Our dive sites are accessible within a thirty minute boat ride. Our local dive sites offer white tip reef sharks, giant schools of grunt, yellowtails, spotted eagle rays, turtles, stingrays, angel fish, octopus, sea horses, starfish, frog fish and many species of eels. We have also seen whale sharks up to 35 feet long on numerous occasions, as well as, spinner dolphin, humpback whales, pilot whales, orcas, false killer whales and schools containing hundreds of Mobulas and thousands of cow-nosed rays.
Average visibility ranges from 30 ft. to 50 ft. with possibilities of up to 80 ft. We dive volcanic rock formations and rock pinnacles. There is very little hard coral, but we do have black coral, soft coral and orange cup coral that opens up at night. There is an abundance of life among the rocks which can be seen on both day and night dives.
Night dives are consistently a favorite. We begin the dive with a relaxing ride during which you will experience a sunset unlike any other. The dive itself offers you the chance to explore the micro life, along with very large puffer fish, nudibranchs, gigantic slumbering parrot fish, lobster, tube worms and sea horses. In addition to the marine life we take the opportunity to extinguish our lights and play by the light of the phosphorous, which can create quite a light show. The cup coral, open at night is stupendous.
Also offered are long-range dive trips to both the Catalina and Bat Islands. The best months for diving the Catalina Islands are December through April, where schools of Manta rays with wing spans from 14 ft. to 20 ft. have been seen along with numerous white tip sharks and occasional bull or tiger shark. This site is also known for the large schools of mobula rays and cow-nosed rays. The Catalina Islands are considered a slightly more advanced dive due to stronger currents and surge.
The relaxing cruise to the Bat Islands is a worthwhile trip year round, weather permitting. However, March through November are the optimum months for this long range trip. Here you might see the impressive 8 to 14 foot Bull sharks, schools of cow-nosed rays, eagle rays, and an occasional Manta ray, along with the ever present varieties of larger schooling fish: rainbow runners, horse-eye jacks, spade fish, pompano, snapper and wahoo. This is a challenging dive, but well worth the extra effort.
Some additional information you might find useful. Water temperature from mid-May to mid-December is generally from 75ƒ-78ƒ at depth and a polartec or 3MM suit are usually sufficient. From mid-December to mid-April, water temperatures vary from day to day, with thermoclines causing temperatures to dip to 70ƒ at depth so you will want to bring a full 3MM suit during this period (5 MM if you are easily chilled). The outside temperature at the beaches is 85ƒ to 90ƒ year round. The rainy season runs from May to November, with these months providing some of our best diving. Since we are located in a protected Gulf and do not have rivers draining into our water and visibility is not adversely affected by the rain. In fact, visibility is often enhanced as the rain settles the plankton and rich nutrients that are abundant in Costa Rica.
We offer 4 Diving Options for your convenience:
Costa Rica's North Pacific coast is the diving world's newest discovery.Few places in the world have waters with such varied and plentiful marine life. Couple this with the Ocotal's luxurious resort facilities, dive boats and professional dive masters, the country's natural beauty and is warm, friendly people, and you have the most exciting alternative to traditional dive destinations.
The Travel Store
San Jose, Costa Rica
You can reach our San Jose, Costa Rica office from any of the following phone numbers:
Costa Rica: 011-506-2279-8927
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FAX: 011-506-2279-2479 from Costa Rica and all other countries
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