Socorro Giant Manta Ray Dive Liveaboards


Socorro Island is the largest island in the Revillagigedo Archipelago Biosphere Reserve which is famous worldwide for its Giant Manta Rays (Mobula birostris). These gentle marine giants can reach up to 7 metres in span and have become increasingly interactive around divers over the past twenty years.

On these dive liveaboard trips we plan to visit the islands of Socorro, San Benedicto and Roca Partida. With their steep drop offs and upwelling currents, these islands are a magnet for manta rays, sharks and other marine life. The islands are also visited by majestic humpback whales which visit the islands to breed and calve. If you are lucky you may catch sight of them not only above the water but also when diving.

Giant Manta Ray in Socorro - Bob Dobson

Dive liveaboard is the only way to see these islands, not just because you need a self-sufficient floating unit to move between dive sites, but because there are no flights to these islands. To get there, you need to join the boat at Cabo San Lucas on San Jose del Cabo on the Mexican Baja California Peninsula. The 240 mile voyage to the islands is a great marine life opportunity in itself, providing you with a peaceful sense of open ocean wilderness and chances to see whales and dolphins above the water.

The mid ocean sight of Socorro is of a dramatic volcanic mountain standing thousands of metres above the seabed. Its peak is a perfectly shaped cone and the land beneath a combination of hardened lava and sparse but rare vegetation. There is a surprising diversity of life here including endemic plants and species of bird. The only people permitted onto the island are those stationed at the Mexican naval garrison and their families who live on these remote islands with them. Their lives are a far cry from Mexico City.

From Socorro, our next port of call will be either San Benedicto Island or Roca Partida Island. San Benedicto is much smaller than Socorro but attracts a greater variety of pelagic life. Underwater sightings may include tiger sharks, whale sharks and humpback whales - but it is best known as one of the prime locations anywhere to see giant manta rays as they glide gracefully around you at the island's cleaner stations. The island of San Benedicto is still volcanically active and has a large lava delta pushing its way out into the Pacific from the south west part of the island.

Weather dependent, we may also visit the tiny island of Roca Partida. It is only 92m from end to end but harbours a large variety of shark species including white tip sharks, Galapagos sharks, silky sharks, giant manta rays and even an occasional whale shark. You may also encounter some of the playful bottle nosed dolphins that inhabit the area as well as migrating humpback whales. At a depth of 12 metres there are underwater caves where you can find groups of sleeping white tip reef sharks.

If you have time to see more of Mexico or other parts of Latin America such as Belize, Costa Rica, Panama and the Galapagos, Aqua-Firma is a specialist at helping you to do this. Please Contact Us to discuss the possibilities.

Diving Experience

Beginner to intermediate. All dives will be assisted by a divemaster. Skiff pick-ups will be available on all dives. Descent and ascent line provided on all dives except at Roca Partida due to the extreme depth.

Itinerary

Itinerary Notes

These are draft itineraries for each of the liveaboard options, which may be subject to change without notice. We offer airport transfers and a small range of carefully chosen hotels and larger resorts in Los Cabos (San Jose del Cabo, Cabo San Lucas and the beachfront inbetween which is known as the Touristic Corridor) for both before and after your voyage.

We strongly recommend that you plan to arrive 2 days before your liveaboard departs to mitigate against potential flight and luggage delays. You can fly home on the day of disembarkation, but please plan on a late afternoon / evening flight to mitigate against potential delays in crossing back from the Socorro Islands.

The main areas that you will plan to visit are:

San Benedicto Island
San Benedicto Island is the third largest in the Revilla Gigedo group at about 2.6 miles long. It has two prominent peaks, one that is very obviously a volcanic crater. The area is renowned for its schooling hammerhead sharks, silver tip, silky, Galapagos and even occasionally Tiger sharks. Its most rewarding encounters can be with the Giant Pacific Manta Rays (Manta birostris).

One of the best dive sites here is “the Boiler”, a large pinnacle that reaches from the depths to within several feet of the surface. It is small enough to swim around several times in one dive, but is large enough to be a favourite gathering point, attracting marine life from miles around. What makes this site so magical is the congregation of very friendly Giant Pacific Mantas. They have been known to greet divers even before they get into the water and swim with you all day.

Roca Partida
Roca Partida is a small pinnacle located west of Socorro and San Benedicto. This stony pillar is known to attract pelagics and large schools of jacks and tuna. Beneath the surface the wall drops straight down to deep water. There are many shelves and ridges that give refuge to the animals that hide there.

Depending on the current, it is possible to swim around the pinnacle several times in the course of one dive. Other times divers prefer to just hang out in one area and watch the pelagics swim by. Guests have spotted schools of hammerheads, whitetip sharks, Galapagos sharks, silky sharks, giant manta rays, dolphins, an occasional whaleshark and even humpback whales here.

Socorro Island
Socorro is about 30 miles south of San Benedicto. The island is about 10 miles by 9 miles in size and is home to the Mexican Naval Station since 1957 where you will check-in before diving. In the centre of the island rises volcanic Mt. Evermann, who’s top is 1130 meters above sea level. Dive sites here include the Aquarium, Punta Tosca and Cabo Pearce.

Please note that any liveaboard voyage may be subject to change without notice according to sea conditions, national park rules, military exercises which may put some of the dive sites off limits, or improvements in response to opportunities to see the best marine life.

Sample 9 Day Itinerary (Socorro Aggressor)

Day 1: Embarkation in Cabo San Lucas

You will be collected from a local host hotel this morning and will be transferred to the port for embarkation. You will then head out, beginning your 24 hour crossing to the Socorro Islands.

Day 2: Arrive in the Socorro Islands

You will plan to arrive in the Socorro Islands this morning to begin diving! 2-3 dives are planned today depending on your arrival time.

Day 3 - 6: Diving in the Socorro Islands

You will spend these days diving around Socorro, San Benedicto and Roca Partida. Up to 4 dives are planned per day depending on conditions.

Day 7: Diving & Head back to Los Cabos

You will make up to 4 dives today before leaving the Socorro Islands to return back to Los Cabos.

Day 8: At Sea

You will spend today crossing back to Los Cabos, aiming to arrive at approx. 8pm this evening

Day 9: Disembarkation in Cabo San Lucas

You will disembark this morning after breakfast. A transfer can be provided back to San Jose del Cabo Airport.

Sample 10 Day Itinerary (Rocio del Mar)

Day 1: Embarkation in San Jose del Cabo

You will make your own way to the San Jose del Cabo marina this afternoon for embarkation at approx. 5pm

Day 2: At Sea

You will spend today crossing to the Socorro Islands, aiming to arrive in the evening / overnight ready to begin diving the next day

Days 3 - 7: Diving in the Socorro Islands

You will spend these days diving around Socorro, San Benedicto and Roca Partida. Your schedule will depend on local conditions, but you will aim to follow this plan:

Day 3: up to 4 dives at San Benedicto
Day 4: up to 3 dives at Roca Partida
Day 5: up to 3 dives at Roca Partida
Day 6: up to 3 dives at Socorro Island
Day 7: up to 4 dives at Socorro Island

Day 8: Diving & Head Back to Los Cabos

You will make up to 4 dives today at San Benedicto before leaving the Socorro Islands to return back to Los Cabos.

Day 9: At Sea

You will spend today crossing back to Los Cabos, aiming to arrive this evening.

Day 10: Disembarkation in San Jose del Cabo

You will disembark this morning after breakfast. The crew can assist in booking taxis for onward or airport transfers.

Sample 9 Day Itinerary (Solmar V)

Day 1: Embarkation in Cabo San Lucas

You will be collected from a local host hotel in the early afternoon and will be transferred to the port for embarkation. You will then head out, beginning your 24 hour crossing to the Socorro Islands.

Day 2: Arrive in the Socorro Islands

You will plan to arrive in the Socorro Islands today and make your first dive at San Benedicto

Days 3 - 6: Diving in the Socorro Islands

You will spend these days diving around Socorro, San Benedicto and Roca Partida. Your schedule will depend on local conditions, but you will aim to follow this plan:

Day 3: up to 4 dives at San Benedicto
Day 4: up to 3 dives at Roca Partida
Day 5: up to 3 dives at Roca Partida
Day 6: up to 4 dives at Socorro Island

Day 7: Diving & Head back to Los Cabos

You will make up to 4 dives at San Benedicto today before leaving the Socorro Islands to return back to Los Cabos.

Day 8: At Sea

You will spend today crossing back to Los Cabos, aiming to arrive in the late evening

Day 9: Disembarkation in Cabo San Lucas

You will disembark this morning after breakfast. The crew can assist in booking taxis for onward or airport transfers.

Sample 9 Day Itinerary (Nautilus)

Day 1: Embarkation in Cabo San Lucas

You will make your own way to the Cabo San Lucas marina this afternoon for embarkation at approx. 8pm

Day 2: At Sea

You will spend today crossing to the Socorro Islands, aiming to arrive in the evening / overnight ready to begin diving the next day

Days 3 - 7: Diving in the Socorro Islands

You will spend these days diving around Socorro, San Benedicto and Roca Partida. Your schedule will depend on local conditions, but you will aim to follow this plan:

Day 3: up to 4 dives at San Benedicto
Day 4: up to 3 dives at Socorro Island + night snorkel
Day 5: up to 4 dives at Socorro Island
Day 6: up to 4 dives at Roca Partida
Day 7: final dives at Roca Partida

Day 8: At Sea

You will spend today crossing back to Los Cabos, aiming to arrive this evening.

Day 9: Disembarkation in Cabo San Lucas

You will disembark this morning after breakfast. The crew can assist in booking taxis for onward or airport transfers.

Dates

Enquire / Book 02 Nov 2022 - 04 Jan 2023 - from US$ 3,799

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 & 11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Solmar V

Enquire / Book 04 Nov 2022 - 05 Jan 2023 - from US$ 3,995

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (10 Days)
Weekly departures available
Rocio del Mar

Enquire / Book 22 Nov 2022 - 05 Jan 2023 - from US$ 3,695

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 Days)
Weekly departures available
Socorro Aggressor

Enquire / Book 08 Dec 2022 - 05 Jan 2023 - from US$ 3,350

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 Days)
Weekly departures available
Nautilus Belle Amie

Enquire / Book 21 Dec 2022 - 06 Jan 2023 - from US$ 3,350

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 Days)
Weekly departures available
Nautilus Under Sea

Enquire / Book 04 Jan - 29 Jun 2023 - from US$ 3,350

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 &11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Nautilus Explorer

Enquire / Book 05 Jan - 07 Jun 2023 - from US$ 3,695

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 Days)
Weekly departures available
Socorro Aggressor

Enquire / Book 05 Jan - 11 Jun 2023 - from US$ 4,199

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 & 11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Solmar V

Enquire / Book 05 Jan - 20 Jun 2023 - from US$ 3,350

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 &11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Nautilus Belle Amie

Enquire / Book 06 Jan - 25 May 2023 - from US$ 4,095

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (10 Days)
Weekly departures available
Rocio del Mar

Enquire / Book 22 Jan - 05 Jun 2023 - from US$ 3,350

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 &11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Nautilus Under Sea

Enquire / Book 04 Nov 2023 - 05 Jan 2024 - from US$ 4,095

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (10 Days)
Weekly departures available
Rocio del Mar

Enquire / Book 05 Nov 2023 - 05 Jan 2024 - from US$ 4,199

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 & 11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Solmar V

Enquire / Book 25 Nov 2023 - 08 Jan 2024 - from US$ 3,695

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 Days)
Weekly departures available
Socorro Aggressor

Enquire / Book 03 Jan - 13 Apr 2024 - from US$ 3,565

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 &10 Days)
Weekly departures available
Nautilus Under Sea

Enquire / Book 06 Jan - 03 Jun 2024 - from US$ 4,095

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (10 Days)
Weekly departures available
Rocio del Mar

Enquire / Book 07 Jan - 07 Jul 2024 - from US$ 3,565

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 Days)
Weekly departures available
Nautilus Explorer

Enquire / Book 08 Jan - 03 Jun 2024 - from US$ 4,199

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 & 11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Solmar V

Enquire / Book 08 Jan - 13 Jun 2024 - from US$ 3,695

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 Days)
Weekly departures available
Socorro Aggressor

Enquire / Book 12 Jan - 20 Jun 2024 - from US$ 3,565

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 &11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Nautilus Belle Amie

Enquire / Book 01 Nov 2024 - 05 Jan 2025 - from US$ 4,095

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (10 Days)
Weekly departures available
Rocio del Mar

Enquire / Book 05 Nov 2024 - 06 Jan 2025 - from US$ 4,199

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 & 11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Solmar V

Enquire / Book 20 Nov 2024 - 03 Jan 2025 - from US$ 3,695

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 Days)
Weekly departures available
Socorro Aggressor

Enquire / Book 08 Jan - 22 May 2025 - from US$ 4,599

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 & 11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Solmar V

Enquire / Book 03 Nov 2025 - 06 Jan 2026 - from US$ 4,599

Los Cabos - Los Cabos (9 & 11 Days)
Weekly departures available
Solmar V

Our prices include:
- Compressed air tanks, weights & weight belts
- 16% local Mexican taxes*
- Dive master service
- All meals and snacks onboard
- Selected alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks onboard*
- Standard local transfers in Los Cabos*

*depending on your chosen yacht. Please contact us for details

Prices exclude
-
Single supplements
- Seasonal supplements
- International and domestic flights
- Insurance
- Equipment rentals
- Nitrox fills
- Certification or specialty courses
- Dinner on final evening
- Crew tips
- Fuel surcharges may be applied onboard
- Port fees apply on some boats ($65 payable locally)
- National Park Fees

National Park Fees of $84 per diving day** are not included in your liveaboard price and must be paid in advance (on your invoice) or by cash / credit card before embarkation depending on your chosen yacht.

**this fee may be subject to change without notice

Activity Level: Medium.

International flights and Extensions
As a fully ATOL and ABTOT bonded company, we can arrange your international flights, airport transfers and any additional accommodation in Mexico. As a specialist in tailor made travel we can offer extensions in Mexico, Latin America or Antarctica! Please Contact Us to discuss.


 

  • Diving with Giant Manta Ray in Socorro - Bob Dobson
  • White Tip Reef Shark in Socorro - Bob Dobson
  • Diving with Humpback Whale & Calf in Socorro - Shaowen Lin
  • Scuba Diving with Giant Manta Rays in Socorro
  • Diving with Sharks at Roca Partida, Socorro Islands
  • Diving with Giant Manta Rays in Socorro Islands - Bob Dobson
  • Diving with Sharks in Socorro Islands, Mexico
  • Diving with Giant Manta Ray at San Benedicto - Bob Dobson
  • Dolphins in Socorro Islands

Trip reviews - Mexico

Socorro Islands & Los Cabos Travel Guide

  • Humpback Whale & Calf in Socorro Islands
  • Moray Eel in Socorro Islands - Bob Dobson
  • Giant Manta Ray in Socorro Islands - Bob Dobson
  • White Tip Reef Shark in Socorro - Bob Dobson
  • Diving with Giant Manta Ray at San Benedicto Island - Bob Dobson
  • Sleeping White Tip Reef Sharks - Bob Dobson
  • Dolphins in the Socorro Islands
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