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Scuba at Sandals Resorts: All You Need to Know 2024

Sandals resorts are some of the best all-inclusive scuba diving resorts because scuba diving is free at Sandals! As long as you are already a certified scuba diver, you get 2 free dives a day during your stay at any Sandals resort.

Plus, Sandals resorts are located on some of the best islands for scuba diving in the Caribbean. This is why Sandals claims they are the top luxury all-inclusive scuba diving resort in the world.

Read on to learn all about scuba at Sandals, including the best Sandals for scuba diving, Sandals scuba certification, and more.

Is scuba diving free at Sandals?

The most important thing to know about scuba at Sandals is yes, scuba diving is free at Sandals resorts! However, this only applies to certified divers. If you need to get certified during your stay, you will have to pay for that (see below).

Once you are certified for scuba diving, you can dive every day (with a maximum of two tanks per day) for free.

Sandals Scuba Certification

If you are not already certified, you can take a full PADI certification course at your Sandals resort. The Sandals scuba diving certification cost is about $450 for the full course, and you will usually be certified and diving within about 48 hours.

If you know you want to do this during your stay consider completing the written certification course in advance. This will give you a better understanding of Scuba before you go and give you more time to enjoy your Sandals honeymoon or vacation.

If you want to dive on your Sandals vacation but don’t want to do the full PADI certification, you can take the Discover Scuba Diving course, which costs $120 and only takes 3 hours. You can then dive once a day for up to two weeks.

About Scuba at Sandals

Every Sandals resort offers scuba diving and includes it in your rate if you are certified. Fully certified scuba divers get two dives a day with a single tank or one dive a day with a double tank. Resort-certified divers get one dive a day, at a maximum depth of 40 feet.

Every Sandals scuba dive is guided by professional dive masters, and you can dive between 20 to 100 feet. Your complimentary dives will include transportation on Newton dive boats that have been customized especially for Sandals, plus all the equipment you need.

Wet suits are not included but are available for rent. However, since the water at all Sandals resorts is warm, you probably won’t need one.

There are more than 240 different dive sites at Sandals Resorts, and both beginner and experienced scuba divers can find the perfect dive for them. There are up to 30 dive sites per location, and most locations have specialty dives like wreck dives and night dives available, but these cost extra.

Sandals scuba diving reviews range depending on the location of the resort, but almost everyone raves about the quality of the dives and the staff.

You will need to fill out a Sandals’ diving medical form before being allowed to dive. If you need a doctor’s permission to dive, be sure to get that before you leave your home. Be aware that space on dive boats is limited, so you will want to make reservations for scuba at Sandals as soon as you get to your resort.

It’s recommended that you don’t dive on your last day because of an increased risk of Decompression Sickness. You should not dive any closer than 18-24 hours before flying.

Best Sandals for Scuba Diving

Sandals resorts can be found throughout the Caribbean, in Antigua, The Bahamas, Barbados, Curacao, Grenada, Jamaica, and St. Lucia. While scuba diving trips are included at every Sandals resort and they all have great diving options, not every resort has a diving operation onsite. (Some Sandals resorts will shuttle you to another location on the same island for the diving excursions.)

Sandals resorts with onsite scuba operations include Sandals Royal Bahamian and Sandals Emerald Bay in The Bahamas, Sandals Grenada, Sandals Royal Curacao, Sandals Grande St. Lucian, Sandals Grande Antigua, and Sandals Negril, Sandals South Coast, Sandals Montego Bay, and Sandals Ochi in Jamaica.

Here are the best Sandals resorts for scuba diving.

Sandals Emerald Bay and Sandals Royal Bahamian

If you’d like a scuba diving destination that is close to the U.S. so you can spend less time on a plane and more time in the water, consider The Bahamas. These islands, just an hour off the coast of Florida, are known for the thrilling sport of shark diving, as well as crystal clear waters and excellent shallow diving at places like the Southwest Reef off of Nassau, which has amazing coral formations. There are shallow reefs and 17 dive sites off the coast of the island of Great Exuma as well.

You can choose from two all-inclusive adults-only Sandals resorts in The Bahamas to take advantage of scuba diving in either of these areas: Sandals Emerald Bay in Exuma and Sandals Royal Bahamian in Nassau.

Sandals Royal Curacao

One of the newest Sandals resorts, Sandals Royal Curacao is perfect for scuba divers looking for variety. Curacao lies outside the hurricane belt, so it’s a great option for scuba diving in the summer.

Located off the coast of Venezuela, beautiful Curacao offers a wide variety of scuba diving sites, including options for diving right off the shore. Colorful marine life includes unique small sea life like banded corals, red night shrimp, red-banded lobster, lettuce sea slugs, flame back angels, gobies and blennies, frogfish, and pygmy angelfish.

There are more than 85 dive sites to choose from here, from shipwrecks to coral reefs to walls. One of the most popular Curacao dive spots is the Blue Room, an underwater cave that glows with a blue light.

Sandals St. Lucia

Sandals Grande St. Lucian, Sandals Regency La Toc, and Sandals Halcyon Beach

There are 3 all-inclusive adults-only Sandals resorts in St. Lucia, which is a top scuba diving destination in the Caribbean. Sandals Grande St. Lucian is where scuba diving trips depart from. St. Lucia’s clear waters have more than 150 different types of fish, and it offers a variety of diving experiences from shipwrecks to thriving reefs to protected marine parks.

One of the most unique scuba diving experiences in St. Lucia is to visit Sugar Beach for some stunning underwater scenery. Here you can dive around the base of the Piton mountains, where they form an 1800-foot drop off.

Anse Chastenet Marine National Park gives scuba divers the opportunity to see an incredible coral reef and a wide variety of marine life including lobsters, barracudas, and parrotfish.

Sandals Grenada

Grenada is known for its shipwreck diving and has actually been called the “wreck diving capital of the Caribbean.” This gorgeous island also features incredible colorful coral reefs like “Purple Rain,” as well as the world’s first underwater sculpture park.

Sandals Grenada sits on pristine Pink Gin Beach and is considered by many to be the best Sandals resort. One of the advantages of Sandals Grenada is that it’s just 5 minutes from the airport, so you can start your Sandals scuba diving adventure quickly!

Sandals Barbados and Sandals Royal Barbados         

These two Sandals resorts in Barbados are located right next to each other on a stunning stretch of the best island’s best beach, Maxwell Beach. You can easily walk back and forth between the resorts, giving you double the amenities and restaurant options.

One of the best dive sites in the Caribbean can be found on Barbados, in Carlisle Bay, which offers all sorts of tropical fish and marine life plus a variety of shipwrecks like the Barge and the Cornwallis. The water here is crystal clear, making it an excellent scuba diving destination.

Now that you’ve read all about scuba at Sandals, are you ready to book your trip? If so, you may want to check out our round-up overview of all the locations, or our in-depth reviews of each Sandals resort. Let us know which one you pick!