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Top sites for scuba diving adventures in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is one of the world’s greenest destinations and over recent years it has become a hotspot or adventure lovers. With two coastlines facing the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean, there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy scuba diving and snorkelling adventures in the country, and it is home to a variety of diving sites such as Cocos Island, Cano Island and Catalina Islands.

Top sites for scuba diving adventures in Costa Rica

Over recent years, Costa Rica has gained a reputation for being a destination for adventure and nature lovers. With two coastlines facing two difference oceans, there are plenty of places to enjoy snorkelling and scuba diving adventures.

With both a Caribbean coastline and a coastline facing the Pacific Ocean, there are a plethora of diving sites where visitors can explore the diverse marine life in crystal clear waters. The sea temperature in Costa Rica is around 21oC to 29oC, and the country’s dry season is November to May. However, if travellers want to catch sightings of hammerhead sharks, the beautiful creatures can be seen off the coast during the rainy season between June and November.

Diving sites around Costa Rica are plentiful and divers can explore the underwater volcanic rock formations, pinnacles and wide range of hard coral, soft coral, and sponges. Here are some of the best scuba diving sites to explore in Costa Rica.

Cocos Island

Located about 300 miles off the mainland, Cocos Island is a World Heritage Site. The island is a great place to see marlin, sharks, and sailfish feeding in the nutrient-rich waters, and visitors can catch sightings of whale sharks and schools of hammerhead sharks.

Sea temperature averages between 24°C and 26°C, and visibility is between six and 25 metres. Divers can see a wide range of sea creatures including White Tip Reef Sharks, Dolphins, red-lipped batfish, octopi, eels, and Hammer Head Sharks.

Big Scare, Bat Island

The Big Scare drop at Bat Island measures more than 30 metres, and has ever-changing currents, so it’s best for advanced divers only. Visibility is seven to 23 metres, and divers might get the chance to swim with bull sharks. Marine species that frequent the waters include seahorses, devil rays, eagle rays, manta rays and whale sharks.

Catalina Islands

Located on the northwest side of the Pacific coast in the Gulf of Papagayo, Catalina Islands has six dive sites that are home to beautiful underwater arches, caves, caverns and volcanic rock formations. With visibility between five and 35 metres, divers will catch sightings of colourful corals, white tip reef sharks, sea turtles, moray eels, giant grouper, manta rays, and snapper. Visibility is usually between 5m and 35m.

Cano Island

Cano Island is situated in Drake Bay, on the northwest side of the Osa Peninsula, and it is one of the world’s most bio-diverse regions. There’s a variety of wildlife both on land and underwater, and it’s a top spot to see manta rays. Beneath the surface of the sea, divers can see jagged shelves, plates, drop-offs and large reef systems that encircle the idyllic island. The waters boast diverse marine creatures including orca whales, dolphins, pilot and humpback whales, and there’s a PADI dive centre at Pirate Cove Hotel where visitors can improve their scuba diving skills. 

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