Diving in Puerto Morelos
Home to the best preserved section of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef
Puerto Morelos is home to the best preserved section of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef. This part of the second largest barrier reef in the world (also called Great Maya reef) is also closer to land in Puerto Morelos than anywhere else in Mexico. This is why diving in Puerto Morelos will blow your mind!
Where is Puerto Morelos?
Puerto Morelos is conveniently situated right between Cancun and Playa del Carmen, so you’ll have access to the amazing dive sites in both of these destinations as well as those of Cozumel and Isla Mujeres. It takes around 40 minutes in a car. The best way to get here is either by a ADO bus, by Colectivo or with a private driver.
Puerto Morelos diving highlights
Scuba diving in Puerto Morelos is great and very varied. The reef located off the shores of Puerto Morelos is part of a protected national marine park. Highlights include:
- Shipwreck C-56 Mind Sweeper
- Short distance boat rides
- Untouched corals
- Abundant extraordinary marine life with more than 2500 species
- Uncrowded cenotes
- Easy dives with no strong currents
- Dive for beginner to advanced divers
- Prossibility to do snorkeling in Puerto Morelos if you are not into diving
Puerto Morelos National Marine Park
Puerto Morelos is a small fishing village and that’s the reason why local residents carefully and delicately preserve this reef that you find only a half kilometer from its coast. In fact, thanks to their efforts, it was declared a protected National Park in 1998. As a results of theirs efforts, you can find an endless variety of corals, turtles, lobsters, rays, local fish and even nurse and bull sharks. In winter, the currents bring entire families of eagle rays that, if you have never had the chance to see, will make you desire to stop time and have a cylinder that lasts forever. This is a habitat for over 2500 marine species (500 of which are tropical fish) as well as the C-56 Juan Escutia Wreck. You can also go snorkeling in the Riviera Maya from different beaches along the coast.
Puerto Morelos Dive Sites
Puerto Morelos offers a few great dive sites. The best thing about diving in Puerto Morelos is that you don’t have to spend a long time in the boat as the reef is so close to the shore. It only takes an average of 15 minutes to get out to the first dive spot!
Reef & Juan Escutia C-56 Shipwreck
Fish Garden – Multiple colors and diverse fish inhabit this beautiful area of this shallow reef. About 30 ft maximum depth, decent line. Excellent site for novice divers, long bottom times and photography. Short boat ride, just 8 minutes from the Marina.
The Gardens is a wonderful site appropriately named for its lovely coral gardens and it is part of the national marine park, beautiful and easy diving in Puerto Morelos.
Aquarium – Intermediate dive site of 47 feet maximum depth. Also know as Jardines or finger reef, this site is expansive with many routs through its riches of life. Mini canons (fingers) of coral where you can drop down out of the current and be surrounded by healthy reef, but good buoyancy control is key. Large schools of pork fish and grunts, eels, rays and sometimes turtles can be seen here.
Puentes, a site with natural bridges and swim throughs where you can see eagle rays and all sorts of reef fish.
Mini Wall – Another shallow site of about 30 ft maximum depth. Large and interesting coral formations, man-made lobster homes and sometimes turtles sightings in the grass.
Mineshipwreck Juan Escutia, probably the most interested and impressive dive site in Puerto Morelos. You will see and swimm through a large navy minesweeper, a site teaming with aquatic life. Scuttled in October of 2000, this WWII era US Navy gun ship is now fully encrusted in coral growth. Home to sting rays, eels and barracuda. When in season, spotted eagle rays can be seen flying over the wreck. Schools of bait fish and their predators can often be seen. This is a must see for any wreck lover and a must see while diving in Puerto Morelos.
Cenote Dives Puerto Morelos
Diving in cenotes is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. You will get to explore natural sinkholes formed from limestone bedrock. As Tulum is famous for cenotes diving, in the RUTA DE LOS CENOTES in Puerto Morelos, there are 3 cenotes that will blow your expectations!
Cenote Zapote _ Cenote Zapote must be the world’s weirdest dive site. The cenote is best known for the geological formations found beneath the waters of the cenote. These stalactite formations developed for more than 11,000 years since the time that the cenote was submerged. It is known as the world’s weirdest dive site because the surface is nothing quite like what you will find underwater. The notable Hell’s Bells is the most popular rock formation you will encounter. The opening of the sinkhole from above is nothing like the size and depth of the Cenote Zapote. Once you dive, it opens up into a massive underwater cavern.
Cenote 7 bocas _ Sieta Bocas translated means the ‘Seven Mouths’. The cenote is named for the seven openings which are all connected by the cavern area underneath the roof. For diving enthusiasts, Cenote Siete Bocas is a great destination to go. But this dive site is limited only for advanced level divers. Cenote Siete Bocas is often called cenote “Milky Way” by those who have dived the site. The reason for this name is the gigantic Hydrosulfide cloud that appears in the water. Seven light beams enter through the roof and on a sunny day you can expect one amazing light show during your dive.
Cenote Maravilla _ Heaven for photographers and free divers, the cenote is a sinkhole with the shape of a bell, where the entrance is a hole in the middle of the top. The really thick sulfur cloud offers views that look from another planet… When the sun is high, it has one tremendous beam of bluish-green light penetrating the depths from the single hole in the cavern ceiling. Close to this cloud, you can observe the gorgeous living stalactites, the biothemes often called “Hell’s bells”. Those mysterious rock formations are alive and grow underwater thanks to very special endemic bacteria. Level required is Advanced Open Water!
Puerto Morelos Dive Shops
If you want to experience the best diving in Puerto Morelos then you need to go with the best scuba diving company in Puerto Morelos. Keep in mind that, in general, the biggest companies with the flashy website and huge dive shop aren’t always the best companies to go with especially where our oceans are concerned. So here are our recommendations:
1 - OMDELFIN
The best dive shop if you are diving in Puerto Morelos if you are looking for 5 * service, good gears, local vibes and fun! The team of Omdelfin is a good cocktail of french and mexican energy, always happy and ready to share their passion with you. OMDELFIN offers all type of dives and PADI Certification and the dive shop is ideally located close to the beach inside the hotel Hacienda Morelos.
2 - DIVE WITH RUBEN Puerto Morelos
A family owned scuba diving business that was founded in Puerto Morelos in 2010. They keep their dive groups small and to offer an experience this amazing adventure to the divers. They have slightly higher rates and the shop always looks busy. However, they have perfect maintained scuba gears and excellent dive services!
3 - AQUANAUTS Puerto Morelos
In operation for over 12 years, they are the oldest continuously owned, family run dive shop in the town of Puerto Morelos. PADI Dive Resort and an SSI Dive Resort, they trully are committed to the conservation of the local reefs, preserving them for future generations. Offering dive trips to cenotes and to all the amazing dive sites of Puerto Morelos reefs. Excellent team but it seems that some of the diving gears are a bit overdue!!! Just double check it to make sure to enjoy your dive!
Book your trip
Are you ready to book your trip? .Here are the websites you can use to book your trip, get inspired with the best things to do in your destinations and travel smarter.
- Kiwi.com– A great website to book your flights. It has good airfares but you need to search regulaly as the prices are constantly changing
- Booking.com – The best website to book your accommodation, you can book and cancel free up until a certain point, especially when your plans are forever changing. It’s easy to use and has one of the widest selections.
- Airbnb – You can get some really nice places to stay here. If you don’t have an account and you click on this link then you will get $36 off your first booking.
- Hotel.com – Huge choice of hotels with free cancellation up until a certain point. It’s easy to use and has one of the widest selections.
- Agoda – Agoda is very good if you are searching hotels, resorts, houses. They always have attractive promotions.
- Get your Guide – It is a platform where you will find tours and excurtions in Cozumel and every part of the world.
- Xcaret Group – Xcaret Group is the most famous theme park in the Riviera Maya. If you visit Cancun, check their prices here to get good discounts.
- Viator – If you need to find inspiration about things to do in Cozumel, check on Viator to see the tours they offer for diving and other activities
- Rental Cars – Looking to rent a. car while you are away? I always book through Rental Cars as they do a search of all of the big sites and find the best deals.
- Yacht Rental – If you are thinking of spending time in a paradise beach destination with friends or family, this is a good option to enjoy the beach life.
- Sailing Trip – For cruising holidays, book a sailing trip, they have many trip destinations, lehghts and standing.
- Dive the World – If you are a diver, book a diving trip with them. They have dive packages everywhere in the world with very attractive prices.