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La chorera, 25 m de la calle principal, playas del Coco
Diving the Guanacaste
A look into the waters of the Gulf of Papagayo in Playa del Coco, Costa Rica
A little bit of science !!
Diving on the North Pacific coast of Costa Rica is always a great moment, each dive is unique and full of surprises !! Whether you love macro or pelagic species, you will not be disappointed, the temperate waters of the ocean are home to many species as well as an impressive amount of underwater life. So come and discover its secrets and meet turtles, cetaceans, manta rays, bull sharks, seahorses, nudibranchs and why not a whale shark passing by !!
Curiously, this richness of marine life results from the trade winds which blow from the center of the continent towards the ocean and move large quantities of surface water for miles offshore. This displacement of water causes a resurgence effect of cold water from the depths of the ocean, rich in nutrients, eggs, larvae and other microorganisms, who provide an elaborate concentration of food for those who are "Higher" in the food chain.
This density of micro-life supports and nourishes dozens of phytoplankton and zooplankton species, hundreds of fish species, many types of cetaceans, 4 species of turtles and thousands of mollusks, crustaceans, algae, sponges, corals, jellyfish and anemones. Costa Rica's oceans are home to a total of 6,778 different species, or 3.5% of all known marine life. In other words, this marine territory represents barely 0.0016 of the total volume of the ocean, but includes 1 marine species out of 28 on the planet.
Beyond the 20 exceptional local dive sites of the Gulf of Papagayo and many others to discover, we are fortunate to be close to two other world class diving places: the Catalina Islands (Islas Catalinas) renowned for meetings with manta rays and the Bat Islands (Islas Murciélago) inhabited by bulldog sharks.
All dive sites have their secrets and their particularity so each dive is a surprise where anything can happen. Those who have already dived here know everything is uncertain but anyway it will always be ... a dive to remember !!
Whether you like macro or large pelagic, there is something for everyone, finding a seahorse and admiring a manta ray is possible in a single dive ... it will all depend on what nature wants to offer us !!
Many divers we interviewed summarized their point of view on the region as well: these waters are not the clearest waters on the planet, however meeting such a great abundance of marine life is incredible as well as the close encounters with several creatures bigger than us ... (or pelagic)?
This is why this area is unique. And we are waiting for you to come and find out if it is not already done …
Visibility in the area can be quite inconsistent ranging from 4 to 26 m (13 to 80 feet). On a given day, you have magnificent visibility and the next day you may find yourself swimming in
a broth of microorganisms. But we always make sure that we know the weather conditions and the currents to give you the best possible experience.
However, even with very poor visibility, the high concentration of life offers an exceptional experience, full of observations and meetings, from the tiny to the monumental.
The best visibility is from June to September between 13 and 26 m (40 to 80 feet), while the lowest visibility generally occurs from October to February between 4 to 17 m (13 to 50 feet), but this period offers the best opportunity to observe large pelagic species.
Do not expect to see multicolored corals (although there is a little bit !!), but rather a landscape formed by islands, pinnacles and volcanic rock formations surrounded by sandbanks which can hide wrecks… Here you will find all the ingredients necessary for an abundant underwater life, you will not be disappointed. The depth on the dive sites varies from 12 to 36 m (40 to 110 feet), with a water temperature between 20 and 27 C ° (70 ° F and 82 ° F) strongly influenced by cold thermoclines (up to '' at 16 ° C, 60 ° F), this is why it is recommended to always wear a suit of 3 mm or more !!
In any case, diving in the Gulf of Papagayo is a magnificent experience throughout the year, life is abundant and beautiful encounters are always there.