Schooling scalloped hammerhead sharks are a highlight at Malpelo Island especially at the La Nevara dive site. Sometimes seen in schools of about 200 sharks, they can also be joined with even larger schools of silky sharks. They come to feed and to visit cleaning stations so expect to see plenty of butterflyfish as well. These cleaning stations and the nutrient rich waters also attract gentle giants like oceanic manta rays and whale sharks. Whale shark sightings are frequent towards the north of Malpelo Island.
At most dive sites, find your visibility limited not necessarily by plankton in the water, but clouds of bigeye trevally, red snapper, pacific creolefish, juvenile barracuda and grunts. Pelagic hunters like yellowfin tuna, Galapagos sharks, and amberjacks eagerly patrol these enormous schools for meals.
At deeper depths of 133ft (40m) you may chance upon the very rare smalltooth sand tiger shark at the Bajo del Monstruo dive site or perhaps the very strange red-lipped batfish. Dive guides will often be on the lookout for bait balls happening in the open sea which can result in a very exciting dive.
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Fly to Gerardo Tobar López Airport in Buenaventura, Colombia or alternatively, fly to Cali (Airport Code CLO) and aim to arrive at least one day before your trip starts. Transfers from Cali to Buenaventura as well as back to Cali may be included in your hotel rates. Cali is connected internationally with Miami (American Airlines & AVIANCA), New York JFK, Madrid (both AVIANCA) and Panama-Tocumen (Copa Airlines).
There are also direct flights to Cali from Quito, Guayaquil and Lima. It is also possible to fly to Cali via Bogota which is connected to various cities in North America (Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Fort Lauderdale, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Newark, New York JFK, Orlando, Toronto, Washington) and Europe (Amsterdam, Barcelona, Frankfurt, Istanbul, London, Madrid, Munich, Paris).