Diving & Snorkeling
Cozumel is diving heaven!
Whether you are an expert diver or beginner, Cozumel is an underwater paradise you really must experience. Diving enthusiasts from all over the world travel to Cozumel for world class diving opportunities. Cozumel is a great area for new divers as well (full certification course are available on the island). Take advantage of the opportunity to experience the incredible wonders that lie just below the surface in Cozumel. More and more, divers, snorkelers and nondivers are choosing private villas and condos for their vacation experience. These vacation rental properties offer more privacy, spaciousness and comforts than standard hotel options. Villas and condos condos come in a variety of sizes and prices. Ask us for our personal recommendations!
Below are videos, divesite maps, dive shops and more!
Barracuda: North of town, lots of life and current!
Paso de Cedral: You'll spot eels, large groupers, grunts, porkfish, barracudas. In the caves you'll find schools of glassy sweepers. Current can be brisk. Depth is 40-60 ft.
Punta Tunich: You can fly with the current on this dive . . . and other times it will be calm as ever. You'll find groups of fish hanging out in the gullies. Watch for green morays (big ones!) and elegant scrawled filefish. Depth is 30-70 feet
Yucab: Without touching anything be on the lookout for those great Cozumel toadfish. If you hang upside down you may find these creatures hiding under rocks or coral. The bold striping pattern, whiskers and bright yellow eel-like tail make them a peculiar looking critter. They're mighty shy, so be sly. Other goodies are this dive are octopus, crab, triggerfish and trunk fish (aren't they cute!). You're at 40-60 feet on Yucab.
Tormentos: Don't be intimidated by the name of this site, you'll find plenty of interesting marine life, and the current isn't going to rip you around. Heard there are seahorses in one area of this dive . . . I haven't seen 'em yet. But I'll keep looking! 60-70 feet here.
Palancar Caves: Wow! Now we're into canyons and tunnels, drop-offs and usually mild currents. When you slip into the 60-90 foot range, don't forget to watch overhead. You'll sometimes find large eagle rays or turtles sailing above you. You can dive here time after time and each experience is a new one, with abundant sealife, interesting landscape and great, great blue.
Palancar Horseshoe: Dramatic wall teeming with coral. This dive takes it's name from it's distinctive shape. It's another incredible Cozumel dive that you can do over and over again. Depth here is 60-90 ft.
Palancar Gardens: An exotic undersea banquet of marine life, coral, pillars and a plush carpet of color. Enjoy this one at 40-70 ft.
Santa Rosa Wall: I love this one! The beckoning wall, the come hither tunnels, the clarity and the marine life. Off you go into the wild blue yonder at 60-80 ft. depth. We saw a hammerhead shark here once, in a shallow area at the end of the dive.
Cedral Wall: Impressive wall dive that starts at 45 feet; you'll sometimes spot turtles and eagle rays. When the current is slower, the French angels will often hover above you and nip at your bubbles. Aren't they grand! Cedral is 45-90 feet.
Punta Sur: At the southern end of the island, this dive features pinnacles and an area known as Devil's Throat which starts at 70 feet and continues to the exit at 120 feet. Swirling schools of fish add a touch of excitement.
Columbia: There's Columbia Deep and Columbia Shallow. Columbia Deep starts just after Devil's Throat with a dramatic drop-off. Watch for large groupers and turtles. Current is usually mild here, but it's a vast area, so you could do several dives to cover the entire area. Depth is 80-100 feet. We saw a seahorse once at about 80 feet. Columbia Shallow is only 20-40 feet deep, but it's an incredible area with lots of coral sealife. Great area for snorkeling, too . . . but you have to get there by boat.
Da plane: This is a popular shore dive, located near the international pier by the Casa del Mar/La Ceiba Hotels. The plane is scattered in this area, and provides housing for gobs of shrimp, eels, octopus, etc. We've done this dive in daylight hours and after dark. It's a great acclamation dive with little current in a shallow area (you're not going to get any deeper than 45 feet). There are some coral formations and varied fishlife. At night we've played with countless octopus (or is that octopi?) and eels, seen bunches of crabs, lobster, rays, stonefish, toad fish, horse eye jacks, puffer fish, squid, shrimp, sharp tail eel, etc. We've seen parrots in their cacoons (once there was even a baby inside the cacoon with mama!). We saw an interesting and unusual type shark one night and, oh yeah, half an eel.
Wreck Dive: An old U.S. Navy minesweeper was recently sunk in 25-80 feet of water off Cozumel's coast. The vessel waas acquired by the Mexican goverment in the 1960s and was renamed Felipe Xicotencatl C-53. After years of use, the ship was retired and is now home beneach the sea in Cozumel. Intended to provide yet another dive site to this area, the wreck will likely attract marine life and sprout living coral in coming years. Large holes in the 184-foot gunboat allows entrance into the hull. A guideline from the aft area was installed to lead divers through the wreck. For safety purposes, signs have been posted to indicate nearest exit. Fishlife will become more abundant as creatures discover this artificial reef of Cozuemel.
Lots of other dive sites, too; this is just a sampling. If you'd like to add your favorites, or comments or an interesting dive story E-mail us with subject: dive comments!
Snorkeling on the island:
There are many shops that offer snorkel trips with visits to two or three sites. Some offer the option of lunch or provide snacks or beverages. Check with the shops above for snorkeling options.
You can snorkel on your own along the shore in several areas, but be careful of the boat traffic. In town, you can snorkel near Jeannie's Waffle House; they have a man-made beach area with lounge chairs and tables. Cold drinks and food can be served along the ocean. Other areas include these areas south of town: Money Bar, Corona Beach and Chankanaab (entry fee). All offer great snorkeling, but it's best if you can go when there aren't many cruise ships in. You can also snorkel just north of the marina which is located before the Presidente Hotel. Snorkeling is also quite good near Villa Blanca and La Ceiba Hotels. Many oceanfront villas and condos have good snorkeling right along the shore as well.