Socorro Islands in a Nutshell - Diving the Socorro Islands is a wide-angle adventure filled with giant manta and shark encounters, schooling fish, and other large pelagic marine life.
Water Temperature: Water temps range from 21-23C/70-74f during the winter and 24-28C/76-82f during late fall and spring. Usually a 5mm wetsuit with optional hooded vest works well at Socorro. Note that dive gloves are not permitted at Socorro by law
Depth Range: 33 - 100ft (10 - 30m)
Visibility: varies depending on the dive site, season, currents and other conditions. Roca Partida often has the best visibility, reaching over 100 feet. There are sometimes reports of lower visibility in November/December (when whale sharks are found feeding on plankton).
Typical Socorro Dive - We recommend Socorro for experienced divers due to the exposed nature of the diving. The islands often see choppy seas and strong currents (which attract the rich pelagic life). The diving is correspondingly rugged, with rocky structure and some huge walls. Liveaboards will typically run 3 to 4 dives per day, diving the best sites at Socorro Island, Roca Partida and San Benedicto.
SAN BENEDICTO ISLAND - EL FONDEADERO
El Fondeadero is often dove first. Its generally pretty calm and not too deep so its where some boats go checkout dive. There are three large pinnacles full of lobster, fish, eels and occasionally shark.
SAN BENEDICTO ISLAND - THE BOILER
A large pinnacle rises to about 20 feet from the surface, so you can't see it from topside. The surf and swell running across the top sometimes making the water look like its boiling. The pinnacle is small enough to swim around during one dive and its very majestic looking from all angles. The bottom is at around 160' so getting your weights right and not being too heavy is very important. This area is a popular cleaning station for the giant Pacific manta. They gather here to be cleaned by the Clarion Angelfish.
It is usually just a matter of a few minutes in the water before the mantas started to show up. As they approach, they look you right in the eye, and you DO feel like you are communicating with them. On a past trip in March we were fortunate enough to see a humpback whale underwater here, and shortly after, a Tiger shark.
SAN BENEDICTO ISLAND - THE CANYON
"El Canyon" is on the south end of the island. It was here that we had seen many mantas, dolphins, Galapagos sharks, silky sharks, and schools of hammerheads off the point.
SOCORRO ISLAND - CABO PEARCE
Cabo Pearce is located on the east side of Socorro Island. You can expect to see dolphins, humpback whales and mantas.
SOCORRO ISLAND - PUNTA TOSCA
Punta Tosca is another site on Socorro Island. There are often playful, sociable dolphins here, and sometimes Silky sharks.
The afternoon dives were done on the other side of the island at a spot called "The Aquarium". We could see whales just offshore the entire time we were there and we enjoyed a beautiful sunset.
Roca Partida is a guano covered pinnacle about 85 miles from San Benedicto Island. About 100' high and as long as a football field, the pinnacle is in the middle of nowhere and is a magnet to pelagics. This is where you can see many sharks, mantas, huge schools of fish, and whale sharks (you must be very lucky). A diver on a recent trip saw Oceanic whitetips and Scalloped Hammerheads here in January.
Topside & Non-Diving Activities - Cabo San Lucas, and to a lesser degree San Jose Del Cabo, offer a range of non-diving activitites, including golf, fishing, village visits and various other options. Once you're at sea, however, topside activities are limited to standard liveaboard entertainment: catching up with fellow divers, editing photos, reading, etc. There is not much else to do there!
Currency: Mexican Peso
Language: Spanish is the official language in Mexico but most people today learn English as a second language
Time Zone: UTC-7
Electricity: 127 V 60 Hz
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