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A resort destination, Cabo San Lucas lies at Land’s End where the Sea of Cortez meets the Pacific Ocean, creating great reef, pinnacle and wall dives.

Highlights

Sand Falls of Land’s End

One of Cabo San Lucas’ premiere dive sites, Land’s End features unique sand falls off the cliffs where the Sea of Cortez meets the Pacific Ocean.

Sea Lions of San Lucas Bay

Like many of the locations in Baja California Sur, Cabo San Lucas offers ample opportunity to watch playful sea lions dance beneath the waves.

Schooling Rays of Santa Maria

To the east of Cabo San Lucas, Santa Maria is a shallow bay with healthy corals. Schooling rays pass through and you might spot a Banded Guitarfish.

Hammerheads at Gordo Banks

This hit-or-miss dive features a seamount with a submerged plateau where you’ll find scalloped hammerheads, groupers, mackerels and a variety of rays.

Diving in Cabo San Lucas

Quick facts

Famous first as a resort destination and second as a scuba destination, diving in Cabo San Lucas is easy enough for a true beginner yet offers challenges for even the most expert diver. Beginners will enjoy the protected rocky reefs of San Lucas Bay. Intermediate and advanced divers can head outwards toward the dramatic walls just offshore. These drop to unimaginable depths. Finally, current-heavy submerged pinnacles and deep wrecks located at the join between the Sea of Cortez and the Pacific Ocean are reserved for the most advanced divers.

Most diving in Cabo San Lucas takes place with the aid of small speed boats. However, this tourist destination is a great shore diving location as well. Most of the bay can be accessed from land.

Keep in mind that a 16% tax is levied on all dive operations in Mexico. Reef hooks are not permitted in nationally protected areas.

When to go

For pelagic species, the best time to dive around Cabo San Lucas is December to May. June to November is favored with the best underwater conditions.

June to November

August to November is the season for liveaboard diving in the Sea of Cortez, and many depart from Cabo San Lucas. While the Pacific is cold, the Sea of Cortez is at its warmest. The water is approximately 80°F (27°C).

The weather at this time transitions from hot and humid to cooler with a bit of rain. However, the visibility is the best during the summer and fall months.

On the other hand, June to October is not as busy as the winter months in terms of tourism. You should be able to snag some good deals if you book far enough in advance. Be aware, these months represent the highest risk of typhoons. It’s a good idea to take out trip insurance if you plan to visit Mexico in the fall.

Interested in the best conditions for diving in Cabo San Lucas? Book your Mexican diving holiday between June and October.

December to March

From December to May, divers can expect cooler temperatures in the Sea of Cortez. However uncomfortable it might be for humans, it’s balmy for pelagic species. If you are a pelagic fan, this is the best time to dive near Cabo San Lucas and also the best time for hammerheads at Gordo Banks.

In addition, this is the best time to spot Humpback Whales, Grey Whales and mobulas in the area. You’ll also find increased sea lion activity. Lucky divers might spot Bullseye Rays, Banded Guitarfish and Octopuses who climb from the depths due to the cold.

The topside weather is generally sunny with the occasional rain shower. Because Mexico is significantly less hot than during the summer months, December to May is also considered the best time to vacation here. Therefore, December to March is high season for general tourism, causing an increase in accommodation rates throughout the country.

Rain and temperature

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Water temperature

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Where to dive

Beginners will want to stick to San Lucas Bay and the Corridor, including Santa Maria. Advanced divers and pelagic lovers should check out Gordo Banks.

    Snorkeling in Cabo San Lucas

    Snorkeling tours are available everywhere in Cabo San Lucas. Most of these day trips ferry holidaymakers to Santa Maria, Playa Chileno or Hilton Cove where rocky sea beds and a decent variety of fish await. For the very best snorkeling look for a tour to take you to Cabo Pulmo National Park where fewer boats and a higher diversity of marine life awaits.
    Within San Lucas Bay, you’ll find the most famous site in Cabo San Lucas, namely Sand Falls at Pelican Rock/Lands End. At depth, sand cascades down a series of cliffs, creating the famous sand falls. To the west, the Corridor is home to Santa Maria, Chileno Bay and Palmilla Shore. Rocky reef and unique rock formations with lots of critters make up the landscape of these dive sites. Further from shore, Gordo Banks and The Wreck are neighboring sites for advanced divers. Gordo Banks, in particular, is a current-heavy underwater plateau which frequently hosts scalloped hammerheads, groupers, mackerels and a variety of rays. As a final note, it’s also possible to dive Cabo Pulmo National Park while staying in Cabo San Lucas.

    What to see

    While not home to the variety of marine life found elsewhere in the Sea of Cortez, Cabo San Lucas will keep you busy filling in your log books after a long day of diving. The largest species, found primarily near Gordo Banks and The Wreck, are hammerhead sharks, a variety of rays, turtles, tuna and moray eels.

    In the rocky bottom of Santa Maria and its neighboring sites, you might find lobsters, Calico Lizardfish, Spotted Boxfish, Cortez Rays and Loosetooth Parrotfish. Humpback and Grey whales are sometimes seen en route to these sites.

    Finally, nudibranchs, tropical fish and playful sea lions are a common sight in San Lucas Bay.

    Calendar

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    Location

    Cabo San Lucas is a major Mexican city located at the far southern tip of Baja California. Because of its dry, sunny climate and pristine beaches, Cabo, as it is known in North American English, has been ranked as one of the top five tourist destinations in Mexico.

    Two hundred years ago, the area was a small fishing village. Big tuna industry moved in and visitors spread the word about this gorgeous city. In recent years, Cabo San Lucas has expanded to reach its neighbor to the east, Cabo Jose del Cabo. Together these cities form “Los Cabos.”

    Other attractions

    As a major tourist destination, there is much to do in Cabo San Lucas. Popular sightseeing attractions include the Arch of Poseidon at Land’s End, the Cultural Center, the Cabo San Lucas Glass Factory and the Church of San Lucas. Fishing trips, whale watching cruises and music-filled catamaran journeys are fantastic ways to get onto the water. ATV and buggy rides are a unique way to experience the dramatic desert landscape, but don’t forget to schedule some time for relaxing on the pristine beaches are shopping in the downtown district. You’re sure to feel relaxed and recharged after your Cabo San Lucas holiday.

    Getting there

    Los Cabos International Airport welcomes flights from across North and South America. Visitors from other continents will need to catch a connecting flight in Mexico City. The airport is 30-45 minutes from Cabo San Lucas. Buses and taxis are available to shuttle guests between the airport and city. The only other way to reach Cabo San Lucas is over land from elsewhere in Baja California.

    UTC-07:00

    Time zone

    MXN

    Currency

    +52

    Calling code

    127 V

    Electric volt

    A, 

    B

    Plug type

    SJD

    Main airport
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