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“Great snorkeling trip to Molasses and White Banks”

Quiescence Diving Services
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Since 1977 Quiescence has concentrated on providing it's clientele with an un-crowded and personalized way to enjoy the sport of diving - both scuba diving and snorkeling. We have three boats here at Quiescence, and each operates with a maximum of six passengers to provide each customer with personalized attention, comfort, and safety. This also gives us the ability to take our divers out to spots not normally visited by divers. Our charters operate within the Key Largo National Marine Sanctuary, John Pennekamp State Park, and beyond. Each dive location is selected first and foremost by the customer's wishes, supported by recommendations by the Captain as to local conditions.
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Reviewed August 31, 2013

Our party highly recommends Quiescence (hereafter Q) and Capt. Ryan in particular for snorkeling the Key Largo reefs.

I called Q because they have a limit of six people per boat and as a frequent visitor to the Keys I wanted a trip that would go where I wanted to go. We picked a day that he weather was nearly flat calm with the hope of going to Molasses Reef. When you've been to Grecian Rocks (the default site for Pennycamp boats) a couple of times you hope never to be stuck on a boat going there again. The personable Q employee I spoke with on the phone before making my reservation assured me that my party of five would have a lot of input. I called for a reservation with my credit card the day before we wanted to go. This will not work if you want to go during high season! We visited in late August. Be aware that Q has a 48 hour cancellation policy, and ask them what that entails. Also ask about the weather policy. When we arrived 30 minutes early for our tour the counter help was efficient and polite. We took care of paperwork and waited for the boat to return from the morning tour.

The morning group had a delay in getting underway, some late arriving guests, we were told. The boat returned about 30 minutes late, which meant they didn't have their trip cut short, and I was assured that ours wouldn't be either. Capt Ryan gave us a safety briefing on the way out of the harbor. He has a background as a marine science teacher and was a delightful asset for our trip. In about forty minutes we were on the edge of Molasses and gettting in the water. Capt Ryan prepared us for the currents that affect that spot, told us to swim upcurrent past the boat so that if we tired we could just drop back down to the boat. After 10 minutes I noticed my wife, who's shoulder isn't strong, was happily hanging on the end of the safety bouy line behind the boat and asked Capt Ryan if we could move to a spot with less current. No problem. The other side of Molasses was better current-wise. After about 45 minutes there we asked the captain to suggest a shallower reef and he took us to nearby White Banks, where the brain corals are amazing, the largest about 8' high and wide. We were in the water for about 2.5 hours all told, a trip that cost us $49 each plus tax and tip. You can spend $15 less on a "cattle boat" but the extra value of personal attention and Capt Ryan's superior service was worth every extra dollar.

Since this is a review of the people at Q I don't want to spend your time enumerating the species we saw, but do go to Reef.org if you want to see the entire cast of this or any reef. Very handy. Briefly, we saw a huge grouper, lots of barracuda, at least three docile nurse sharks, a big permit, a turtle, a supermale rainbow parrotfish and other reef fish galore, maybe 35 species in all.

1  Thank Seacate
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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187 - 191 of 288 reviews

Reviewed August 21, 2013

We have dove with this shop three times over 6 years. I wouldn't dive with anyone else in Key Largo. We have dove with 5 different captains and each and everyone has been great. They are very experienced and knowledgeable. They take care of everything. Its a great way to see the reefs or a wreck. They take as few as 2 people or as many as 6. We dove the Spiegel Grove with just the 2 of us.

Thank Marc B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 15, 2013

We had a wonderful time. Don our Captain was great and soooo calm it made a huge difference for our first time experience. Go with them, you will not regret it.

Don , if you read this....again many thanks from your august 14 french Canadian party of 5 ;-)

Thank gio g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2013

It was almost like having our own boat. Their boats are small but that means groups are tiny. It was just us and another couple. The staff were great and very knowledgeable. Wish we would have gone here first.

Thank Corderoi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 12, 2013

The first day we scheduled to snorkel, there were high winds. The staff, though, pointed us to nearby attractions we quite enjoyed. We returned the next morning and went out with Harry. I was a little unsure about him at first. He's more of the "weathered seaman" personality than the young, friendly staff we encountered elsewhere. It turned out to be just my mother, son and myself on the trip. He stopped at a sheltered but boring first place and tested my skills. Seeming satisfied, he took us to a fantastic reef he called "Pristine Reef". As soon as I got off the boat, a giant spotted eagle ray was cascading under my feet! Incredible! The beautiful coral, colorful foliage and both schools and singular fish were spectacular. My mother got sick, my son got cold and a storm was rolling in, but Harry caught on to my enthusiasm and made it his mission to ensure I got to see what he and the sea had to show. His vast knowledge and appreciation of the ocean and it's bounty was evident. As the storm rolled in, Harry's experience and excellence in piloting boats and navigating rough seas was evident.
I can't say enough great things about Quiescence and all of their staff, despite less than perfect conditions. Thanks again Harry and all for a fantastic experience!

Thank Laura L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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