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Scuba Trip: Roatan, Honduras or Pearl Islands, Panama?

Scuba Trip: Roatan, Honduras or Pearl Islands, Panama?

Old Jun 11th, 2015, 08:00 AM
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Scuba Trip: Roatan, Honduras or Pearl Islands, Panama?

A group of five of us will be travelling this summer to do a week-long dive trip. We are all PADI certified, but of varying experience levels (most fairly beginner).

My sister (one of the five coming on the trip) lives in Panama, about an hour west of Panama City, and she's heard good things about diving at the Pearl Islands, which are about an hour south of Panama City in the Pacific. The main islands here are Isla Contadora and Isla San Jose - anyone know anything about diving from either of those places?

The other place we're considering is Roatan, Honduras. I know the diving is good here, but I also know it's quite busy and touristy - perhaps too much so? Or is it possible to escape the crowds and make it seem like you're a bit more secluded?

The other obvious dive choice in Central America is Ambergris Caye, Belize, but I think I'd like to save that trip until I'm more experienced and could do the Blue Hole - I haven't done deep dives yet, and I don't think I'm ready (plus, that trip looks like it would be a lot more expensive than Roatan or the Pearl Islands, and we'd like to keep it more budget this time).

Other than diving in the mornings, we like the idea of sitting on a lovely beach with a book for the afternoons. None of us are into partying (we're all 30s and 40s). Nice restaurants would be good, but we're also willing to do self-catering if we could rent a house with three bedrooms and kitchen facilities.

Thanks in advance for any help!
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Old Jun 11th, 2015, 08:04 AM
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Oh, and we're looking at mid-August for the trip, if that makes a difference in water conditions, etc.
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