Scuba Diving Guadalupe Island
Guadalupe Island, Mexico is now considered the world’s best location for viewing, photography and video of great white sharks.
Guadalupe Island (Isla Guadalupe) is a volcanic island located 150 statute miles off the west coast of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula and about 250 miles southwest of Ensenada. The island is 35 km long and 9.5 km wide. The climate is warm and dry and gets most its precipitation during the winter months.
The rough, rugged landscape of Guadalupe Island was formed from two ancient volcanoes and a volcanic ridge that rises to over 4,000 feet above sea level.
The island is inhabited by a handful of fishermen from a fishing cooperative who live in a small camp on the west side of the island. There is also said to be an abandoned fishing community on the east side of the island. They mainly fish for abalone, lobster and sea cucumbers. There is a small airport located in the center of the island that is seldom used.
SCUBA DIVING GUADALUPE ISLAND
Trips to Guadalupe are made to see Great White Sharks. The diving is done in and sometimes around cages to protect the divers from the sharks. Air is surface supplied, so no tanks or BCs are used. However, the water is quite chilly, and thermal protection is typical.
The trips are on liveaboard dive vessels, usually carrying 10 to 25 passengers on 5 to 7 day trips. Typical departure points are Ensenada, Mexico and San Diego, USA.
HIGHLIGHT DIVE AREAS
Guadalupe Island (Mexico) is the top destination for great white shark encounters. This small volcanic island located in the Pacific 240 kilometers (150 miles) off the west coast of Mexico’s Baja California peninsula outperforms both South Africa and Australia with shark-seeing consistency and watching conditions. Only Guadalupe Island can boast shark viewing in beautiful clear blue water with 125 – 150 foot visibility. One of the dive boat operators recently counted 108 great white sharks in the bay where they stage their submersible cage diving operations.
DING SEASON: Year-round, however, Great White Shark season is July to November
VISIBILITY: Visibility during the Great White Shark season averages 125-150 feet (38-45m)
WATER TEMPERATURE: Water temperature runs between 65-70F (18-21C).
WEATHER: The island has two major climate zones. However, the climate at sea level during the time that great white sharks are there has a mean temperature between 64 and 72 F (18 and 22 C).
SKILL LEVEL: Diving with the Great White Sharks is done from cages with surface supplied regulators. A dive certification is not required.
MARINE LIFE: Great White Sharks and seals on occasion.
More Information on Mexico
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