Diving in Coiba National Park
Our Trips for Certified Divers
We run daily dive trips from Santa Catalina. We meet at the dive center for coffee and a briefing at 7.30am after which we take a short walk down to the beach and head out to the national park. The ride to the dive sites takes about one hour and thirty minutes. We do two or three dives a day, depending on what you prefer, and (occasionally) weather conditions and generally return between 3.30pm and 16.00pm. All the dive sites are located in Coiba National Park, which covers a series of beautiful islands, including Coiba, Isla Ranchería, Canales and the area of Contreras. We often stop for a short lunch break at the rangers’ station on Coiba, home to wild monkeys, ñeques (little rodent-like creatures), crocodiles, iguanas and amazing bird life, or on one of the other beautiful beaches found in the park.
What You Can See
As for the underwater world, our local residents include white-tipped reef sharks, turtles, dolphins, eagle rays, devil rays, sting rays, lobsters, sea horses, frog fish, bigeye jacks, blue-fin trevallies, barracudas, moray eels, wahoos, snappers and of course lots of colourful butterflyfish and parrotfish. If there’s plankton around, you might also get lucky and come across whale shark or giant manta. From July to September we often spot humpback whales on the surface as well. Check out our gallery for some photos.
Our dives are planned to last roughly 50 minutes, depending on conditions and air consumption. The depths range from 16 to 24 meters. The diving is suitable for all levels and we adjust our choices of sites to experience, the season, the weather and sea conditions. Currents vary from very mild to pretty strong, each having their advantages and disadvantages. Most of the year we usually enjoy 26 to 30 degree Celsius warm water. However, from late March to the beginning of June water temperatures can range between 18 and 24 degrees Celsius.
The price for two dives $140, three dives $160. In the rainy season the third dive cannot be guaranteed due to weather conditions and our concern for safety. You will be asked to pay the additional $20 when we return from the trip if we were able to do a third dive.
Discounts for day trips: $10 on the second day of diving, $20 on the third and all consecutive days.
Included: equipment (also dive computer), sandwich, fruit and water
Not included: park entrance fees ($20 for foreigners, $5 for panameños and residents, must be paid in cash)
Do you have any questions? Feel free to contact us.