Over the last few years we have seen the number of British travellers to Mexico increase significantly. If you are interested in planning your next holiday to Mexico, or you already have, you may want to book your holiday activities before you get there. In Mexico, there are an unlimited number of activities that you may find exciting. One of the more popular of those activities is scuba diving.
Obviously you cannot just go scuba diving in Mexico as like everywhere else a valid dive license is required. The choices of where to dive while in Mexico are many, and deciding which place best suites your interests may take a little research. Even if you are not an experienced diver, several of the resorts that offer diving also offer PADI dive courses for the beginner or novice diver.
Today, Scuba diving has become big business with most seaside resorts and beach properties offering the activity to their guests. Mexico presents the diver with a diverse array of dive locations from colourful reefs to magnificent coral islands. Around Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, the twin centres of Cozumel and Playa del Carmen are both famous for their excellent dive locations and both welcome you with typical Latin American warmth, traditional Mexican food and incredible Mayan heritage.
The beautiful pocket island of Cozumel lies atop an ancient coral reef system and promises translucent waters and inviting beaches. Across on the mainland in Playa del Carmen dive operators are plentiful and you can also arrange trips to the great Mayan ruins or hikes in the rainforests, as can day trips to Cozumel – or vice versa.
Mexico is located in the northern region of the South American continent between the Gulf of Mexico on the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west. It is bordered by the United States on the north and by Guatemala and Belize to the south. The Yucatan Peninsula provides the best diving destinations, where you can enjoy the white-sand beach resorts and the clear blue waters of the Caribbean Sea, where you can scuba dive along the world’s second largest coral reef. You can also swim in fresh water pools in submerged caverns, known as cenotes.
Staying at Playa del Carmen provides access for diving the Cenotes. These underwater caves with amazing natural light changes are suitable for divers of all levels. Cozumel offers spectacular drift diving through coral gardens, pinnacles, caverns and drop offs.
One is often able to swim with the dolphins and sea turtles and this alone to many is worth the dive experience. Lobsters, eels, sting rays, and a large number of different kinds of fish are some of the other attractions for divers. The fish often include puffer fish, spotted fish, parrot fish and if lucky you may even come across the famous but rare Mexican walking fish. The axolotl is a species of salamander turned fish that is native to the Mexican lakes of Chalco and Xochimilco near Mexico City.
Also check-out Tres Rios which is an ecological park in an area of low subtropical jungle and mangrove in the Riviera Maya, between Cancun and Playa del Carmen. Tres Rios is the only area in the Riviera Maya where cenotes are at ground level in the form of fresh water wells that opens in to shallow underground rivers.
Unless you are an experienced diver, you are advised to go scuba diving with a trained professional, especially in the cenotes. Diving the cenotes has become very popular with tourists over the years and therefore booking a few days in advance is your best chance of enjoying the experience. You don’t want to be diving the cenotes amidst a huge crowd.
Beginners can learn to scuba dive at a number of locations right across the costal regions of Mexico. Many of these locations also offer guided tours which is a great idea if you haven’t been diving for a long time. Refresher courses and beginner lessons are offered as group lessons or private lessons. Private lessons may be more expensive, but many first time scuba divers find them rewarding, in more ways than one.
If you aren’t into scuba diving yet, you could try snorkelling which is sometimes equally rewarding. Underworld Scuba which is located in Manzanillo and also the Puerto Dive Team in Oaxaco are two companies that offer brilliant snorkelling expeditions which can sometimes last the whole day.
To find other guided tours that are designed for scuba divers, you are encouraged to look HERE, and use the search function to find tours and excursions by destination. Whether or not you have already selected your Mexico destination, you should easily be able to find a selection of tours on our partner website. The closer you are to the coast, the more tours you will have access to. What you can do and see underwater is absolutely amazing and the Mexican experience is guaranteed will stay with you for years to come.
You can book airport / resort transfers in Mexico here.