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cabo pulmo dive sites

The Cabo Pulmo Reef is the northernmost LIVING coral reef in the Eastern Pacific ocean and the ONLY living coral reef in the entire Sea of Cortez. It has become a popular attraction for divers visiting this remote area as well as divers shuttling in by various methods from both Cabo San Lucas and La Paz.

The reef itself owes its existence to the natural geography of the surrounding bay which shelters the reef and keeps the waters constant at approximately 70 degrees, an essential environment for coral growth. The bay is an ideal place for snorkelers and beginning divers with much of the reef accessible from shore. However, there are also spectacular sites awaiting the more advanced and experienced divers with most dives between 30-70 feet.

NOTE: Cabo Pulmo Bay, including Frailes Bay is part of an official Mexican Marine Park and Sanctuary. The taking of shellfish, marine life and fish is strictly prohibited. Additionally, the coral environment is extremely fragile and delicate. Extreme care should be exercised.

MERMAIDS BEACH

Sometimes called "Dinosaur Egg" beach because of the unusually uniform oval boulders that surround the cove. Excellent for beginning divers and snorkelers with an abundance of underwater structure and coral. Accessible by boat or a short hike along the southern shore of Pulmo Bay, it's a popular place to picnic, but secluded enough to keep out the big crowds that sometimes settle on other beaches along Pulmo Bay. Numerous fish are inside the cove forming Mermaids Beach, but just outside and around the point the waters drop to approximately 30-40 feet along an irregular rock wall with overhangs and small caves. Surge can be a problem outside the cove so only divers should venture outside the cove.

ISLOTE

A large rock promontory that pokes out from a largely sandy bottom at the south end of Pulmo Bay. The base of the rock spreads out in about 70 feet of water. The rock itself creates some great wall diving with fan coral, cabrilla, grouper and numerous varieties of reef fish inhabiting the site. At certain times of the year large schools of sizeable jacks by the hundreds congregate around the rock and rare golden grouper can often be found at the northern deeper facade of the rock wall. Conger eels, Morays and several species of Rays are also resident to the rock.

Frailes Rock Sea Lion Colony

Accessible only by boat or kayak, several rocks and platforms at the southern tip of Punta Frailes, serve to harbor several dozen sea lions who can usually been visited between January and October. The rocks are in approximately 10 feet of water dropping to approximately 40 feet of water making it ideal for snorkelers and divers alike. The sea lions can be playful and curious, but restraint should be exercised. Pelagic blue water species such as small Tuna, Dorado and Wahoo as well as larger Grouper and Cabrilla can sometimes be seen in the blue depths off the rocks cruising along the shoreline.

El Bajo

One of the long fingers or rock and coral, which proliferate the sea floor of Pulmo Bay, El Bajo, runs generally north/south in approximately 55 feet of water. When the current is right, this is truly an excellent drift dive when divers can literally fly along the ridges and stop to examine the varied sea life, which inhabits the numerous natural amphitheaters created by the reef. Grouper, Cabrilla, Sergeant Majors, Angelfish, Puffer fish and Grunts congregate in large numbers along the reef as well as Lobster, Eels and Rays.

Los Frailes Bay

Also part of the Pulmo Marine Park, Frailes Bay has several dive spots for both the beginning and advanced diver. Along the northern edge of Frailes Bay the rocky slopes follow down to the waters and descend to depths of 30-40 feet. The fallen boulders form a natural habitat for abundant marine life. An excellent spot for night diving as the rocks come alive with eels, pufferfish, lobster, scallops, grunts, parrotfish and other marine inhabitants. For more advanced divers the walls of the bay drop off into Frailes Canyon with reported depths of over 700â, much too deep for recreational divers, but worth exploring the shallower parts of the canyon with an experienced local divemaster. Keep in mind that Frailes is part of the Pulmo Marine Park and taking of all fish and shellfish is prohibited.

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