Scuba Diving in Cuba

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					Scuba Diving in Cuba
Why Go?
Scuba diving in Cuba has become hugely popular in recent years, and it's
easy to see why. The water is warm and crystal clear, and the vibrant
underwater wildlife and excellently preserved coral reefs make it a key
destination for avid scuba divers.
The sheer number of great dive sites in Cuba is staggering, far too many
to explore in a single Cuba diving holiday. Many keen scuba divers return
to the island year on year to explore some of the more out of the way
places. The sites also present a good variation in their level of
difficulty, so diving in Cuba is suitable for both beginners and veteran
Scuba diving in Cuba is a big business and there are plenty of companies
to choose from, especially around the most popular dive sites. Note that
if you have dived before, you must bring your certification card with
you. If you are a beginner, many companies run courses that will get you
certified in a few hours.
When Should I Go?
The rainy season runs from May to October; the most popular (and
expensive) time to go diving in Cuba is between November and May. Plenty
of good diving can still be done all year round - the average water
temperature is a balmy 24 degrees Celsius. Be aware that once every two
years or so Cuba experiences a hurricane between August and September
along its east coast, so it is worth researching if a hurricane is
expected to hit before you book your holiday!
Where Should I Go?
There are great dive sites suitable for Cuba diving holidays around the
entire coast of the island, but the resort of Cayo Coco is a particular
highlight. Located on the north of the island, a magnificent coral reef
is half a mile from the coast and this particular part of the Cuban coast
is teeming with tropical fish, giving divers plenty to see underwater.
Out of the water, Cayo Coco features the finest beaches in Cuba, and the
numerous hotels and dive companies that are set up at this resort mean
that you'll have little trouble finding places to stay and companies to
dive with.
Maria la Gorda is equally popular, and is regarded as one of the best
sites for scuba diving in Cuba. Situated in the midst of a national park,
Maria la Gorda provides a more secluded experience than Cayo Coco -
there's little here except for natural beauty, a few apartments and
restaurants, the dive centre and some of the best diving on the island.
The dive sites are characterised by steep drops, and sheer walls that are
riddled with caves and tunnels to explore.
If you'd prefer to go diving amidst ship wrecks rather than coral reefs,
then Santiago de Cuba is the place to go, as there are a number of well
preserved wrecks that are safe to explore.
How Much Will It Cost?
Naturally, the cost of scuba diving in Cuba will vary depending on the
season you visit and the company that you go with. Single dives typically
cost between $25 - $50 US, with discounts available if you buy several
dives at the same time. Many companies now offer Cuba diving holiday
packages, including flights, accommodation and diving costs, which can
offer good value and save you the hassle of putting everything together
Emma Lelliott is the general manager of Captivating Cuba, an independent
Cuba holiday specialist. With offices in Havana and the UK, Captivating
Cuba are experts in putting together the very best Cuba diving holidays.

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