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“Open water certification”

Huatulco Dive Center
Ranked #2 of 36 Tours in Huatulco
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: More than 3 hours
Owner description: Huatulco Dive Center as a PADI Resort offer you diving courses from beginners until professional level, diving trips, special diving trips, snorkeling trips, bays tour and fishing trips. Your safety, happiness and relax are our priorities!!! Let our PADI Instructors guiding you in the great scuba dive world of the Mexican Pacific Ocean on board of our 33 feet boat "MAKO" perfectly equipped, organized and comfortable for diving/snorkeling/fishing and touring.
Useful Information: Lockers / storage, Food available for purchase, Wheelchair access, Activities for older children, Bathroom facilities, Activities for young children
A TripAdvisor Member
32
Reviewed 27 April 2017 via mobile

Thanks to Luca and crew at dive centre enjoyed the days doing the course very much .Luca and crew where very helpful at every step along the way and felt very comfortable while doing course .They are very safety conscious and professional at what they do.They have good gear and nice boat all setup to make trip comfortable and easy to operate out of while diving .They go the extra mile to make everything possible .Thanks Lots Guys

Darrin

1  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LucaHDC, Owner at Huatulco Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2017

Hello Darrin, thank you buddy for choosing our dive center for your certification course! And thank you for your nice review. I hope you enjoyed your time with us!
Keep diving and come to visit us soon again ;)
Cheers!

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Reviews (273)
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8 - 12 of 273 reviews

Reviewed 25 April 2017

This was our second time diving with HDC. Same fantastic service. The owners and staff are wonderful, safe and attentive. We saw whales from the boat. Amazing! Marine life was very interesting. Saw many octopus, harlequin shrimp, nudibranches, decorator crab, orangutan crabs, electric rays, solider fish and many other things. Thanks.

1  Thank Marsha L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LucaHDC, Owner at Huatulco Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2017

Hi Nigel and Marsha, thank you guy again for keep choosing our dive shop for your dives in Huatulco! As always, was a pleasure to dive with you, thank you!
See you on December ;)
Cheers from all the staff!

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Reviewed 6 April 2017 via mobile

My 15 year old son and myself used this dive center to get certified , It was a great experience, they are easy to find , always felt safe while training, and all were a please to visit with. I hope to make it back to Huatulco to dive again with their team. Thanks again.

1  Thank nagogami
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LucaHDC, Owner at Huatulco Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 29 April 2017

Hi Dennis! Thank you very much to you guys for your review!! We hope too to see you again and dive together!! Tell Hayden to keep diving!!
Cheers!

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Reviewed 29 March 2017

Just Get Onboard with HDC!

My wife and I and our two adult children spent a marvelous week in the Huatulco area in early March. A true highlight of the trip was spending the day boating, scuba diving, snorkeling and enjoying an all-around wonderful time with Huatulco Dive Center on an excursion they call "The Bays Tour".

I am a PADI dive professional who leads numerous group scuba diving trips throughout the year. I always look for a PADI certified dive shop or resort when I go to book trips. This trip was extremely important to our family as it will be quite some time before we can get together like again. My daughter, who loves to scuba dive, had not dived with me for nearly 10 years, so I really wanted to make sure that we went out with a professional, safety-conscious, and fun shop.

Huatulco Dive Center and their capable owners and staff really delivered! They are a great group of folks and you must simply book your trips with them, be it for: fishing, whale and dolphin watching, snorkeling, touring the bays, or just about anything that has to do with going out on a boat during your stay.

For those not familiar with the area, it is a stunningly beautiful land and seascape of bays in the Mexican State of Oaxaca along the Pacific Ocean. Each of the bays has its unique character. In my opinion, the all-day tour of these bays with HDC (for those who don't mind being on a boat) is an absolute must.

HDC's shop is located in the Chahue Marina which is just about 10 - 15 minutes from most of the hotels, resorts, and vacation rentals in the area. The owners are Ana, a Mexicana, and Luca, a Northern Italian. Ana is a Divemaster and Luca is an Instructor. David, from France, is also a PADI Professional. All three of them are terrific and great to work with. I always judge a shop by their willingness and ability to communicate prior to the trip and Ana was simply outstanding. Ana answered ALL of my many questions and was just a peach to work with by email and phone. Staff at the shop have most languages covered and they all spoke splendid English (Luca's Italian wasn't even too bad...for a Northern Italian ;-)). BTW - Luca picked us up in his jeep at our hotel the day of our tour - very nice.

I cannot remember the name of the captain of their boat, MAKO, but he was a highly competent skipper with great knowledge of the seas and the creatures within. We began our tour heading out into blue to look for whales and dolphins. While we did not see whales, we saw numerous pods of dolphins and many ocean-going hawksbill turtles - we were even able to make out the wing tips of a giant manta ray - just wonderful.

My daughter and I loved the diving...note that this is Pacific Coast diving in the spring and so you will not get the visibility or large sponges or soft corals that you would get in the Caribbean; however, what you will get are the creatures - in great numbers and in healthy sizes, which have mostly been fished out of Caribbean waters. Ana was the Divemaster for our day trip and she did a great job. While my daughter and I were diving, my wife and son snorkeled with David while the captain kept a keen eye on everyone.

One of the land highlights was stopping for lunch at one of the bays (I'll keep which one a secret because I want all of you to go with HDC and experience it yourself). This particular bay had a series of beachside restaurants on a gorgeous sand beach. We moored out in the bay and were picked up by a small water taxi that brought us to a wonderfully authentic restaurant for a great lunch. Ana knew the owners and they all took great care of us. And BTW - the shrimp in ajillo...OMG!!!

Note that the boat carries bottled water, juice, beer, fruit, chips, and other snacks. The MAKO is 30' long and is powered by twin outboard motors with plenty of horsepower. A big plus is that the MAKO has a marine head (toilet) on board - really handy for a long day at sea! Also, the MAKO has a fixed awning over the boat so it is easy to find either shade or sun.
For divers, deep water entries are made via back roll and exits are performed by handing weights and then scuba units up to the boat and then proceeding to one of the two stern ladders. The ladders do not have handrails; however, without your scuba unit on and with the outboard motor housing next to you, it is a very easy water exit back into the boat.

OK - suffice it to say - great people, shop, boat, and captain. While the shop accepts a variety of payment options, I suggest you arrange your pricing in advance with Ana and pay your deposit via Paypal and then pay the balance in cash (Pesos) when you get there - it will extend your vacation dollars and is better for the shop. Also, please make sure to tip! Just go out with these folks, they are professional, safe, and fun. We would have gone out with them many more times during the week but I came down with the flu midweek and were unable to go again...but we certainly will the next time we go!

1  Thank Gary M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LucaHDC, Owner at Huatulco Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 29 April 2017

Hello Gary! Thank you very much for this great detailed review!!
Ana and David spent really good day with you that day in the ocean. I'm glad your entire family had enjoy the trip onboard of our MAKO, and I'm happy to read that you and daughter had fun during scuba dive with Ana, apart of being our bookings and office gurú, she indeed is a great Divemaster as you mention, and she is more than happy to dive with you again in the future.
Thank you for appreciate our professionalism and way to work, we love our work and our best gratification is to know our clients are happy at the end and spent great time during their visit :)
We hope to see you and your family again Gary! See you soon then!
Kind regards,

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Reviewed 24 March 2017

Overall I was pretty happy with this shop. However I do have one complaint.

As a fully certified open water diver I don't want to dive with discovery divers that have only watched a 20 minute video. I pay to have a dive master/guide on my dive and do that because I feel like that is the safest way to dive. When My dive master is preoccupied with 3-4 other completely inexperienced divers it takes away from my enjoyment of the experience. These Discover divers are always near panic and flailing about, so they ruin any vis and scare away all the fish. They also have little or no idea of etiquette and are constantly coming up under me or coming down on top of me, As a result I am forced to swim way wide of them and miss many of the attractions that the guide is pointing out. Then we always have to return to the boat way before experienced divers need to as they burn through their air at least twice as fast as an experienced diver, again, taking away from my dive (for which i paid full price)

So my advice would be to either host experienced divers and discover divers on different days or get another master diver/ guide so that the 2 groups do not have to go together. I feel that I should be a priority as well, to my master diver as I have paid to have a safe and good dive with the full attention of my guide. This could also be viewed as a safety concern, but as the diving in the Huatulco area is relatively shallow, I was not worried about that, but others may be. I have no idea the legalities that cover discovery diving.

Otherwise, the sites were good and close and the dive masters very competent, with great pictures for going through the dives beforehand. I would dive with this company again, but I would book to go on days that did not include discovery dives, and I would specify that to the shop beforehand when I was in the booking process. Ana, I am sure, would be open to that and would be accommodating.

1  Thank BanditTravels
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
LucaHDC, Owner at Huatulco Dive Center, responded to this reviewResponded 30 April 2017

Thank you for your very kind review, we're happy that you enjoyed your 4 days of diving (8 dives in total), sad that you maybe misunderstood the situation of your last dive.
The other divers was 2 Discover Scuba Diver and 1 certified diver plus you and your buddy plus your friend who was recently certified Open Water Diver with us (the day before).
About this situation I can assure you that HDC didn't violate any PADI standard, actually the ratio for a DSD is 4:1. (for student per 1 instructor) in Open Water.
About the attention of your divemaster (Instructor) I'm sorry that you feel to had less attention, actually I remember the desire of your friend to spot a turtle and I personally bring you and her at 4-6 feet from the turtle to enjoy more the experience and also I made before the safety stop with the DSD and after come back down to continue to dive with you, so I think that can be described as a personal service, the kind of quality service that HDC always try to provide to our divers.

Finally I'm happy that you enjoyed the underwater life of Huatulco and I want to assure you that we already have the plan for the next season to have one more instructor in our team.

Cheers.

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