Ask anyone where they suggest you take your next (or first!) dive vacation and you’ll always hear Cozumel. Why? What’s so great about this place that everyone and their mothers want you to dive there? We looked into it and here are the top ten reasons Cozumel is the perfect dive destination.
1) Easy Flight
Your ideal vacation awaits, but before you get there you have to get through all the trials of airport travel. Cozumel is a direct two and a half hour flight from Dallas, meaning no wasted time sitting in the airport and dealing with pesky plane changes or lost luggage. The ease of travel makes it an equally great destination for a short weekend trip or a months-long Divemaster internship.
2) Trip Advisor Reviews
Normally, I tell people to take online reviews with a grain of salt, but if you need proof that the diving in Cozumel is some of the best in the world, look no further than the top-rated things to do. Santa Rosa Wall and Columbia Reef ring in at numbers four and five on the list while Palancar Reef takes the number one spot. Where else in the world is a specific dive site even on the list much less number one? If those reviews don’t convince you to go to Cozumel, I don’t know what will.
3) Crystal Clear Water
The dive conditions in Cozumel could not be better. Visibility upwards of 200 feet is a daily reality and the water temperatures average in the mid-80s most of the year. The water clarity makes Cozumel a particularly good destination for underwater photographers. Don’t forget to enjoy the beautiful shades of blue you can see from your hotel balcony as you watch the sunset after a great day of diving.
4) Marine Park
The entire South coast of Cozumel has been a protected marine area since 1996 and you can tell from the minute you jump in. The reef is pristine and the fish life is diverse and abundant. Cozumel is home to several protected animals such as turtles, queen conch, and black coral. There’s even a fish that is found in the reefs surrounding Cozumel and nowhere else in the world, the Cozumel Splendid Toadfish. Every diver in Cozumel contributes to the marine park fund and makes a difference in protecting such majestic beauty.
5) Dive Sites for all Levels
Maybe it’s your first ever ocean dive or maybe you’ve had thousands, either way, there’s a perfect dive site for everyone in Cozumel. Reefs range from an easy and colorful 9 feet to a tec-divers-only 300+ feet. Boat dives are most common, but shore diving is also available in many places. There’s also a site to captivate every interest. From the fish ID guru looking for seahorses to the history buff swimming through Cozumel’s wrecks, every diver can find what they’re looking for among Cozumel’s 30+ dive sites.
6) Concierge Diving
With so many yearly visitors, you may worry that the boats are piled high with divers and there’s more traffic on the reef than I-35, but with a huge array of dive sites spanning the entire coast and a multitude of dive operators to choose from, you are sure to find a personalized dive experience. Many operators (link to wbd coz) pride themselves on small groups and private instruction and dive guiding. Pampered doesn’t even begin to describe how you’ll be treated in Cozumel.
7) No Need for Fins!
That’s a bit of an exaggeration, but Cozumel is the perfect spot for the extra lazy diver because the year-round drift means you barely have to kick and there’s no having to navigate back to the boat. If you’ve never done a drift dive before, don’t be nervous. Exerting less energy on swimming reduces strain on your muscles and saves precious air, increasing your bottom time. Your dive guide will deploy a surface marker buoy during your safety stop so the boat picks you up right where you ascend with no long surface swims.
The island of Cozumel is only six miles from mainland Mexico. An easy 45-minute ferry ride leaves almost once an hour between 6 AM and 11 PM, 365 days a year to connect Cozumel and Playa Del Carmen. Head over for a day-trip to dive or swim in some world-famous cenotes (inland caverns) or take a tour of Mayan ruins. With two unique destinations so close together, it’s like getting a bonus vacation within your vacation.
9) Fun for the Whole Family
Being a diver in a family of non-divers can make picking a vacation destination challenging, but not when you go to Cozumel. White, sandy beaches are perfect for laying out and relaxing while adventure tours like ATVs or horseback riding, will keep everyone entertained. There’s also plenty to explore downtown for the shopper or foodie in your group.
10) Good Vibes!
It’s no secret that the people of Cozumel are some of the friendliest in the world. With so much good diving at their fin tips, why wouldn’t they be happy every day? From the divemasters to the townspeople, every resident will make you feel more like family than a visitor. Spend a single vacation here and you’ll be flying home wishing you had never left.