Scuba in Merced

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The team at Tropical Adventures Scuba and Travel teaches classes, repairs equipment, and plans diving trips, all with a focus on building an active scuba community. Seasoned instructors with NAUI and PADI certification lead beginners from the classroom to the ocean, where they meander through kelp forests and master the art of underwater basket weaving. Experts coordinate travel to premier international and local dive sites such as Catalina Island, aiming to make the three to five yearly trips affordable and fun. The crew also recommends new and used gear for purchase or rental, including Oceanic booties, Tusa masks, and radar equipment that helps divers avoid traveling mermaid salesmen.

3921 Soquel Dr
Soquel,
CA
US

Scuba neophytes and schooled snorkelers alike can dive into a sea of inspiration at Aqua Safaris, a full-service scuba center minutes from the Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. With the four-week scuba certification course, budding aquanauts receive four three-hour classroom sessions, four three-hour pool lessons, and up to five ocean dives. All scuba equipment is included, but students will need to purchase their own snorkeling gear, a logbook, a training textbook, and bellyflop insurance. After four weeks, you'll be fully certified and ready to flap your fins at any waterhole across the world.

6896 Soquel Ave
Santa Cruz,
CA
US

Captain Aqua's enthusiastic instructors plunge developing divers and nascent Neptunians into the exhilarating realm of scuba in the introductory Try Scuba course. In the pool’s safe confines, the resident pros—with more than 50 years of combined diving experience—guide amateur aqualetes through the basics of breathing underwater, an experience as eye-opening and electrifying as Flipper's shrill rap battles with Shamu. Though prospective fin jockeys must provide their own towel and swimsuit, Captain Aqua's furnishes other necessary aquatic accouterments. Students should bring a mask, snorkel, and fins if already owned; otherwise, they are available to borrow, free of charge. Call Captain Aqua's to schedule a class, for updated info on class times and dates, or to show off a recently learned whale mating call.

250 Jackson St
Hayward,
CA
US

The Try Scuba lesson, aimed at newcomers to diving, begins with classroom instruction on scuba diving and the science behind it, followed by ample time in the meticulously maintained on-site, heated pool. Participants will learn several skills taught in a full-certification program, including how to breathe underwater, how to clear a scuba regulator, and how to use diving equipment. Throughout the experience, you and your aqualungs will be under the close supervision of veteran instructors, all of whom are certified by the Professional Association of Diving Instructors and/or have met all requirements of the Recreational Scuba Training Council under Scuba Schools International. As you float weightlessly through the water, take a moment to focus on the surrounding silence, the cascading light shining down, and the calming exchange between you and your lovingly pressurized oxygen tank.

4374 N Blackstone Ave
Fresno,
CA
US

Led by a stylist with more than 35 years of salon experience, the team at Speakes for Hair Tanning & Diving cuts hair and creates new looks with color, bleaching, highlights, and spiral perms. In addition to their salon services, the staff offers waxing, massage, tanning, and nail services.

2004 N Van Ness Blvd
Fresno,
CA
US

Carmel Bay Divers' instructors train, certify, and outfit scuba divers with the simple goal of getting a few more folks to come dive with them. The staff can be found in the shop just as often as beneath the waves at Monterey, the Channel Islands, or some tropical destination. However, they ultimately begin journeys at the shop, outfitting new divers with dry suits, wet suits, snorkels, scuba tanks, or whatever the occasion requires. As soon as everyone's dressed appropriately, though, they hit the water, cruising sandy depths and spotting everything from curious seals to bathing angel sharks, a species known for its love of caroling.

5859 Winfield Blvd.
San Jose,
CA
US