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SCUBA diving in Tampa, Fl area?

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  • SCUBA diving in Tampa, Fl area?

    Hi guys I have been looking up information on the internet. But I have never been SCUBA diving and I don't know what to look for in a dive shop or a dive area.

    I had LpBronco tell me about Clearwater, Fl as a place to dive and can anyone expand on Clearwater, Fl as a dive place or recommend another place; shop to check out before leaving to Tampa, Fl.

    Thanks,
    HaveANiceDay

  • #2
    Re: SCUBA diving in Tampa, Fl area?

    I know that I got my "C" card at Cortez, which is basically in Bradenton just south of Tampa. If you really want good diving you can go to the Keys. Are you looking for gear as well?






    "TG was created to cater to a VERY specific type of gamer rather than trying to appeal to the greater gaming population....Tactical Gamer is not mainstream. We are not trying to attract mainstream gamers" ~ Apophis

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    • #3
      Re: SCUBA diving in Tampa, Fl area?

      Gonna have to disappoint you here buddy.

      Grew up in tampa. Tampa SUCKS for diving. The bay is muddy and you cant see more than ten feet, not that theres anything to see anyway. Cant dive around any of the bridges by law (the only one that might be cool to dive on would be the Sunshine Skyway anyway because of the old bridge). When you get out off the beaches, theres not a whole lot there. No reefs, no real wrecks, and the depth gets pretty steep not too far offshore. The water is clear-ish, but thats about all (visibility is only about 20 feet on a GOOD day). Currents and rips along the beaches are pretty rough as well. If you were to charter a boat out to Egmont Key, you might find some old civil war fort wreckage about 6 feet down, but you dont even need scuba gear for that.

      You'd be much better off driving 6 hours down to key largo and diving John Pennycamp Coral Reef. It's the only completely underwater state park in the whole country, and for good reason. Literally thousands of dive spots with everything from wrecks and reefs to giant 25 foot tall statues of jesus 60 feet down in a coral hole.

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      • #4
        Re: SCUBA diving in Tampa, Fl area?

        40 Fathom Grotto is pretty cool as well, though it is fresh water, Are you certified? I know that the dive shop that I go to wont fill your tanks unless you are.






        "TG was created to cater to a VERY specific type of gamer rather than trying to appeal to the greater gaming population....Tactical Gamer is not mainstream. We are not trying to attract mainstream gamers" ~ Apophis

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        • #5
          Re: SCUBA diving in Tampa, Fl area?

          No, I am not SCUBA certified. I was looking for something to do while in Florida for a couple of days and thought hey SCUBA diving sounds fun. But probably genaralized Florida with white sandy beaches like many people do to Texas with Longhorn cattle and everyone wears a hat and rides a horse.

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          • #6
            Re: SCUBA diving in Tampa, Fl area?

            A quick hint. Find a dive shop in your local area. I know here, most have a pool, and offer whats called a discover scuba class. I know it sounds really boring, but its extremely helpful. You are able to go try scuba in an confined area, and practice all of the basic skills before trying it in an open environment. When you get to tampa, you will still be required to demonstrate that you know everything, but at least you have already done it, and have a idea on what to do.

            As for what to look for, the biggest thing I would recommend is a PADI dive shop. They are probably the, biggest organization for scuba, and as far as I am aware, they have very strict standards on the dive shops which can fly there flag. On top of that, look around. Make sure everything looks good. Dont put to much emphasis on the size of the shop. On my trip a couple months ago to St. Marteen, the shop I dived out of was not much bigger than a shed. Just basicly a spot for people to check in and store there equipment. However, everything was in great condition, and the people where great (and so where the dives).

            Also, if you talk to the people at a local dive shop, they might know of a couple shops in the area as well.

            On top of that, only other thing I can recommend is have fun.

            http://www.padi.com/scuba/default.aspx

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