Diving in Colombia

With the world’s third largest coral reef at San Andres and Providencia, the World Heritage site of Malpelo, 3.000 km of coastline between the clear, calm waters of the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific coast, with some of the most biodiverse wildlife in the world, Colombia is a privileged destination for scuba diving enthusiasts!

Drop-offs, caves, wrecks, tunnels, colorful reefs, some of the most abundant flora and fauna on the planet, Colombia is home to many beautiful underwater landscapes.

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Diving in Colombia: Summary

Practical information

Let’s start by giving you some practical information that will surely interest you before you think about scuba diving in Colombia! What’s the visibility underwater, what level do you need, what’s the water temperature, what kind of underwater fauna can you see?

Visibility

Whether in the Caribbean or the Pacific, visibility varies from 15 to 30 meters depending on the dive site.

Level

Scuba diving in Colombia is accessible to all levels. Each spot has its own specificities. Beginners can take their first dive or their PADI Open Water diploma, while expert divers will find exceptional dive sites to indulge their passion.

Water temperature

In Colombia, located at the equator, water temperature is generally warm. Currents and depths can, of course, vary the temperature. The average surface temperature is 28°C.

Marine life

Biodiversity is one of Colombia’s great strengths. It’s the same for the underwater world, and if you’re lucky, you’ll be able to see dolphins, ferocious sharks, whale sharks, hammerhead sharks, manta rays, humpback whales, sea turtles, angelfish, lionfish, surgeonfish, butterflyfish, moray eels of all kinds, barracuda, tuna, sardines, reef fish and more.

Where to dive on the Caribbean coast

DIVING IN COLOMBIA

Diving in Colombia

It’s fair to say that every tourist destination on the Caribbean coast has one or more diving centers where you can indulge your desire to discover the seabed. We’ve been lucky enough to be able to dive in a number of different places, and the excitement is always there.

From Capurgana to Santa Marta, you’ll find more or less the same characteristics, with crystal-clear, warm waters (27°C), excellent visibility of up to 30 m and a majority of very accessible sites. There are dive sites for all levels, from 5 m to 40 m depth.

You’ll be able to observe the emblematic species of the Caribbean Sea: reef fish, moray eels, octopus, lobster, seahorses… but also the fish you’ll find on your plate: pargo, mojarra, robalo… and if you’re very lucky, you’ll be able to observe more impressive specimens such as groupers, nurse sharks, cat sharks, leopard rays and sea turtles.

Scuba diving in Santa Marta (Taganga)

The best seasons for diving on the Caribbean coast

Diving in Colombia

Here’s a summary of the best seasons for diving in Colombia’s Caribbean region.

While the water is warm all year round, there are months when visibility is better, others when currents and swell are more or less important, and certain seasons when marine fauna is more abundant.

Best season for diving in Santa Marta

Best visibility

Calm sea

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Best season for diving in San Andres and Providencia

Turtles

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Best season for diving in Cartagena

Calm sea

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

Where to dive on the Pacific coast

diving in Colombia

Diving in Colombia
credit: Dive CUE

Colombia’s Pacific coast is far less developed as a tourist destination than its Caribbean sister. Yet the diving spots in the Pacific Ocean are among the most famous in the world for specialists.

It’s on the Pacific coast that marine biodiversity is richest and most impressive. While you’ll need a lot of luck to catch a glimpse of a turtle or a shark in the Caribbean, the Pacific coast is a completely different story! You’ll be able to observe the most impressive marine species imaginable: sea turtles, humpback whales, numerous species of shark, huge shoals of fish, etc., etc., etc.

It’s what’s known as a “hot spot”, in other words, one of the most biodiverse placesin the world. Quite simply… excuse the pun… voilà voilà.

Scuba diving on the Pacific coast

Whale-watching in Colombia travel guide: where to see humpback whales in the pacific coast

The best seasons for diving on the Pacific coast

Where to dive in Colombia

The Pacific Ocean is a great playground for divers, and each season is enchanted by the presence of different marine fauna. Here’s a summary of the best seasons for scuba diving on Colombia’s Pacific coast

Best visibility

Whale sharks

Sardines

Humpback whales

J

F

M

A

M

J

J

A

S

O

N

D

The best diving spots in Colombia

Where to dive in Colombia

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