Located 60 miles south of Cuba is the Jardines De La Reina (Gardens of the Queen) National Park. Encompassing a chain of 250 pristine coral and mangrove islands it’s widely considered to offer the healthiest reefs found anywhere in the Caribbean alongside abundant populations of shark species.
The vibrant and diverse marine ecosystem here can be characterized by fields of gorgonian sea fans, kilometer-long stretches of the Caribbean’s healthiest elkhorn coral structures that divide the inner and outer reefs, mangroves, elaborate patch reefs, channels, and extensive sea-grass beds, all of which play host to a diverse range of marine life from large pelagics to small colorful reef fish and critters. Marine life highlights include schooling snappers & grunts, various angelfish, reef squid, octopus, several species of reef & pelagic sharks, American saltwater crocodiles, and many different types of rays.
Snorkeling in Cuba by liveaboard is an outstanding opportunity to experience the country at its best.
This group charter (24 snorkelers) is on board the ‘Jardine Aggressor II Liveaboard’ offering 6 days of adventure where each day will offer something different below the surface. We will be traveling safari style to remote reefs to snorkel the very best sites that Cuba has to offer, as well as ensuring there is enough time topside to relax and enjoy our comfortable liveaboard yacht.
During the week, Cuban specialists will host nightly discussions and presentations on the marine environment, conservation, and the importance of this magnificent ecosystem. Interactive exchanges will discuss how Cuba has maintained one of the healthiest marine ecosystems in the Caribbean.
Special Note: Sharks & Crocs
One of the most unique things about this tour is that we have the opportunity to swim with pelagic sharks like silky sharks as well as various reef shark species like Caribbean reef sharks and nurse sharks, but we are also able to get in and swim alongside American saltwater crocodiles. Each of these unique encounters is in a controlled environment and under the direct supervision of professionals who’ve spent years with these individual animals.
Marine Life Guide
Day 1 - Arrive in Cuba
Day 2-7 - Snorkeling in the Jardines de la Reina
Each morning we will wake up to a fully prepared breakfast which will feature a buffet as well well as freshly prepared dishes as you please.
After breakfast, we will have a briefing for that morning’s snorkeling sessions, typically two one-hour sessions. We’ll board the two large tenders and make our way to the first site. Snorkel sites are on average, 10-20 minutes away from the main vessel. After the first snorkel, we’ll load back into the tenders for some snacks and drinks and a bit of a break. We’ll move the boat to a new site and then jump back in for another hour or so of snorkeling. Following that, we’ll head back to the main boat where we’ll be wrapped in fresh hot towels and then later served a bountiful hot lunch in the main restaurant.
After an afternoon siesta or a bit of sunbathing, we’ll enjoy another briefing in the saloon about the afternoon’s snorkeling sessions before jumping back in the large tenders which will take us to the afternoon’s snorkeling sites. Like the morning sessions, we’ll spend about an hour at each site
- Please Note: Sites are typically close to the main boat, so if you don’t want to go out for two sessions in the morning or afternoon you can opt to be dropped at the main vessel or picked up before or after snorkeling sessions.
- With proper notice, the chef should be able to accommodate just about all dietary requirements.
Day 8 -Disembark and Fly Home
The Jardine Aggressor II is a 135ft world-class liveaboard yacht complete with 12 cabins which come equipped with private bathrooms, showers and air conditioning. The onboard menu features chef- prepared international cuisine catering for all dietary requirements (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free etc), as well as offering soft drinks, beer, cocktails, and wine complimentary. All guests are welcome to bring a bottle of their favorite liquor if they choose to.
As well as a spacious lounge, the ship has a large sun deck, bar, grill and hot tub with internet service available through the satellite system. At night presentations will be hosted in the lounge, as well as the opportunity for night snorkeling, movies and games. A small library of books for exchange is also maintained onboard.
The ship comes complete with a crew of 12 on hand to ensure comfort and satisfaction for all guests. Most of our snorkel excursions are made from the deck at the rear of the yacht and equipped tender for easy pickups from snorkel sites when needed. The tour will also be fully escorted and hosted by a member of our team.
Mastercard and Visa are both accepted onboard.
On this page you will find our Tour Dates & Pricing (see below contact form), a Booking Form and Details of Payment schedule including deposit and final balance. If you have any further questions please complete the form and we will reply within 24hrs.
Can Americans Enter Cuba?
Yes, Americans can enter Cuba, and while it may seem a bit convoluted and confusing at first if you’re searching online, it’s actually quite easy. The Jardines Aggressor II has partnered with the Oceans For Youth Foundation who have a specific license to operate “People-to-People Group” interactions. There are twelve categories by which Americans can enter Cuba, and groups such as ours are able to enter via the “People-to-People Group” category. In order fall within the scope of this category, Oceans for Youth and the JAII have put together a fantastic program that involves not only snorkeling, but nightly lectures by very accomplished Cuban marine biologists who host daily lectures about the successful conservation efforts and natural history of the Jardines de la Reina.
The way it works is, once you make your booking, you’ll be given a link to fill out a guest information form with Aggressor. After you’ve input your information you’ll be given a PDF to download, this is your unique OFAC letter which is the official document saying that you are coming to Cuba to participate in a “People-to-People Group” tour. Other than that, all you need to do is get a Cuban Visa which you can either purchased online or at the Miami airport right next to the check in counter, and then you are good to go!
Please note you are only allowed to arrive in Cuba on the day of the Liveaboard start date and you must leave on the final day. The permit does not allow extensions.
Make an Enquiry or Book this Tour
Tour Dates 2024
17 – 24 February 2024
Tour Dates 2025
15 – 22 February 2025
22 Feburary – 1 March 2025
$4,200 per person (Twin/Double Share)
$4,790 per person (Balcony Suite)
Deposit – 40% of the tour price
Final Balance – Due 100 days to departure
- Return airport transfers
- 7 nights’ accommodation and full board (all meals)
- Complimentary beer, wine, and soft drinks onboard the Jardine Aggressor II
- Services of snorkel guide and boat skiff for multiple snorkeling excursions each day
- Nightly presentations discussing marine environment and conservation and the importance of the magnificent ecosystem, run by Cuban specialists
- International/Domestic flights
- Snorkel equipment
- Travel Insurance
- Cuba Visa
- Port Fee $240 USD
- Fuel charge $150 USD
- Conservation Fee $120
*Note: Fees and surcharges are subject to change