentary. Personal belongings are locked up while snorkeling, so bring your camera & cash for the beach bar after your swim. Isabelle is very passionate about protecting her reef...to the point where she provides eco-friendly sun-screen...so do your part to preserve and use it! The snorkeling here seems to be the best in St. Maarten. (Second place was Divi little bay...our resort. Tintamarre and Creole rock were lame...skip it!) Isabelle's passion for the reef, marine knowledge, and oceanic experience make her the perfect guide! She stays close to you with a floatation buoy in case you need it...she takes the time to explain what you’re seeing (then dives under to point it out)...does a great job of making you feel comfortable in the water (gave me great advice and tips that I'll use for future snorkeling)...even in the rough wavy part around the point. We were the only couple she had that day, so we got the special extended version that took us to smaller reef, closer to the beach area...saw a starfish as big as a family sized pizza and a lot more marine life. Prices are very reasonable, schedule is flexible, service is exceptional, and expertise is phenomenal!!!!! Absolutely a must do in St. Maarten! And…the pictures she takes of you and the marine life will be in your email before you get home…for FREE! Now, that’s service…worth every penny!

3  Thank Vaughnn_Jessica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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