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One of the best places to scuba dive in Panama is in Bocas del Toro. I can completely agree as there are dive shops everywhere and getting out to the sites is super fast and easy.
I dove with Bocas Dive Center. This is the dive shop located at the southern end of Bocas Town across from the Bocart restaurant. Many dive shops in the area have similar names so be sure to Google the location and address first or verify exactly where the shop is.
Since I was staying with Habla Ya Spanish Schools, the dive shop was chosen for me. That is who they use to send their students out to and get discounts for them. To me – it did not matter who I dove with and I did pop into other dive shops to see the grounds and prices.
Almost all diving prices in Bocas are around the same price. Bocas Dive Center is on the higher end where you can have a two tank fun dive for $110 or one fun dive for $60.
I got there early to check in and there were students learning to dive reading in one area, others drinking water in another, and others on the dock waiting to jump in.
The boat is right there with all the gear and this is the ONE SPOT I HAD A HOT SHOWER.
I swear, I never had a hot shower elsewhere on the island. This dive shop has it and you can use it.
The staff were organized, everything was clean, and the dive sites were all close.
It is so easy to dive with this shop because of the location. Many dive sites are within 5-10 minutes of the shop. It is not too busy to get out on the boat because they are at the south end of town.
In between dives, the boat goes back to the shop and the staff switch out the gear and tanks right there while you can get off and take a break or use the bathroom.
The dive sites had great visibility when I dove. You can see 60 feet out or more. There are plenty of fish everywhere.
The two dive sites I visited were both wrecks named the Wreck and the Playground.
Both wrecks were small enough to cover the entire grounds. I loved that the divemaster took us around a few times and got us to see it at all different angles.
At the end, we all watched the sunset and the owners opened some wine to share with me! Hanging out on the deck with them was the perfect ending to a happy diving day.
Note – I did the two tank fun dive in the afternoon, and not the morning. Therefore once it was finished, the shop closed up and was done for the day. There would be no drinking wine if it were in the morning.
Where have you gone diving in Bocas?