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Scuba Diving In Key West

John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park Key Largo


No diving trip to the Keys would be complete without a day exploring the waters of John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park in Key Largo, where divers can experience the colorful, living coral reef and see the famous Christ of the Abyss, an 8.5-foot-tall replica of the bronze cast of Jesus Christ in the Mediterranean sea, submerged offshore in about 25 feet of water. Scuba diving tours and rentals are available directly through the park.

How Is Snorkelling In Key West

For non-divers, snorkeling in Key West is the perfect way to experience the beauty of the coral reef!

Key West is an ideal snorkeling location with many readily accessible, sheltered areas featuring plenty of stunning wildlife to see.

As the waters in most areas are relatively shallow, snorkellers can get a fantastic view of the reef and have a chance to spot larger marine animals such as turtles on the sand or seagrass covered areas.

Get Scuba Certified In The Florida Keys

Conch Republic Divers is a PADI and NAUI dive center. We offer all course from Discover Scuba through Dive Master. Whether you are a new diver just getting into the sport or want to advance your skills and knowledge we have you covered. Take the Advanced Open Water Course, Enriched Air Diver, or any of our specialty courses with our experienced and friendly instructors and take your diving career to the next level!

Contrary to popular belief we are not really in the dive business but we are in the memory business and we try to make those memories as good as we can one dive at a time.

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Usns General Hoyt S Vandenberg Wreck

This wreck is one of the greatest attractions and most famed dive sites of Key West. The Ex-Military Missile Tracking Ship was only sunk in 2009, but signs of marine life and coral structures have quickly made their home in its nooks and crannies. This ship is a massive 524ft , with the honor of being the second largest vessel in the world ever purposely sunk to become an artificial reef. Sitting at depths of 70-100ft , this advanced dive is a must for those planning Key West diving and looking to complete their Florida Keys Wreck Trek.

Where Is The Meeting Point For This Activity

Best Scuba Dive Options in Key West

Detailed check-in instructions including meeting point address, Google map, and parking information for Key West Afternoon 2-Tank Reef SCUBA Dive will be included in your confirmation email from Key West Scuba Diving. Please be sure to double and triple check your email address is correct at checkout so this important email makes its way to you!

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Spectacular Reefs & Wreck Dives

Southpoint Divers has been in business since 1991 and is consistently voted the best dive shop in Key West!

Southpoint Divers is located in the heart of Old Town, Key West on Front Street. Our shop, stocked with all your dive essentials and ScubaPro gear, is at 606 Front Street and our custom dive boat, The Phoenix, docks directly across the street at the Hyatt Resort and Marina.

The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary is the only living coral barrier reef in the United States. The Vandenberg wreck is the second largest artificial reef in the world.

Looking to advance your diving skills? Our PADI 5-Star dive center offers all courses up to and including DiveMaster.

How Is Scuba Diving In Key West

If youre looking for coral reef scuba diving within the United States, then your choices are a bit limited.

Fortunately, there is one part of the continental U.S. that has far more in common with the Caribbean than the rest of the country.

The Florida Keys and, in particular, Key West can give you everything you could look for in a perfect dive trip.

This article will show you how you can enjoy Key Wests fantastic reef and wreck diving and when the best time to visit is.

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Dive Key Largo Pennekamp State Park And The Upper Florida Keys With Rainbow Reef Dive Center

We’re just a short drive from Miami, located in the Upper Keys. Our new dive shop in Key Largo has everything you’ll need for your diving adventure in the beautiful Florida Keys! We’ve got the best of diving here, everything from extensive coral reefs, artificial reefs / wrecks, ledges, walls and centuries old shipwrecks. Oh, and don’t forget the fish! Depths range from 18-120 feet, with each dive site offering its own unique qualities! Our charters hit all the great spots, from Key Largo’s Elbow Reef down to Islamorada’s Conch Wall.

Best Scuba Diving & Snorkeling In Key West

SCUBA diving the Vandenberg in Key West, FL

BY Amber NolanTravel Expert

The Florida Keys are home to the only living barrier reef in the United States meaning the reefs are found in the deeper waters further from the shore. They are abundant with marine life including hogfish, butterfly fish, blue tang, snapper, swordfish, and barracuda not to mention some gnarly species of coral. Since the reefs are so far off the coast, youre going to have to make a day of it on one of Key Wests copious snorkeling excursions. While many opt to join the masses on a catamaran for a booze and snorkeling trip, we recommend catching a ride on smaller vessels that offer a more personalized experience. Divers also flock to the area to explore the Vandenberg and other modern shipwrecks and Spanish galleons, some of which the famous treasure hunter, Mel Fisher, made his fortune on. Adventure Watersports and Dive Key West are just two of the many outfits that offer dive trips. Here is our list of 10Best scuba diving and snorkeling companies to help you plan your underwater venture.

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Key Largo Scuba Diving

Scuba Diving Capital Of The World

Key Largo Scuba Diving is located 60 miles south of Miami and is home to some of the best scuba diving in the United States. The reef is approximately 4 miles wide and 170 miles long. Florida Keys reef is the third largest natural reef system in the world. Key Largo is also home to the 3rd largest artificial reef in the world. The 510 foot USS Spiegel Grove.

The scuba diving in Key Largo is an amazing experience that every scuba diver should try. Most the year water temperatures at depth are above 80 degrees. Visibility varies between dive sites and changes daily. On good day visibility can exceed 100 feet, on average its at least 35 feet. Key Largo has every type of diving and underwater terrain you could want. Scuba Diving options include shallow and deep reef dives, drift diving, wreck diving, and night diving.

Key Largo Scuba Diving is fully dedicated to providing our customers with a world class scuba diving experience. Our dive trips are planned by scuba divers for scuba divers. Many companies in Key Largo offer combo scuba/snorkel trips and pick a location that works for everyone. We welcome snorkelers and non divers but our dive sites are always picked to provide the scuba divers with the best trip possible.

Come Dive With Us!

Key West Scuba Diving

Key West is the best vacation destination for anything tropical, and especially the best for any activity that is in the water. With crystal clear, blue, ocean waters, Key West is the prime location for scuba diving or snorkeling, and conditions usually stay around the same year round. Our Morning Wreck Dive is a daily tour that leaves at 8:30 a.m. This tour takes passengers out to see the newly sunken Vandenberg, a 520-foot U.S. military missle-tracking ship.

For an afternoon dive, try departing at 1:00 p.m. on the Afternoon Dual Reef Dive. If you have people in your group that cannot scuba dive, then this is the perfect tour for you. It accommodates families with both scuba divers and snorkelers, and they can enjoy going out all together.

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The Diving Capital Of The World

The waters of Key Largo are perfect for all water activities explore the winding creeks by kayak, set off on a sunset cruise or take to the skies on a thrilling paragliding adventure. However, the treasure of Key Largo lies under the oceans surface, amidst the fragile, colorful coral reefs, unique shipwrecks and diverse marine life with over 500 different species of fish, from the impressive schools of blue-striped Grunts to toothy green Moray Eels. It is here you will discover some of the best diving in the world and get a true sense of why Key Largo is known as The Diving Capital of the World.

Decide If You Are Ready

Scuba Diving in Key West, FL

The following are an important consideration that should form the basis of your decision if you are ready. You need to evaluate your diving experience and your deepest previous dive. You will also need properly equipped gear for your safety. The conditions of the dive should also be favorable. Finally, ask yourself why you want the diving experience. Dont do it because everybody else is doing it.

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Our Key West Dive Trips

The Florida Keys is the most popular dive & snorkel destination in the world! The coral reefs of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary are home to the worlds third largest barrier reef and a whole array of marine inhabitants. Its world class wreck diving is anchored by the USNS Vandenberg, a truly remarkable wreck, fantastic dive and one of the largest artificial reefs in the world!

Reef Diving in Key West

INNER REEFS 3 ft. to 30 ft. depth. The inner coral reefs are a thrill to snorkelers and scuba divers alike! These extensive reefs are abundant in coral and marine life, with lost of available light and maximum dive time. All coral reef dives are two locations. Be sure to bring your camera!

OUTER REEFS 35 ft. to 45 ft. depth. The outer bar provides a slightly deeper dive on beautiful coral formations. These reefs offer some of the nicest corals, gorgonians and larger fish found in the Florida Keys.

NIGHT DIVES 25 to 30 ft. depth. We offer one tank night dives on the Coral reefs surrounding Key West. Let us introduce you to the joys of night diving, witness the coral polyps feeding, parrot fish sleeping and crabs and lobsters moving freely on the ocean floor. Our staff will be available in the water to guide and assist you.

Wreck Dives in Key West

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Are You Interested In The Ultimate Wreck Trek Experience

The ultimate wreck trek trail begins in Miami and ends in Key West, Florida. This encompasses more than 100 nautical miles of open ocean. Most of these waters are within the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. Theres an estimated 1000 shipwrecks within the sanctuary. The most notable wrecks are right here off the coast of Key Largo, Florida

Based on your interests we will customize a wreck trek of a lifetime. This scuba diving experience can be completed as part of a private charter or with other dive shops that we partner with.

We can even provide you with a personal certified scuba instructor to accompany you on the entire scuba adventure. Transportation, gear valet, and concierge services are available for all of our ultimate scuba diving experiences.

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Key West Vacation Rentals To Suit Your Budget

After an adventurous day exploring the depths of the Florida Keys, you need the perfect vacation rental to unwind in. Here at Compass Realty, we offer a nice variety of vacation rentals that can suit any budget. Our well-appointed rentals range from luxury condos overlooking the harbor to classic Key West stately homes all within the Truman Annex. To learn more about our rental options, check out our website or give us a call at 1-305-292-1881.

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Glad To Have You

The Usns General Hoyt S Vandenberg


The USNS General Hoyt S. Vandenberg Wreck off the coast of Key West has become a main attraction for divers from all over the world! She is the 2nd largest artificial reef, measuring in at 522′ long and 11 stories tall! Due to Hurricane Irma’s impact the ship now sits at its deepest in 165′ of water. The main deck lies between 100′ and 105′ with the tallest super structures ranging anywhere from 55′-70′ deep. It is at the top of the structure that most of the ship’s interesting attributes are located, some purposely cut from one part of the ship and welded elsewhere to make attention-getting dive spots from bow to stern.

Fun facts about the ship!

Length: 522″ 10″Beam: 71’6″Height: 100 feet from keel to highest point.

Don’t forget to dive your certification! If you are an eager Open Water Certified diver and want to dive The Vandenberg, Lost Reef Adventures require everyone to have dove within the last 6 months to a year, have 10-15 logged dives outside of your certification dives, and hire a guide to show you a great time while keeping you safe. Open Water divers will require a guide. Guides are available for your convenience. We offer morning and afternoon dives on the Vandenberg as well as double dives. Please call for specific daily dive schedule.

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What Is The Best Time Of Year To Scuba Dive In Key West

The Florida Keys have a warm climate all year round, but the summers can be too hot and humid for some visitors.

Many people will see this as a great reason to be in the water scuba diving rather than sweating on land.

While the winter does have lower temperatures in the air, the sea is also considerably cooler, and there will likely be choppier surface conditions and lower visibility on dive sites.

Hurricane season usually runs from mid-August to late September, so its generally better to avoid these times.

The peak season for seeing sharks is usually when the waters are colder, between around January and May.

Manta Rays might be spotted later in the year, during the months of June to August.

Turtle sightings are most common between May and September.

On balance, the best scuba diving season in terms of temperature and wildlife is generally accepted as between March and July.

A Guide To Local Diving In The Florida Keys

The Florida Keys is home to the United States only living coral barrier reef, making it an ideal scuba diving destination. From pristine, shallow coral reefs to epic wreck dives, the Keys offers something for every level of diver. There are plenty of shallow dives sites that can be enjoyed by both snorkelers and divers and each year thousands of divers flock to the Keys for the mini-lobster season.

Beyond scuba diving, the Florida Keys is a community that gives back. Both REEF and Coral Restoration Foundation have headquarters in the Florida Keys and have been pioneers in marine conservation initiatives. Whether you are looking to have a memorable dive experience or just looking to get involved, the Florida Keys is the place to be.

Use the resources below to find your next dive, jump in and become a part of this unique dive community!

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Get The Best Of Both Worlds

Want to explore the beauty of the underwater kingdoms that exist off of the shores of Key West, but don’t want to wear all the equipment of a scuba diver, learn how to scuba dive, or don’t want to have to keep coming up to the surface for air? Then choosing the new Key West Snuba Diving is the choice for you. This tour offers a safe way to experience being submerged in the water and going to great depths into the ocean like a scuba diver, but with snorkeling level skills. It’s fun, relaxing, and most importantly, memorable!

Key West Snorkel And Dolphin Encounters

Instagram photo by Justin Blakeley ⢠Mar 5, 2016 at 4:09pm UTC

Key West’s warm waters are the home to thousands of dolphins. These dolphins are very social and interactive with guests on the Wild Dolphin Encounter And Snorkel tour. Passengers aboard this intimate tour get an interesting look at the world of dolphins below while in small, personal groups which makes for a very personalized experience. Once arrived to the destination of the coral gardens, guests get to snorkel and see the wildlife up close and personal.

For reservations book online or contact us at 563-1805 for more information

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Where To Dive In Key Largo

Key Largo is a dream dive destination where well-preserved natural coral reefs lie only a few miles from the shore – shallow reefs for snorkelers and deeper coral-encrusted wrecks for experienced divers. A perfect paradise for both divers and snorkelers.The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary was established to protect the spectacular and unique marine habitat, 2,600 square nautical miles of underwater delights and natural wonders. Part of this sanctuary is the well-known John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, the countrys first undersea preserve, the heart and soul of this diving capital. An extraordinary underwater world of flair and color! There is a long list of coral reefs and beautiful dive sites. Join us as we share with you the best of the best:

Scuba Diving Key West Legend The Vandenberg

The Jewel in the crown of scuba diving in Key West is the now legendary Gen. Hoyt S. Vandenberg. This mammoth missile tracking ship was sunk in 2009 to create the second-largest artificial reef in the world.

The numbers around the Vandenberg are truly mesmerizing. She measures a whopping 522ft/160m and lies totally upright on the seafloor at 165ft/50m. while the main deck of the wreck is as t 100ft/30m, the best action is on the radar dishes mounted on the superstructures around 60ft/18m.

During her service, the Vandenberg was equipped with cutting-age radars to track, amongst other things, space capsules for the Gemini, Mercury, and Apollo programs. These dishes dotted about the superstructure are fascinating to explore and make for some incredible photo opportunities at the Vandenberg.

Since her sinking, the wreck has become a host to a large number of marine species, including Goliath groupers, Nassau groupers, barracudas, and sharks. These can be found along with the usual smaller marine life like octopuses, damselfish wrasses, and parrotfish.

As you can imagine, it takes time to explore the Vandenberg for a wreck her size. So, if you plan on diving the wreck on your next scuba diving Key West trip, make sure to pencil in your schedule several dives on this world-famous wreck diving site!

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