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Taking the Plunge: Diving Adventures in Cabo San Lucas

Taking the Plunge: Diving Adventures in Cabo San Lucas

Manta Ray, photo by Carlos Varela

Imagine an undersea fantasia of soft coral, sponges, sand falls, schools of tropical fish – colorful king angelfish, pufferfish, parrotfish, surgeon fish, guitarfish – and picture yourself navigating this pristine pelagic environment, experiencing unforgettable close-up encounters with eels, seals, manta rays and sharks.

Exploring the underwater wonders of Cabo San Lucas Bay. Image: Cabo Adventures.

There are many things to love about Cabo San Lucas. First-class activities abound, from fishing and golf to shopping and spa services. The diving is superb here as well, and scuba-inclined visitors don’t have to head up the East Cape to Cabo Pulmo, home of the oldest and largest living coral reef in the Western Hemisphere, to appreciate the aquatic abundance teeming in the Sea of Cortez. There are a number of great sites in Cabo San Lucas Bay.

Cabo Adventures runs one of the best dive operations in town, with three hour tours in the mornings and afternoons. About half that time is spent in the water, the other half checking out and trying on equipment, and getting out to Land’s End and back on their 46′ dive boat. Two tank dive tours are the norm, with a tank each at two of the top spots in Cabo San Lucas Bay, chosen according to the skill level of the divers and the water conditions.

Better known sites in the bay include Pelican Rock, Neptune’s Finger, and The Point. Each site boasts unique features, from the degree of depth to the quality and quantity of marine life. Pelican Rock is famed for its sand falls and profusion of tropical fish; Neptune’s Finger showcases coral, sponges, and sea fans; while diving The Point offers opportunities to see sea turtles, sea lions, moray eels, whale sharks, and the occasional octopus. In addition to the excellent diving, the trip also includes a guided boat tour with beverages, snacks, and photo opportunities of local landmarks like Land’s End and The Arch.

Dive trips include a guided tour of local landmarks like Land’s End and The Arch. Image: Cabo Adventures

Cabo Adventures offers one dive tour outside the bay, at Cabeza de Ballena. This is an excellent shallow divesite, perfect for beginners and advanced divers alike, with plenty of soft coral, tropical fish, sea turtles, and the occasional octopus. This dive is available only on request, and advance notice is required.

The diving in Cabo San Lucas Bay is good year round, but water temperatures and visibility vary, so it’s a good idea to check on current conditions before you make reservations. As might be expected, the water is warmest during the summer and autumn months. From July through October, water temperatures typically range from 75 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit. Visibility is best during the autumn months, and since this coincides with the off-season for tourism, it’s also a great time to find discounted deals on accommodations and activities.

General Information

How to Get There: Dive tours meet at the Cabo Dolphin Center, located near the Cultural Pavilion on the Cabo San Lucas Marina. Check in times are typically at 8:30 a.m., and 12:30 p.m. Tours are three hours in duration, and round-trip ground transportation from your hotel or resort can usually be arranged if you call in advance.

What to Bring: Cabo Adventures provides all dive equipment, but you should bring a swimsuit. Sun protection is a good idea for your time on the boat, and a jacket is recommended after diving during the winter months.

Cost: For certified divers, two tank dives cost $120 U.S. Courses for beginners are also $120, and refresher courses cost $35. There is a bubblemaker program for children under 8, and PADI certifications are also available.

How to book: You can book tours by contacting our Baja.com Travel Savants!  See below….

Other Dive Options in Cabo San Lucas:  Amigos del Mar: Plaza Gali, Marina Boulevard, Cabo San Lucas.

Baja.com is a comprehensive online source of first-hand travel information for the Baja California Peninsula, supported by a full-service tour operator staffed by Baja locals (our “Baja Travel Savants”). We offer Baja travelers expert advice about localrestaurants,hotels and vacation rentals, as well as guides, maps and articles about events, sports and activities. We provide bilingual customer support, information and sales seven days a week, 365 days a year.  For more information, please call toll-free (US/CAN) 855-BAJA-411 or email us at info@baja.com.

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About Chris Sands

Chris Sands is the author of Bohemia by the Bay, and writes about wine, golf, and travel for publications such as Baja.com, Los Cabos Guide, Los Cabos Magazine, 10 Best, and USA Today. He is a full-time resident of Cabo San Lucas.

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