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Socorro Islands

Schooling hammerheads, humpback whales and huge oceanic mantas

The Socorro Islands are a group of four volcanic islands, located in the eastern Pacific Ocean. These isolated islands are approximately 250 miles off Cabo San Lucas, at the southern tip of the Baja peninsula, and can only be reached by liveaboard, with a journey time of approximately 24 hours each way. 

Often known as the ‘Mexican Galapagos’, these rugged and remote islands offer exhilarating and adventurous diving with big animal encounters. There are resident pods of playful dolphins and at least 10 varieties of shark – including schooling scalloped hammerheads, Galápagos sharks, silkies and whale sharks. Also on the wildlife calendar are migrations of humpback whales, coming in to the islands between January and March.

But of all the animals here, it is the huge Pacific Manta Rays that divers flock here to see. These graceful animals can reach a wing span of over 6m and they are famous for being some of the most inquisitive and playful mantas to be found anywhere.

How to get there

Located at the southern-most tip of Baja Peninsula, Mexico, are the two towns of Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo; collectively known as ‘Los Cabos’. Each of these towns have large sea ports and these are where the liveaboards for Socorro trips will be moored.

The gateway into Los Cabos is through San Jose del Cabo’s international airport and from there you can choose to overnight either in San Jose del Cabo itself or in Cabo San Lucas, which is just 40 minutes drive. Once you decide which liveaboard you would like to take for your trip to Socorro, we can help with your accommodation depending on which town the boat is berthed at.

Stay a bit a longer

There is some great diving to be found around the Los Cabos area and southern Sea of Cortez. If it is just a few days diving with sea lions or such that takes your fancy, then this can be easily arranged from Cabo San Lucas.

If you are looking for a bit more, you can consider the option to transfer to La Paz, which takes around two and a half hours by minibus. This area has access to some great Sea of Cortez dive sites and is excellent for playful sea lion colonies and large numbers of whale sharks.

There is also some great bull shark diving off Cabo Pulmo, which is just under a two hour drive from San Jose del Cabo.

If you’d like to add on to your Socorro trip we’ll be happy to guide you and assist with your travel needs.

Quick Guide: Socorro Islands

  • Location: 250 miles south-west of Cabo San Lucas
  • When to go: November to July
  • Average air temp: 25°C – 32°C
  • Average water temp: 23°C – 26°C
  • Recommended diver level: PADI Advanced Open Water (or equivalent) with a minimum 50 dives
  • Type of diving: Pelagics, pinnacles


Mexico by region

Adrenalin-fuelled cage diving with great white sharks

Socorro Islands
Schooling hammerheads, humpback whales and huge oceanic mantas

Sea of Cortez
Playful sea lions, bull sharks and close encounters with whale sharks

Yucatan Peninsular
Cenotes cave diving, reef walls of Cozumel and ancient Mayan ruins

Ready for your next adventure?

Great Escapes Diving Holidays Ltd

Combs Tannery
Tannery Road
IP14 2EN
United Kingdom

Office hours: Mondays to Fridays, 9am - 5pm
Tel: 01449 535010

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