Mexico has big animal diving like nowhere else, here is the chance to dive with sea lions, great white sharks, mantas and whale sharks.
Mexico sits between the Pacific Ocean, Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico and has a wide range of diving on all sides. Liveaboard diving in Mexico is mostly around the Pacific Ocean, at Guadalupe and Socorro islands and The Sea of Cortez. Guadalupe and Socorro are only accessible by diving cruise due to being half a day’s sail from land. Some of The Sea of Cortez can be dived from shore but the best option is a diving liveaboard. Guadalupe trips are around 4-5 days, Socorro dive cruises are between 8 and 10 days and in The Sea of Cortez they are around 7-10 days.
The Solmar V crew have a wealth of experience having spent over 20 years diving in the waters of Mexico, divers will learn a lot from them on their trip. The Nautilus Belle Amie and Nautilus Explorer have more of a modern touch with excellent facilities. The cabins on the Nautilus Belle Amie are so spacious and well put together they could easily be mistaken for hotel rooms.
Liveaboard diving in Mexico is all about big marine life, although The Sea of Cortez does have a lot of interesting smaller life too. Diving in Guadalupe is all cage diving due to the main attraction being great white sharks. It is possible to see several great whites in a single cage dive and even huge females which can be up to 18 ft. (5.5 m) long.
Mantas are one of the main reasons to dive in Socorro, they can be seen in significant numbers passing by on ocean currents. Sharks are plentiful too divers can spot hammerheads, tiger sharks and whale sharks as well as curious oceanic whitetips. There are hardly any corals or flora due to the temperature not that you could look away from the sharks, dolphins and even humpback whales anyway.
The Sea of Cortez has no shortage of big life either, in addition to the friendly sea lions there are mantas and shoals of mobula rays. Hammerheads and whale sharks are also found in this area as well as whales and dolphins. There are a number of whale species in The Sea of Cortez including orca, humpbacks, pilot and sperm whales.
BEST TIME TO GO
January to December
The best time to dive in Mexico depends on which liveaboard diving destination you want to visit.
The Sea of Cortez is open for liveaboard diving from July to October, with September to November being the whale shark season. In Guadalupe the season is July to November, when the great whites gather around the island to feed on elephant seals. Socorro is at its best between November and May with whale shark season around November and December. It is worth noting that the water temperature makes a short drop to 70° F (21° C) in February and March.
Liveaboards in The Sea of Cortez normally depart from Puerto Penasco which is around a 4-hour drive from Sky Harbour airport in Phoenix. Socorro liveaboards depart from Cabo San Lucas which can be reached most easily from San Jose Cabo Airport, which is a thirty-minute drive away. Guadalupe is best reached by flying to San Diego or Tijuana with an hour and a half drive to Ensenada town where the liveaboards depart from. Most diving liveaboards offer transfer from the airport, some at an additional charge.