SNORKELING MANGEL HALTO WITH ARUBA BOB!!!
Unlike some snorkeling tours, they enter from the beach and not a boat. Using the underwater scooters they cover nearly one mile of reef. It is truly spectacular!
The goal at Aruba Bob is to give you, your friends and your family the most memorable snorkeling experience on Aruba. You will enjoy the most exciting and beautiful snorkeling in Aruba.
Kent, also known as Aruba Bob, Kyra, and Alex take pride in sharing their passion for the water with others. If you want to experience something fun, exciting, and unique, come snorkel with us!
This snorkeling excursion comes highly recommended in Aruba. Aruba Bob (Kent) is actually from the US (Indiana) and stays part time in Aruba and part time in the US. His daughter also works for him.
I'm normally the type of person that likes to "do things on my own" and save in cost. I have also been to Mangel Halto (last time we were here) and really didn't find the snorkeling "too impressive". However, I was willing to give it a shot.
We booked a private tour just for our family of 3 and were excited to see this reef everyone had been talking about. It's very hard to access this reef by yourself due to the "amazingness" is on the outside of this protected area. The water is a little rough out there and you have to be careful about possible water traffic. It's sure to wear you out without seadoo scooters to carry you along!
The team was very nice and informative and we were fitted with our equipment and we all piled into a airconditioned van and headed for Mangel Halto.
However, Sakari hitched a ride with Aruba Bob himself!
We arrived at Mangel Halto, gathered our equipment, the off to the beach we went for entry among the mangroves and shallow entrance.
We learned how to operate the scooters and away we went.
It was absolutely stunning out there!!! I had no idea this was out here and now knew what everyone was talking about! It reminded me of the barrier reef I snorkeled in Belize. Just so many fish and coral. Unbelievable!
There was one thing I was missing though....MY CAMERA! I'm a picture freak (as everyone knows) and on this particular excursion, they did not allow you to bring your own camera! I was heartbroken! I felt naked! I didn't like this rule!
However, Kent does take a camera and takes plenty of picture of everything you see and of course pictures of you while you are snorkeling. I believe he took about 150 photos that day! The only complaint I had was the pictures seemed pretty dark. I'm not sure if it was because we were so far out and the fish and coral were a little deeper than what I'm used to when snorkeling or the settings on his camera (he also uses an Olympus Tough camera like I do, but I'm not sure what model) needed to be bumped up lighter or maybe the camera was a little older and losing it's "umpf".
While it does take awhile to get used to holding on to the scooters, I don't doubt for a moment that I could have done this and took pictures at the same time.
Soooooo.......the pictures that you see here underwater are those that he took of us. However, I have processed them myself to make them lighter and brighter and easier to see and sharpened them to bring out the color.
We came to a shallow area and was able to rest for a minute. It was a VERY LONG trip. I was loving it. It's definitely worth every penny you spend and last for a long time.
Once it was time to head off again and back to the beach area, we would pass over a deep area (I believe he said around 50' deep) and they had a sunken ship there. We were able to observed from above and Kent dove down (there were divers down there) and take a few pictures for us. Kent is a diver as well. He told us that they do their open water certification here at this dive site and ship.
Sakari had a few problems with her scooter and the throttle got stuck "on" and wouldn't stop. So, the last half of the trip she had to hold onto Kent and he used her scooter to pull her along.
After what seemed like a very long time down there, he headed up to the surface and we headed back toward the beach. At this point Sakari said she was very cold and wanted to go back.
We finally made it back and it was a great day!