Mexico's main diving regions can all deliver the spectacular, but do so in their own distinct ways. Socorro Island's manta magic, Yucatan's crystal-clear cenotes and Baja California's whale watching are all impressive in their own right, and you could easily put together an argument for any one of them being home to the best diving in Mexico. Ultimately, which of these impressive destinations has the best diving will come down to you, as will which marine creatures feature most prominently on your bucket list. But with tropical reefs, bull sharks and cenotes on one coast and mantas, pelagics and a selection of cetaceans on the other, you can be sure you'll have a memorable Mexican holiday.
While Socorro is famed for its friendly manta ray population, this remote seamount in the Pacific Ocean's Revillagigedo Archipelago also attracts a host of other species of megafauna. The currents can be challenging, but the intrepid diver will be rewarded with sightings of silky sharks, Galapagos sharks, silvertips and dolphins in addition to the giant manta rays that frequent the offshore islands.
If being surrounded by large pelagics floats your boat, you may find Socorro to be your ideal Mexican dive destination. But diving in Socorro is not year-round. Due to its remote location more than 200 miles offshore, the Revillagigedo Archipelago is accessible only by liveaboard, and the calm conditions needed for the crossing occur during the winter months (November through to May). So if you're looking to escape the UK winter, a liveaboard trip to Socorro could be just what the doctor ordered.
Mexico's Caribbean coastline, on the eastern side of the Yucatan Peninsula, is home to the country's most popular tourist destinations. Cancun, Cozumel and Playa del Carmen have been pulling in visitors from across the globe for many a year, and with some of the best diving in Mexico on their doorstep, plenty of divers enjoy the tropical reefs and cenote diving of the Yucatan Peninsula.
Basing yourself in Playa del Carmen puts you in the ideal spot to enjoy the delights of the Yucatan. White-sand beaches, ancient Maya ruins and post-dive piña coladas ensure there's plenty to do when not underwater, while the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef (the second largest barrier reef system in the world) and the Yucatan's famous sinkholes (cenotes) ensure spectacular and varied diving. The cenotes feature exceptionally clear water and mesmerising topography, while dives on the barrier reef afford the chance to dive with bull sharks during the winter months, and mantas and passing whale sharks during the summer.
Baja California Sur
Rugged, rough and remote, the Baja California Peninsula separates the slender Sea of Cortez from the mighty Pacific Ocean. And if your dreams of the best diving in Mexico feature whale sharks, hammerheads, grey whales and sea lions, then it's time to start packing!
The peninsula's southern state of Baja California Sur is home to Cabo Pulmo National Park and the California sea lions of Los Islotes. Cabo Pulmo, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the oldest of only three coral reefs on the west coast of North America, allows dives with bull, mako, silky, blue and hammerhead sharks. The playful sea lions at Los Islotes are always a winner, and the awe-inspiring winter whale watching is surely the icing on the cake.