Lauderdale Diver Costa Rica Group Dive Trip

October 5-12, 2019

Lauderdale Diver is excited to announce we will be adding some group dive trips to our calendar this year. The first of which is a trip to the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica to enjoy diving in the Gulf de Papagayo!

This trip is being put together by our website guy, Jon Rowe. Jon is  a divemaster whi did his internship in Costa Rica 6 years ago with the same dive center who we will be using for the diving on the trip.

Depending on numbers and availability there may be others from the shop who join the trip.

8 Days 7 Nights At The Beautiful Riu Guanacaste

For this trip we will be staying at the beautiful, all inclusive Riu Guanacaste. This hotel is a large hotel which is located on a very large beach called Playa Matapalo. The Riu offers truly all inclusive dining and drinks with a multitude of dining options available. There is a selection of different local “Tico” cuisine as well as many different international and American type dishes. There are 5 a la carte restaurants which are located on the resort for fine dining at no additional charge.

The resort features a massive pool, nightly entertainment, several bars, beach activities, etc.

5 Days of 2 Local Tank Diving

Included in the vacation pricing is 5 days of two tank boat diving. You can add a third dive on any day for an extra $25 per day.

You can also upgrade to two different dive locations (Bat Islands or Catalinas) during your trip if you are interested. The three dive locales are detailed below.

Local Diving

The local diving in the Gulf de Papagayo is fantastic. On any given dive you will see a large quantity of marine life which is also very diverse. On local dive trips you will see several species of rays (butterfly, cownose, eagle rays, common sting rays, electric rays, and more), tons of moray eels (several different sizes and colors), massive schools of fish, octopus, turtles, nudibranch, clown shrimp, etc. There are also several dive sites where you will find white tipped reef sharks. October is also a very active time for humpback whales in Costa Rica. This past October the dive center was lucky enough to have several dives with humpbacks and their newborn calves.

Visibility can vary a lot from day to day in Costa Rica. However, this time of year you are likely to experience between 30-50 foot visibility and low 80’s water temperatures. A 3mm suit is recommended.

 Bat Islands

The Bat Islands are a chain of islands which are located off of Santa Rosa National Park and are in a marine protected environment. They are also a solid 1 hour boat trip from our location at the Riu Guanacaste and are considered an Advanced Dive site due to the possibility of strong currents as well as possible surge at the surface. Descents quite often are done as a back roll entry and are done negatively buoyant to go as quickly through the surface surge as possible.

The Bat Islands are famous for their bull shark encounters. The bull sharks at the Bat Islands are not baited or fed. They are present only at the first dive site which is called Big Scare. Also frequently seen at this dive site are large Giant Pacific Mantas! These massive rays can measure up to 22 feet across from wing tip to wing tip and are often very inquisitive with divers.

The second dive site which is normally done at Bat Islands is Black Rock. This is a pinnacle type formation which drops from the surface nearly straight down to 100 feet. Here there have been several whale shark sightings, the biggest schools of fish you can imagine, lots of white tip reef sharks, nurse sharks, eagle rays, and if you’re lucky, it is a fairly regular spot to witness schooling mobular rays. Their schools can easily include 1000+ rays.


This is the best place to witness the Giant Pacific Mantas if they are in town. There are few dive sites such as The Cleaning Station, The Wall, and The Point where if mantas are around you may spend your whole diving being circled by these beautiful creatures. Also at the Catalinas are large groups of fish, white tip reef sharks, rays, and much more! The mantas are generally at these dive sites starting mid December until mid spring. However, sometimes they can arrive early and the word gets around!

Expected Weather

The weather in this area of Costa Rica is divided into two main seasons. The dry season which runs from roughly December through May, and the “green” (wet) season which runs from May through November. October will feature daily showers, usually in the late afternoon and early evening. There are also quite often large thunder and lightning storms which happen in the distance off of the mountains at Santa Rosa National Park. These are incredible to watch and may make an oceanview room upgrade a decent idea.

Payment Policy

A $300 deposit is due at sign up. The balance of your trip is due a minimum of 90 days prior to travel.

Not Included In The Trip Price

  • Dive crew gratuities (Recommended but optional)
  • Hotel staff gratuities (Recommended but optional)
  • Dive gear rental
  • Nitrox (Can be upgraded for $10 per tank)

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Trip Includes

  • 8 Days 7 Nights Accommodation at Riu Guanacaste
  • All Inclusive 24 Hour Dining, and Drinks
  • All Non-Motorized Watersports
  • Wifi Throughout the Resort
  • 5 Days 2 Tank Local Boat Diving With Rocket Frog Divers
  • 1 Day White Water Rafting Excursion
  • Return Private Airport Transfers
  • All Taxes and service charges included


  • Double Occupancy Diver $1449  Non-Diver $1049
  • Single Occupancy Diver $1875  Non-Diver $1475
  • Triple Occupancy Diver $1400  Non-Diver $1000
  • Standard Rooms. Room upgrades available upon request.
  • (Add up to 2 Children (2-12 non-divers for $250 each when staying in a room with 2 paying adults. Kids under 2 are free.)
  • Can add additional days up to 3 on either side for an additional fee.

The Riu Guanacaste

The Diving