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Review Date       AVG       ShoreDiving Site
01/25/2009        3.58      St. Andrews Jetties, Panama Beach Florida, USA East
Took the family to PCB for vacation so we could dive the jetties. We had a fantastic time. St. Andrew's is a great place for the family. I swam and snorkeled with my 5 yr. old daughter (lots to see in the kiddie pool all by itself) while my wife and 14 yr old son dove. When they got back they swam while I dove. We made a complete day of St. Andrews almost everyday. However, do not be fooled by claims that the park store has an air station. They quit doing this a couple of years ago. Now you can only rent snorkel equipment. There are several shops in the area where you can rent a tank for under $10 just outside or near the park. The walk to the dive site is a bit cumbersome with all your gear. But it is worth it. We went in mid July and dove on the channel side just across the rocks from the kiddie pool. The sealife was abundant. We saw grouper, queens angels, crabs, sheepshead, sea cucumbers and more that I cannot identify. Jellyfish were also abundant and after 6 days in the water the entire family had felt the effects at least once. The highlight for me was on my last dive. I had a manatee swim up to me and hang out with me for a few minutes. This was unbelievable. Visibility was very good at slack tide; around 40'. However, started to fade when the tide started to go out. The current also started to ramp up at this time as well; pulling out into the gulf. There are lots of other divers there about an hour before high tide so it is easy to find a buddy if you want one and they were all very nice. Be careful of the fishermen's lines. There are quite a few people on the rocks fishing out into the channel. Be sure to carry a knife to cut yourself out of old fishing line in the rare event you might get tangled in it. I have heard many stories of rude fishermen who did not like the divers. We had no issues whatsoever. If you are looking for an inexpensive place to dive ($5 per car to get into the park) this is the place to go. Pack a lunch and make a day of it. I also hear that Shell Island just across the channel is a great place to dive. However, it requires a ferry ride to get there. We will return to the jetties this summer to do some night dives and hopefully see some octopi.

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