Cozumel

 

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Bay Adventures Dive TravelClick on reef names in map for a description

National Reef Park of Cozumel

Cozumel is famous for its spectacular reefs and due to their intensive use and ecological importance and fragility, most of the reefs surrounding the island and lagoons on its south side were declared as the "Arrecifes de Cozumel" National Park in 1996.

One of the greatest threats to this world-renowned dive destination is tourism itself. With an average of 1,500 visitors a day we all must do our part to keep the reefs healthy. There are many things you can do as a responsible diver to promote sustainable use of the reefs.

Choose dive operations that contribute to reef conservation by giving thorough orientations and use clean motors on their boats. Avoid all contact with corals and other marine life, never feed fish, make sure all gear is secured close to your body, avoid swimming through reef caves, avoid stirring sand and never stand, rest or hold on to corals. View all wildlife from a distance. Don't use gloves or knives and use only biodegradable non-oily sun block. Make sure all your dive buddies understand and comply with reef friendly practices. Congratulate your dive guide for enforcing good practices. Refuse to buy souvenirs made from coral or other marine life. Eat at restaurants that keep reef sensitive species off their menus.

Mexican law establishes a $20 pesos user fee for all marine protected areas. Request your proof of payment to ensure your money goes where it is supposed. Deep down we must conserve. Barracuda Reef Los Atolones Bajo de Molas Cantarell (Sand Bank) Cardona Chankanaab Chen Río Chun Chacaab Reef Colombia Reef El Islote El Mirador La Francesa Las Palmas Maracaibo Reef Paraiso Reef Playa Bosh Punta Dalila Palancar Reef Paso del Cedral Reef Punta Morena Punta Sur Reef San Francisco Reef San Juan Reef Santa Rosa Wall Villa Blanca Wall Tormentos Reef Yucab Reef Punta Tunich Wall

The Reefs of Cozumel

Los Atolones. Mini atolls approximately 15 feet tall. Varied fishlife. Depth: 15 to 30 feet.

Bajo de Molas. Coral Heads. Fishlife: rays, sharks and sea turtles. Caution: strong current. Depth: 40 to 80 feet.
Molas (Sand Bank). Sponges and soft corals amidst hills of sand. Commonly seen are: nurse sharks, rays, sea turtles and other large fish. Strong current.  Depth: 35 to 90 feet.

Barracuda. Fishlife: large angelfish, nurse sharks, rays and other large fish. Mountainous coral ridges with peaks at 70 feet then slopes into the abyss. (Caution, strong current)

Cantarell (Sand Bank). Sponges, soft coral amidst a large sand bank. Also seen are nurse sharks, rays, sea turtles and other large fishlife. Depth:35 to 90 feet then slopes into the abyss.

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Cardona. Varied coral. Abounding fishlife. Excellent for snorkeling. Depth: 18 to 30 feet.

Chankanaab Park. Coral heads and scattered coral; 14 foot statue of Christ and smaller statue of the Virgin Mary. Abounding fishlife. Excellent shore dive. Depth: 20 feet.

Chankanaab Reef. Coral heads. Abounding fishlife; sea turtles, rays, grouper and amberjacks. Depth: 50 to 90 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Chankanaab (Shallow). Lobster and large crab species; various coral species to include soft coral. Abounding fishlife. Excellent for night diving. Depth: 30 to 50 feet.

Chen Rio. Scattered coral. Varied fishlife. Depth: 60 feet then slopes into the abyss.

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Chun Chancaab. Scattered coral on sand bottom. Large fish. Caution: strong current. Depth: 80 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Colombia (Deep). Varied fishlife; large sea turtles, rays and nurse sharks are often seen. Coral pillars 50 feet tall resting at 90 feet on white sand bottom; at 90 feet the reef slopes into the abyss.

Colombia (Shallow). Varied coral; abounding fishlife. Excellent for snorkeling. Depth: 30 feet.

Dzul Ha. Nice patch reef just off shore. Excellent for snorkeling with easy in and out from shore.

El Islote. Scattered coral. Varied fishlife. Depth: 40 to 80 feet.

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El Mirador. Scattered coral. Varied fishlife. Caution: dangerous undertoe. Depth: 35 feet.

La Francesa. Small sand hills covered with scattered coral and sponges. Varied fishlife, nurse sharks, sea turtles and rays. Caution: strong current and fire coral. Depth: 40 to 80 feet.

Las Palmas. Abounding sponges and gargonians with scattered coral. Varied fishlife. Depth: wall starts at 40 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Maracaibo (Punta). Large sand hills with varied coral & large coral formations. Abounding soft coral & sponges. Varied fishlife to include large rays, sea turtles and sharks. Strong current. Depth: 60 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Maracaibo (Shallow). Varied coral. Abounding fishlife. Excellent for snorkeling. Depth: 10 feet.

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Paraiso. Large reef with varied coral. Section A: scattered coral at 18 feet deep. Section B: scattered coral at 45 to 50 feet deep. Section C: abounding coral and sponges at 50 feet deep then slopes into the abyss. Various dives necessary to cover the Paraiso Reef System.

Playa Bosh. Scattered coral and varied fishlife. Depth: 30 to 40 feet.

Palancar (Caves). Abounding fishlife, grouper and sea turtles. Many passages through coral formations resting on white sand bottom; peaks at 35 to 40 feet deep then slopes into the abyss.

Palancar (Gardens). Scattered coral and sponges on sand bottom. Abounding fishlife, grouper, sea turtles and rays.  Depth: 30 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Palancar (Horseshoe). Varied coral and sponges. Varied fishlife. Large coral formations start at 25 feet then slopes into the abyss.

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Paso del Cedral (Shallow). Varied coral and sponges. Varied fishlife; grouper, various kinds of morays, nurse sharks and sea turtles. Depth: 30 to 60 feet.

Paso del Cedral (Wall). Scattered coral and varied fishlife. Caution: Fire coral. Depth: wall starts at 40 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Punta Dalila. Varied coral and sponges. Abounding angelfish. Caution: strong current and fire coral. Depth: 30 to 60 feet.

Punta Morena. Scattered coral and varied fishlife. Depth: 40 feet.

Punta Sur (Deep). Large coral formations on sand bottom. Varied fishlife; large sharks and rays. Depth: 70 feet then slopes into the abyss.

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Punta Sur (Shallow). Abounding coral and fishlife. Excellent for snorkeling. Depth: 18 to 30 feet.

San Francisco Reef. Small coral on sand bottom. Abounding fishlife to include rays and sea turtles. Depth: wall starts at 40 feet then slopes into the abyss.

San Juan. Endless hills of finger coral. Abounding fishlife; nurse sharks, rays and other large reef fish. Depth: 35 to 70 feet. (Caution, strong current)

Santa Rosa Wall. Coral ridges, caves and abounding fishlife. Caution: strong current and fire coral. Depth: wall starts at 40 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Santa Rosa (Shallow). Coral formations amidst sand bottom. Abounding fishlife; nurse sharks, rays and sea turtles. Caution: strong current. Depth: 30 to 60 feet.

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Tormentos. Varied coral and sponges. Abounding fishlife; morays and grouper amidst a great sand bank. Depth: 30 to 60 feet.

Tunich Wall. Mayan translation: Rocks (Tunich). Small ridges, various species of sponges. Abounding fishlife; green morays, rays, sea turtles. Caution: strong current. Depth: 35 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Villa Blanca Wall. Huge abounding sponges and gargonians with varied fishlife; wall starts at 35 feet then slopes into the abyss.

Wreck C-53. The mine sweeper C-53 was sunk in 1999 in 82' of water. It is home to an abundance of soft corals, sponges and tropical fish.

Yucab. Varied coral and sponges on sand bottom. Abounding fishlife; morays, grouper, lobster and crab. Excellent for night diving. Caution: Fire Coral.  Depth: 35 to 60 feet.

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Help Protect Our Reefs

Cozumel is famous for its spectacular reefs and due to their intensive use and ecological importance and fragility, most of the reefs surrounding the island and lagoons on its south side were declared as the “Arrecifes de Cozumel” National Park in 1996.
One of the greatest threats to this world renowned dive destination is tourism itself. With an average of 1,500 visitors a day we all must do our part to keep the reefs healthy. There are many things you can do as a responsible diver to promote sustainable use of the reefs such as:

Before you Dive
Choose dive operations that contribute to reef conservation by giving thorough orientations, and use clean motors on their boats.

While you Dive
Avoid all contact with corals and other marine life, never feed fish, make sure all gear is secured close to your body, avoid swimming through reef caves, avoid stirring sand and never stand, rest or hold on to corals. View all wildlife from a distance. Don’t use gloves or knives and use only biodegradable non-oily sun block.

Between Dives
Make sure all your dive buddies understand and comply with reef friendly practices.

After Diving
Congratulate your dive guide for enforcing good practices. Refuse to buy souvenirs made from coral or other marine life. Eat at restaurants that keep reef sensitive species off their menus.

Give a Hand to Conservation
Mexican law establishes a Mex $25 pesos user fee for all marine protected areas. Request your proof of payment to ensure your money goes where it is supposed to. Deep down we must conserve.

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