Our Favorite Cozumel Dives


With the exception of the cenote dives, we’ve been on all of the dives discussed on these pages; most of them many, many times. And to be perfectly honest, we’ve loved almost all of them. All have virtues that will make them perfect choices for different types of divers or for divers with different agendas on different days. For that reason, we purposely didn’t title this section Best Dives In Cozumel because in our opinion, nobody can say any dive in Cozumel or anywhere else for that matter is the “ABSOLUTE BEST!” all the time for everybody. The following are simply our favorites for the different situations given. All are discussed in more detail in the section above.

Our Favorite Resort Area Deep Dive

The southern section of Columbia Deep. Columbia Deep is the name given to a large section of reef on the southern end of the typical resort diving area. The area just north of Punta Sur is our favorite section. It offers huge coral formations that rise from a depth of over 200 feet, a portion on a deep wall and lots of crevasses and caves. Our choice for a close runner-up is Little Horseshoe.

Our Favorite Wall Dive in the resort diving area

Cedral Wall. This is a beautiful wall with changing topography and excellent fish life. And for some reason, it doesn’t get half the diver traffic that some less desirable walls get.

Our Favorite Shallow Wall Dive

San Francisco Wall. This wall tops out at about 50 feet and the best coral is at 65 feet and above. There is good and varied fish life available and while there is a current, it is usually gentle. All this makes San Francisco a good choice for an introduction to drift diving on a wall.

Our Favorite Shallow Dive

Paso de Cedral. This is a hard choice because to be perfectly honest, we used to like this dive more than we do now. The qualification is due to the damage done to the shallower portions of the dive by Hurricane Wilma in 2005.  But the first reason we’ve always like Cedral remains; it is still offers beautiful low coral and lots of fish.  Depending on how much air you have left and the current on the particular day you are there, once you pass the caves with the silver sides, you can end this dive in any of several directions. The second reason we really like Cedral is actually the safety stop.  While doing your stop at Cedral, keep an eye on the water below as we’ve seen spotted eagle rays and turtles while doing ours there on more than one occasion. Yucab comes in a close second and has the advantage of lighter diver pressure.

Our Favorite High Octane Shallow Dive

Punta Tunich. We love to find our depth, relax and just fly down this colorful low profile reef.  To this writer, it seems a lot like what we imagine flying would feel like.

Our Favorite Boat Dives to take a snorkeler along

Columbia Shallow and Palancar Gardens. Both of these have colorful coral and lots of fish and top out close enough to the surface that they’re easily enjoyed by snorklers too. Because Columbia Shallow is so far south (and therefore a long way from town) it may be hard to talk your dive master into making it a second dive but if you get the chance to make this dive, go for it.  It gives the sensation of a leisurely stroll through a lovely garden.

Our Favorite Exotic Dive

The Ocean side near Playa Bonita. We’ve made this dive quite a few times and we’re still not sure of the name of the site. Every time we ask the different dive masters we’ve gone with, each has said it was named after themselves. We know the reputation of danger in diving the Ocean side but if you can get there on a calm day early in the morning before the current picks up, this site offers the chance to flow across and between pristine coral ridges that stretch as far as the eye can see in moderate currents. In reality, the surface conditions are a lot worse than it is under water. On occasion, we’ve caught fish and lobster at this site and brought them back to the restaurant at Playa Bonita for lunch. Can you say fresh seafood?