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Get your PADI scuba certification. If you’ve always wanted to learn how to scuba dive, discover new adventures and see the wondrous world beneath the waves, this is where it starts. With Bristol based pool dives and a variety of open water dive locations to choose from, take your PADI course with us and open up the world below the sea!

The PADI Open Water Diver course is the world’s most popular scuba course, and has introduced millions of people to the adventurous diving lifestyle.


There are many great places to learn to dive around the world, but once qualified you need people to go diving with and who share your new passion. When learning to dive with Hidden Depths Scuba School you get access to our supportive, local dive club full of active divers. As a member of our club you can enjoy access to great local dive trips, reduced rates on kit hire and regular social events.


“Absolutely chuffed with how this weekend has gone, I’m filled with absolute gratitude towards you and Robin for sharing your knowledge with me and giving me such first-class tuition. Thank you so much!” 


Open Water & Dry Suit Diver Student


The PADI Open Water Diver course consists of three main phases:

  • Knowledge Development (home study or in our classroom ) to understand basic principles of scuba diving
  • Confined Water Dives to learn basic scuba skills
  • Open Water Dives to review your skills and explore the underwater world and build your experience

If you’ve tried diving through a Discover Scuba Diving experience the skills you learned may be credited towards a portion of the full PADI Open Water Diver course certification.


To enroll in the PADI Open Diver course or Junior Open Water Diver course, you must

  • Be 10 years or older
  • Be able to swim 200m and tread water for 10 minutes


The fun part about this course is just about all of it because learning to dive is incredible! You breathe underwater for the first time (something you’ll never forget) and learn what you need to know to become a certified diver.

During the course, you’ll make at least five pool dives and four open water dives, all under the supervision of your PADI Instructor. Your pool dives can be scheduled across a five week period at either of our weekly pool sessions, or arranged as a whole day intensive course if this suits your schedule better.

Extra pool time is available for practice until both you and your instructor feel you’re ready to take the next step into open water. The open water dives are then taken at a shore diving site on the coast, or at local inland dive locations, complete with all the facilities you need when learning to dive.

In the PADI Open Water Diver course you will learn to assemble, use, disassemble and care for basic scuba gear, including a dive computer, and standard accessories such as marker buoys and line. Your course will focus on training you to dive comfortably and confidently, and be able to deal with any emergency that may arise underwater.

We train with small groups of students, often no more than three students per instructor and Divemaster team. This allows you all the time you need to take in the skills and allows time for skill practice in the pool before we head out to open water and complete your course.

The Learning Materials you will use

PADI’s Open Water Diver course materials cover everything you need to know about basic scuba diving skills, terminology and safety procedures. For each concept you’ll read a description and watch a video demonstration. Then you’ll jump in the pool to practice these skills with your instructor.

You have a variety of options when it comes to selecting the best course materials for you, from the traditional paper manual and DVD to the brand new interactive Open Water Diver Touch programme designed for iPad and Android tablet users. The Open Water Touch is a brilliant app-based programme which integrates the course manual and DVD into one seamless programme, with interactive quizzes as you progress. You need an internet connection to download the App and programme, but after you can work on the materials at any time without connecting to the internet. When you sign up for the course you can choose the best course materials to suit your learning style and preference.

Later, as a certified diver, use the course materials as a reference guide for future diving adventures and to review what you learned.

Referral Program

The PADI Open Water Referral Course allows you to complete all the pool and theory elements here in the UK before completing your course aboard. Ideal for the adventurous holiday maker and perfect for that once in a lifetime holiday or honeymoon.

Upon completion of the pool and theory elements of the course you will receive documentation to take to your resort. You have 12 months from the last date on your referral document to complete the open water dives and certification.

For further information on the referral process please contact Hidden Depths Scuba School.

Hidden Depths Scuba School run two weekly pool dives around Bristol, primarily for scuba training, but also open to club members

Want to Join The dive Club?

How to join

Our dive club membership runs annually and is renewed every January.

To sign up for the dive club all you need to do is submit a Club Membership form along with your club membership fee of £45.

Updates are sent out through email, and you will have access to our members-only Facebook group which is ideal for arranging dives with other club members.