Sunk during a hurricane in 1959, today, the top of the wreck is just 4 feet (1 meter) below the surface, making it a perfect wreck for beginners.
Outside Manzanillo Bay, Pena Blanca is an open ocean rock black coral beds below. In the right season, this rock is visited by whales and manta rays.
At Elephant Rock, two swim-through, underwater arches are flanked by shallow coral reefs. This site occasionally hosts sea turtles and whale sharks.
November to May is considered the best time to dive offshore sites in Central Mexico, because the sea conditions in the Pacific are calmest during these months. The weather is good too; generally it’s sunny with an occasional rain shower.
Manta rays can be seen throughout the year, but during the winter months, divers also have the chance of spotting the rare whale shark or even a migratory whale.
At this time, however, visibility is negatively impacted is by the very plankton blooms that attract the mantas and whale sharks. These are most common around the full moon.
If you love diving with pelagic species, book your holiday between November and May.
Elsewhere in Mexico, November to May is considered high season for general tourism, causing an increase in the price of flights and accommodation.
June to October is the offseason for liveaboards and general tourism in the area. However, at this time, the water warms significantly, reaching 84°F (26°C) in August and September. For many divers, especially beginners who will find the open ocean sites difficult to reach, the summer months are an ideal time to dive.
In addition, visibility is at its peak from June to October. It’s also low season for tourism throughout Mexico, meaning you should find excellent deals on accommodation, airfare and excursions. However, you will have to battle the hot and humid summer weather while topside.
If you’re an advanced diver who would prefer to look elsewhere, try Caribbean diving for a change. The season on the east side of Mexico is year-round.
Manzanillo is home to an aquarium of fish and after a day diving in the Bay, you’ll be busy trying to remember everything you’ve seen. Lobsters, octopus, seahorses and a large number of huge pufferfish reside at the San Luciano Wreck. Many of the reefs in the area host schools of yellowtail surgeonfish, zebra and jewel moray eels, needlefish, king angels, grouper, hogfish, triggerfish, Cortez angelfish, stingrays, striped grunts, sea turtles and hundreds of other colorful fish. At Elephant Rock and Pena Blanca, the open ocean site, divers occasionally see manta rays, whale sharks, sailfish and even whales on a lucky day.
For better readability of the table, pass into the landscape mode.