Whether you’re a first-timer or Certified Pro, you’ll have the opportunity to explore and photograph the stunning beauty of a fascinating undersea world of the Sea of Cortez. You’ll dive in moderate-to-warm-water that ranks among the clearest in the world, with the greatest variety of fish and aquatic critters anywhere! Although you may experience encounters with micro organisms, it’s the big fish that place the Sea of Cortez apart from other seas in the world. Just recently the Scripps Institute of Oceanography of UC San Diego, named Cabo Pulmo as “the world’s most robust marine reserve in the world”.
A Certified PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) instructor conducts a brief orientation followed by an underwater experience in a swimming pool.
Following the Pool Orientation, your English speaking PADI instructor conducts a short orientation followed by a closely supervised underwater experience in the pool. Next, there’s an introductory Scuba (Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) dive in shallow water. Here, accompanied by your PADI instructor, you will experience the same excitement shared by Scuba divers worldwide. Two person minimum; includes Scuba equipment.
A complete Open Water Certification course requires a minimum of three full days. The academic training material is available in a textbook or CD Rom format, which may be ordered through Our Dive Master prior to your trip.
The course consists of three phases:
- Academic training, five separate modules;
- Confined water training, (pool sessions) five separate modules;
- Open water training, four dives.
Each student is allowed to progress at his/her individual ability, must have studied the academic material prior to arrival and is required to read and understand the academic material; knowledge reviews for each module must be completed.
Upon arrival, the material will be reviewed with your PADI instructor prior to quizzes and final examination. This completes the academic training.
The confined water (pool) training allows hands-on experience with Scuba equipment for the student to become familiar with and master the necessary skills for Open Water Training.
Two Open Water Dives per day are allowed, so the open water portion of your training requires two days. Upon successful completion of this course, you will be awarded either the PADI Open Water Diver Card (minimum age 15 years) or the Junior Open Water Diver Card (minimum age 12 years). Either credential certifies your completion of training and your ability to meet the standard requirements established by PADI.
All tours depart in the morning and return between noon and 3:30 p.m. depending on dive location. Tours consist of two dives at two different sites. They include pick up from the resort’s boat dock, a certified PADI Divemaster tour guide, two aluminum 80 cu. ft. air tanks, weights and weight belt, fast boat with ample shade and a cooler with ice.
All dives are drift dives. Your Divemaster will accompany you underwater and the boat captain will follow with the boat. You need to arrange for lunch and beverage with the boat master at the restaurant the night prior to your dive tour. We recommend reservations; all others subject to space available. Scuba certification cards are required for rentals, air fills and dive tours.
The largest living coral reef on the North American continent was declared a Marine Preserve by the Mexican Government in 1995. The nine mile long site, with at least eight fingers of coral reefs, is recognized internationally. The amount of undersea life found inside the park is staggering in both volume and variety and is considered a premier must-see area for both diving and snorkeling in the Sea of Cortez.
Boat Ride: Less than an hour scenic boat trip south from the resort.
Dive’s Depth: The shallow dives vary from 25’ to 45’. These dives are great for beginners and for the resort course divers. The best sites are in the 50’ to 70’ and there are more challenging dives that can take up to 125’ deep.
Cerralvo Island offers dives for every skill level – beginner to expert. The island is home to an enormous number of species from smallest reef fish to billfish that are longer than the diver is tall! There are other great spots across from the Island, Punta Perico, La Ventana, Las Arenas among others, all with a unique aspect to each dive. You will have the opportunity to swim over large boulders containing cavern-like swim-throughs with fascinating visuals. Divers pass through astonishing rock formations until a huge maze of large channels marks the end of the exciting dive. Closer to the resort, you can also dive El Cardonal a beautiful shallow dive.
Boat Ride: Little over an hour boat ride to the north, with beautiful deserted coastal scenery.
Dives Depth: You can actually do a beach dive if you prefer, but most of dives are from a boat and range from 35’ to 70’.
These areas are the closest to our resort and they are great for beginner to intermediate divers. The rock formations from one site to the other change dramatically as well as the scenery, as Punta Pescadero is the final north point of Bahia de Palmas; therefore it is considered a migration point for many species. Also to the south at Cerro Verde you will find big rock formation and a rock route that can take you up to 90’ deep. We used to dive this spot for Caracol Burro (sea snail). And closer to the resort, just 5 minutes away, or 15 minutes walking from the hotel, you can find a small reef that’s full of life.
Boat Ride: This group of dive sites is the closest to our resort. It is a brief 20 minute boat ride. The closest site is almost in front of the hotel… a favorite for night dives.
Dives Depth: Normally all dive sites in this area start at 35’ and they average about 50’. You can follow some of the rock formations as deep as 90’.
About 50 miles south of the resort, this is an exciting open-blue water dive where the seamount thrust itself up from the ocean floor millions of years ago to approximately 100 feet beneath surface of the Sea of Cortez. The top of this seamount is covered with bushes of black coral. It is not unusual to come upon marlin, tuna, dorado and wahoo along with hammerheads, whale sharks and much, much more! Advanced divers; advanced reservations preferred.
Boat Ride: There are two ways to get to this destination: one is by boat, a two-hour boat ride, or by car, a one-hour car drive. It is about 30 minutes boat ride from the Marina.
Dives Depth: The top of the sea mount is about 110’ and from there on. Since it is open-blue water conditions and currents may vary, you need to be considered an expert for this dive. Reservations need to have 30 day notice.
We believe that our area is similar to Arizona with the Sea of Cortez added. Allowing us to enjoy our desert like landscape with a relatively dry climate similar to Southern California summers year around.
Our seasons are marginally different and tough to define. Regulars have their favorite month that all offers subtle differences. Diving here is World Class and consistent with predictable diving and snorkeling conditions that may be enjoyed any month of the year. Like someone once said there are no bad days…just different. We provide you with month-to-month conditions and species you might enjoy.
Our up-to-date dive reports are provided by Vista Sea Sport, the most respected dive service here at East Cape. Mark and Jennifer Rayor started the service in 1993 and both are certified PADI Instructors with thousands of hours of underwater experience. Their dive masters, Jesus (Chuy) Cota and Juan Diego Ramero both speak excellent English and are on the water – and under the water – every week of the year. Native to the East Cape, they have, between them, 35 years of quality experience handling boats on the Sea of Cortez.
Vista Sea Sport reports consist of real time description of current conditions and what can be expected if you were planning to dive now. In addition, there are current reports and description of existing conditions at the various dive sites throughout the area, providing both divers and snorkelers the latest diving conditions.