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“Fantastic experience”
Review of Cresta Dive Centre

Cresta Dive Centre
Ranked #2 of 16 Tours in Saint Julian's
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Scuba diving in Malta, Gozo and Comino. Cresta Dive Centre is a PADI 5 star dive centre located in St Julian's.
London, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
6 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Fantastic experience”
Reviewed October 12, 2013

Just returned from Malta, spend time diving (learning). Fatastic staff. The dive centre is close to the busy district and the dive center is right on the edge of the sea so you could just go to the dive area. One can also choose to go to different areas where they take in there mini van. As I was learning, I stayed near the center.
The trainers are experienced divers. They took time and were very patients with me. I had a great first day but second day start was met with problems with my mask getting flooded. I just could not clear the mask. The staff, especially Charlie, David, Gavin, Clara, Carl, Alex and Martin were all very patients with me, took time to explore the reason and spend more time that they would have spend on someone. I completed my course and now I am waiting for my diving license. I would strongly recommend this dive center to any one who is new to diving. I will go back and take more dive with them soon. Thanks Chalie for a memorable experience.

Visited October 2013
1 Thank TravelManiac214
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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242 reviews from our community

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Level Contributor
14 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Scuba Diving in August”
Reviewed October 8, 2013

I went to Cresta during my vacation to do my Rescue Diving Practical course. From the start to the finish I was very impressed. I asked a number of question prior to my holiday and found the replies helped me choose this Dive centre, over others. Professional, and personal information helped me make the decision. Professional all about the course and what I would expect, the costs and the sites I could visit after my course. Personal down to trying to help my wife, who doesn't dive, be part of the whole event.

The course was extremely good thoroughly enjoyed it, David and Alex were both patient and I've now learn t about 'Pizza Pizza'.to call for help before I save a life.!!!!!!

I was recommended two Dive sites. Santa Maria Caves and P31.. Of my 50 dives to date Santa Maria was my best Dive to date and I've been diving in Caribbean, Red Sea and Bali.. Cave diving.. what an experience, you have to try this once in your life.... P31 wreck diving at it's best.. Do a search on You tube and see what i mean.

Many thanks to the team in Cresta..... I'll be back....

Visited August 2013
1 Thank PaulkScotland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brussels, Belgium
Level Contributor
29 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Refresher + shipwreck dive”
Reviewed October 3, 2013

2 years after my last dive, and visiting Malta, I needed to try a shipwreck on the island. My hostel (Malti) adviced me to contact Cresta's. I had my refresher (equipment check, signs, other tips) followed by a dive and exercises; then a second dive that i booked to finally see a wreck in Marina (X-127). Interesting, not that fancy but interesting. It was good for my level (17m, not too much current). Thanks to my instructor for her patience, and thanks for the team for good explanations and nice chat.

Visited September 2013
1 Thank bulbisi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Volda, Norway
Level Contributor
26 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“Professional centre with good service”
Reviewed September 23, 2013

I did my Divemaster course with Cresta this September, a very positive experience. My instructor Dave was extremely knowledgeable and professional, and so was the rest of the instructor staff. Also the DM´s were very helpful. I have been diving with a lot of dive centres, but the staff here really impressed me with their knowledge. My girlfriend took OWD with Matt, and gives him a 5 star rating. He made her a really good diver in just a couple of days. We were also very happy with instructors Martin and Gwawr. And of course Casey, who knows Malta like the back of his hand, and has to be one of the best instructors and dive guides on the island.

Manager Charlie organized everything quickly and smoothly, so the customers never had to wait more than expected. I noticed that on many dive trips Cresta was first in - first out, which is largely thanks to good planning and experienced staff. This is important when diving at the most popular dive sites, they tend to be really crowded.

Bear in mind that this dive centre, like most others, does not have fancy facilities with locker rooms and modern air conditioned classrooms. Nor do they have cushioned chairs and espresso machines. They do however have a toilet (unisex), hot and cold showers, a small classroom for theoretical lessons, water/tea/coffee and free wi-fi. In my opinion that is all you need. They obviously rather like to spend their money on good equipment, and we really appreciated that. Quality wet suits, fins, regs and BCD´s are much more important, both for safety and for fun diving.

If you take a course or go out on a dive trip with Cresta, you know you´re in for good diving. I am proud to have Cresta Dive Centre and Dave´s instructor ID on the back of my Divemaster card. Me and my girlfriend are both coming back next summer!

Visited September 2013
2 Thank Fredric B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Southampton, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
8 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Really disappointed”
Reviewed September 19, 2013

I went out of my way to dive with this centre based on their high number of positive reviews.

Let me first say that my partner did his Discover Scuba with Charlie and was very happy with his experience but he has never dived with anyone else.

I, on the other hand, have and I was not impressed. I am a relative beginner with ~50 dives and Padi AOW. When I arrived I was told that I could do two dives while my partner did his Discover Scuba which was great as I needed to put in some hours. I was promptly kitted up by Gavin who was extremely helpful but was going to be staying in the shop during our dives. The equipment was badly worn and all of it had holes, rips and broken zips. The regulators seemed in reasonable condition but there was no depth gauge -only air. It didn't exactly fill me with confidence. I did have my computer with my so I could tell depth from that but I like to have a depth gauge in case my computer malfunctions.

Please also note that there are no lockers for valuables and all your bags are left in an open classroom. There is one toilet/shower available plus a cold water shower.

Matt, the instructor who would be taking us wandered past fairly frequently criticising my choice of a full suit (I feel the cold) and readjusting my tank band such that I hit my head on my tank for the whole dive.

We then got onto the boat and had a quick briefing on the way to the dive site -a wreck called HMS Maori. I was buddied with Matt since I was diving solo and he told me not to stick so close to him that he could not see the whole group. It turned out this would not be a problem as he set off at such a pace that I couldn't keep up and ended up sticking close to a german couple who were happy to keep an eye on me. Despite leading the dive he failed to communicate with the group at all. At one point I looked up and saw someone inside the wreck then the one of the couple I was with signalled to her buddy that we were going inside the wreck. On all other dives I have done, something like that would have been preceded by a brief pause while everyone got closer together then a signal from the guide that we were going through.

We rushed around the wreck in just 49 minutes despite carrying a 12L and only reaching a max depth of 13m (Average: 9.5m). I came out with more than half a tank of air and I doubt anyone with us could have reached the safety margins set by the instructor.

We then had to get back on the boat. The entry is a back roll which I had not done before and someone did query how we would get back on. The answer apparently is to de-kit and hand up to the boat and then clamber over the side which I found very difficult. This is mainly because I am overweight and have very little upper body strength but it is something to be aware of if you choose to go out on the dive centre's boat. There is little more humiliating that having to be hauled aboard like a beached whale.

Once we were back ashore we stopped for 5 minutes for a drink and then were straight back out on the boat. I barely had time to ask for new fins as mine were split (broken not intentionally split) and felt horrible to fin with. My first pair had "bungie ropes" to hold them in place and they felt like they would come off at any moment but Matt demanded to know why I had picked new ones with clips claiming that the bungies were much better and more comfortable (while carrying his own fins with clips...).

We then set off on the boat for Sliema Caves, again having the dive briefing on the way. I asked Matt what signs he used to point out fish and he pointed and said "this fish, that fish" followed by "if you wanted to see fish then you shouldn't have come to Malta". He made sure to berate one of the couples for not keeping up and myself for not sticking close enough to him as my buddy, I tried my best to stick closer on this dive but again I could not keep up. There were lots of narrow swim throughs on this dive and this made it quite a challenging dive but it had really beautiful topography if we'd just had time to stop and enjoy it. The aim seemed to be to get through as many swim throughs as possible in the time period. The dive was a similar length, 44 minutes but the max depth was just over 18m so I suppose it is possible that air constrained this (although I still had 80 bar).

When we got back to the dive centre I sat down to have something to eat but after about 10mins was told to kit up again for my third dive of the day. This dive was with my partner having just completed his discover scuba course. Matt left Gavin to help everyone to kit up again and had gone down to the boat with the first pair by the time my partner and I were kitted up. Matt was supervising my partner and I while Gavin supervised the other pair of DSDs. My partner felt that he received adequate supervision although I am not convinced myself. The speed was better during this dive and although the time was short I know this was due to air constraints.

I learnt afterwards, from my partner, that he had overheard the instructors talking and they were being encouraged to do 5 dives a day. Maybe this accounts for the rushed feel to the whole day. I'm really glad that my partner enjoyed his experience but I can't help but feel that this was partly due to not having dived with anyone else. I also realise that rental kit gets some hard use and while it was still useable it was far from comfortable since the holes meant that the boots gave you blisters and the split fins felt uneven in the water. 5 dives seems a lot to try and cram into a day but if they are going to do this, why not give customers a choice of which dives they do? I had allocated a whole day for diving, fully expecting to have lunch between dives 2 and 3 as this has been my experience at all other centres. If you wanted to get in a few dives in the morning and be finished by lunch then this might work well for you but I just ended up tired and fed up. I also believe that the buddy system is a 2 way street and that dive instructors should be more receptive to the wishes of their group.

Maybe I just went on a bad day but I would definitely not dive with this outfit again.

Visited September 2013
2 Thank Chaos777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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