A luxurious live aboard yacht with a magnificent attention to detail and exceptional cruising abilities
Jardines Avalon II is a 136' long and 25' wide steel yacht, it was built and maintained to SOLAS shipping standards. It is diesel-powered, cruise at 10 knots and have 110-volt power onboard.
It features a roomy, air conditioned salon and dining area, sun deck complete with a hot tub (Jacuzzi), lounge and deck chairs, stereo, shaded wet bar and grill, and a complete photo center with a digital video and still photo editing computer.
Jardines Avalon II's beverages selection includes fruit juices, soft drinks, iced water, iced tea, coffee, and a full bar of beer, wine and spirits.
This diving vessel has everything a live aboard is expected to have, and more! Indeed, the vessel is quite spacious and offers large communal areas. The big salon is located on the main deck and is a cozy space where everyone can gather and enjoy the complete TV/media system. Also, if you walk upstairs to get to the upper deck, that’s where you’ll find the galley along with a restaurant-like dining room.
Furthermore, step outside on that same upper deck and you’ll find just as much space where you can hang out. Plus, that’s where the jacuzzi tub is located. Indeed, those who like to stay in the shade will be happy as the sundecks are partly shaded. Also, the sunbathers are served with a huge area fitted with sun loungers so they can relax, work on their tan and enjoy the view of beautiful Cuba.
The boat features a sizable lower prep deck with plenty of space to store your equipment and get ready for the day of diving. The maneuverability on this boat is incredible and you will find there is no lack of space on board.
Arrival: The diving weeks run Saturday to Saturday. We suggest arriving into Cayo Coco, Santa Clara or Camaguey airports. Transfers from these airports are $60 per person one way to Jucaro port. If arriving into these airports, the flight must arrive no later than 12:00pm to ensure same day arrival to the port and navigation to Jardines de la Reina. If clients prefer to arrive and depart in Havana, they must arrive in the city on Friday, overnight, then take the collective land transfer to Jucaro port ($120pp one way — 6 hours). This transfer leaves Havana in the morning and ensures that clients will arriving at the port in time to board and navigate on Saturday. Guests MAY NOT arrive into Havana on Saturday, it must be at least the day before. Diving occurs Sunday thru Friday and will be up to 4 dives/day (including night dives). While on the boat, all meals and drinks are included.
Departure: The boat will navigate to Jucaro port on Friday afternoon and will overnight in port. Clients will depart between 5 and 9am on Saturday morning, depending on the group transfer needs. Flights from Cayo Coco, Santa Clara or Camaguey airports can be booked after 11am and flights out of Havana can be booked after 8:30pm on Saturday or the clients may overnight and fly home on Sunday from Havana.
*Any flights outside of these guideline times will be subject to private transfer fees*
US Citizens: Our cruises fall under the humanitarian and environmental projects general license category.
Marine biologists working with Avalon will be teaching and collaborating with the guests about marine conservation and the Gardens of the Queen's unique ecosystem. The guests will be immersed in a participatory environmental project throughout their diving week that integrates perfectly into the diving schedule while building on a long term sustainable conservation initiative through active engagement from divers, Cuban marine biologists and guides. All travelers will be granted a certificate of participation and completion of this humanitarian and environmental project along with a full itinerary of activities that will certify them as legal under US and Cuban regulations for their diving week.
For more information visit: www.BlueSanctuary.Org
Diving schedule is usually at the discretion of the customers following the instructor’s suggestions with 3 to 4 dives daily. The day begins with a wakeup call at 7:00 am, coffee/tea ready, breakfast at 7:15 am. Our diving instructors are ready to go diving from 8:00 am. Fast diving boats are used to reach diving spots having the opportunity to explore different sites each day and enjoy the view of mangrove channels, virgin beaches, birds and other exuberant fauna during the trips. There is no chance for loneliness; dive guides and crew are available every single minute.
Our group guarantees all the equipment required to ensure safety (First Aid kits with O2 on every boat, excellent communications with mother boats and mainland, life jackets, AED etc.). Sunday morning, check-in dive to get acquainted and make sure all equipment is in good shape. During the briefings, our experienced instructors will explain every detail of the dive, from what will be seen in a particular spot to the correct behavior while diving with sharks or highlights of the area and special characteristics of the marine life present. After the first dive, surface interval in one of the beautiful beaches. Second dive and, at midday, boats will return for lunch.
Together with the instructor, arrange time for afternoon dives or for excursions through the lagoon and mangrove channels. Coming back to the live aboard, it is time to drink a frozen “mojito”, enjoy the afternoon pizza and talk about the dives. Around 8:00 pm, dinner is served and, like a family, everyone gets together around the table. Night dives available.
The staff will be in contact every minute to assist and receive special requests or suggestions. Evening time next to the bar, to watch photos and videos while breathing the sea atmosphere, it’s time to plan with the instructors what will happen next day.
On Friday there are 2 dives in the morning then navigation back to Jucaro port where the group will overnight on board the mother yacht and disembark for transfer home on Saturday morning.
Tipping is widespread in Cuba. Many Cuban workers rely on tips to supplement their basic income and they all work really hard. Tips help them get a better lifestyle. So if you receive good service, it is very good etiquette to tip accordingly.
Recommended $350-450 USD per person. This will be given to the captain or cruise director to be dispersed among the entire staff.
We would like to remind you that we do not accept credit cards on board the boats. You will need cash for any purchases and gratuities. You can easily exchange money at the airport or at any bank for CUC (Cuban Convertible Pesos). The best currency to bring on your trip to Cuba is Euros to get a direct exchange to CUC if you plan to spend any extra time in Cuba. Otherwise, USD is the preferred currency for tips in Cuba.
All port fees and conservation fees will be included on your invoice and must be pre-paid. They cannot be paid on board the boat.
Any rentals must be arranged and paid for in advance. They will be included on your invoice.
Any transfers outside of the recommended guidelines and suggestions will be subject to private transfer fees beyond the standard costsfor transfers which will also be included on your invoice.
*If you have any questions about transfers and logistics, please do not hesitate to contact your Avalon travel representative*
5 Cummins KTA total 3500 Hp
3 Genset John Deere
2 SK WaterMaker
4 Nuvair dive compressors 2 Air / 2 Nitrox
Next generation Northern Lights Chiller AC individually controlled
Large AC lounge
Large open-air areas
Top open air bar with Hot Tub
Huge dive deck and camera tables
12 people crew
Audio & video entertainment
TV & Aircon in cabins
Warm Water Showers
220v in bar and restaurant
USB in bar, restaurant, rooms
Food & Drinks
Selection of wines
Snacks All Day
Tenders for diving
Boat navigation, communication and safety features
Fire Alarm & Fire Extinguishers
First Aid Kits
Bilge pump alarm
Engine room CCTV
Crew trained in first aid
Number of cabins
12 (10 cabins + 2 suites with balcony - most cabins, except 2, have twin beds convertible into a queen bed)