You should definitely go dive in Cozumel if you are on a Diving trip in Mexico. Indeed, this island is totally dedicated to scuba diving, there are many dive shops in Cozumel and we understand why. Here is more information about this amazing island. The island is located just opposite to Playa del Carmen and very close to the famous Cenotes of Mexico. The well-known commander Cousteau has designated the island as the best diving destination in the Caribbean. Cozumel is nearly 56 km long and nearly 14 km wide and is the largest island in Mexico. It is separated from the mainland and the Yucatan Peninsula by a small channel of only 19 kilometers.
All diving levels will be delighted in Cozumel and the island is perfect to pass the open water diver in Mexico. You will surely dive on some of the most beautiful diving sites in the world. In addition, from Cozumel you can dive into the Cenotes of Mexico and you will have the opportunity to dive with whale sharks from June to September. Finally, although the island lives to the rhythm of scuba diving, many small local restaurants and bars full of charms await you in the village of San Miguel.
When to go diving in Cozumel?
Cozumel has a tropical climate. First, be aware that you can dive all year round in Cozumel. The dry season is relatively short and extends from February to March, while the rainy season is particularly long and the months of September and October are the most humid. However, temperatures remain relatively stable throughout the year with nearly 23 degrees in December and 33 degrees in August. The dive conditions are ideal from July to November.
Visibility: Good visibility from July to November, 25 to 35 meters. Average visibility for the rest of the year.
Marine currents: Most of the dive sites in Cozumel are drift dives but the currents are generally quite weak. Some diving sites in Cozumel have strong currents.
Required level: Cozumel is accessible to all diving levels. The island is also perfect to start scuba diving.
The temperature of the water is generally 26°C.
What to see while diving and snorkeling?
The vast majority of the diving sites in Cozumel are drift dives on shoal or drop-off. They are located on a very large 45-kilometer barrier reef. Among the diving sites of Cozumel, you can discover the beautiful rock formations and caves of Colombia Reef, the great falls of Santa Rosa or the most lively site of the island, Paso del Cedral. The fauna is very rich and varied in Cozumel. You can dive with barracudas, turtles, morays, eagle rays, angelfish, grouper and many other fish from the Caribbean. Moreover, Cozumel is known for whale shark diving.
Dive with whale sharks
In Cozumel, as in Playa del Carmen or Islas Mujeres, it is possible to dive with whale sharks. However, the regulations to protect these magnificent animals are multiplying and the diving shops of Cozumel sometimes prefer to offer snorkeling trips with whale sharks. The whale shark diving season in Mexico extends from June to September.
Diving in the Cenotes of Mexico
The wonderful Cenotes of Mexico, in the Yucatan Peninsula are particularly known for their translucent water. Many diving centers in Cozumel but also and especially the ones of playa del caren offers excursions to discover these wonderful cave dives. The translucent waters and the mystical character of these cenotes create an amazing atmosphere that goes far beyond diving.
Cozumel best dive sites
Diving on Cozumel’s reefs
It is actually a very large underwater park that extends for nearly thirty kilometers along the coast. These reefs accommodate about forty dive sites. Here are the main ones.
- – Barracuda Reef: This famous dive site is located on the northern part of Cozumel. The currents can be violent and the site is more suitable for experienced divers or for the ones that would like to pass their advanced open water in Cozumel. You can dive on this beautiful falling with eagle rays, nurse sharks, turtles, leopard rays or barracudas.
- – Las Palmas: This beautiful dive site is very easy and particularly suitable if you want to pass your open water diver level in Cozumel. The dive site is also a great place for a snorkeling trip in Cozumel.
- – The C53 wreck: This is one of the few scuba diving wreck of Mexico. The ship was voluntarily sunk by the Mexican Navy in 2000 to make an artificial reef. In nearly 20 years, this ship has been colonized by a multitude of fish and moray eels.
- – Punta Tunich: This is an easy drift dive in Cozumel. The dive site is particularly shallow and there are many colorful coral and sponges. There are snappers, turtles, common fish from the Caribbean and sometimes even nurse sharks.
- – Santa Rosa Wall: This is one of the best scuba diving sites in Cozumel. This large drop-off is lined with numerous small caves inhabited by fish and crustaceans. The site is however very crowded and you will meet a lot of divers underwater.
- – Paso del Cedral: This magnificent reef is particularly known for lovers of underwater photography. There are wonderful colored corals and a very large fauna.
The Palencar reef
Probably the reef with the best diving sites of Cozumel. The beautiful palencar reef is located to the south of the island and offers some of the most beautiful dives in the Caribbean.
- – Palencar Garden: Very good dive site for underwater photography in Cozumel. The diving spot allows you to discover drop-offs as well as sandy bottoms filled with orange and purple corals formations. There are also turtles.
- – Palencar Horshoes: Perfect for underwater flora lovers, this dive site is simply extraordinary, thanks in particular to the magnificent canyons of corals inhabited by a rich and colorful fauna.
- – Palencar Bricks: Probably one of the best deep dives in Cozumel, Palencar Bricks proposes to visit magnificent coral formations deposited on a sand field. The visibility is particularly good and there are sharks, turtles, eagle rays and common fish in the Caribbean.
The famous reefs of Colombia were made famous after the expedition of Commander Cousteau and his ship, the Calypso in 1954. These reefs are located in the extreme south of the island and shelters magnificent diving sites which architecture is often bluffing. Apart from Colombia shallow, the dive sites of Colombia Reef are usually more suited for experienced divers.
- – Colombia: This site has a very dense fauna and is inhabited by many turtles. It evolves amidst magnificent coral formation. You can dive with eagle rays and often with octopuses. Diving is however reserved for experienced divers or divers wanting to pass their advanced open water in Cozumel.
- – Colombia Deep: Superb drift diving, Colombia Deep offers experienced divers the opportunity to discover corals in very large form, inhabited by magnificent turtles, eagle rays, groupers and angel fishes.