10 Reasons Why You and I Should go Diving in Cocos Island

Photo courtesy from Undersea Hunter Group

If you are a diver, an adventurous diver for that matter, you don’t want to dive in just a single site during your entire life. Some of us take the weekend off and dive in nearby areas. However, these dive sites are often crowded and may not give you the much needed relaxation. With this, we travel to far-flung areas and explore a pristine environment.

However, choosing a travel destination is not as easy as counting one two three. Our planet, which is composed of 70% water, holds over a thousand dive sites and each of them offers a unique experience. Some of these dives sites can be found in freshwater while majority can be found in the vastness of the marine environment. While considering the fact that each site offers a unique experience, only a few percent of the sites can offer you the Ultimate Diving Experience.

But why Cocos Island? Do you think going to this offshore Costa Rican island allows you to experience ultimate diving? In the meantime, let us set aside the titles and commendations Cocos island has received, like One of the World’s Best Diving Destination and focus on the reasons why you should go diving in this Pacific island paradise.

1. Distress and just dive, dive and dive

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Diving is the main reason why you should go and visit Cocos island. Unlike other diving destination where several aqua-sports may interrupt your underwater hobby, exploring the underwater world of Cocos island will solely fill the hours of your vacation.

Map courtesy from Bill Beards

With over 10 dive sites to explore, your vacation in Cocos island will be filled with underwater action packed with adrenaline-loaded experience. Doing at least three dives in a day will be your usual routine. That is on top of the night dives that you will also be doing in some areas of the coast.

In effect to this series of dive, your nitrogen level (also known as the “feel good gas”) will be optimized inside your body system. As a result, your stress levels will lower down and we guarantee you that this will be changed with positive vibes making you feel good.

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2. Safely Dive with Sharks

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Many have wondered why sharks in Cocos island are relatively in a relax condition and not aggressive despite knowing the fact that they converge here in huge numbers.

Photo courtesy from www.coibadiveexpeditions.com

And not just one type, but several species of sharks in the hundreds. Diving with hundreds of hammerhead sharks is the signature experience of Cocos island. You can interact with other species that goes in huge numbers like Blacktip sharks, Silky sharks, Galapagos sharks, whitetip reef sharks and the highly feared Tiger shark. Cocos island also houses a good population of whalesharks which is considered as the World’s biggest fish.

But this does not mean that you can now play with them in close proximity. Interacting with sharks in a safe distance is highly recommended. Remember, sharks are wild marine creature and anything accidental could happen if you provoke them.

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3. Interact with Massive Fish School of different Types

Photo courtesy from Mission Blue

Aside from sharks, other fish species in Cocos island goes in great numbers. We can safely say that at least they go by the hundreds, if not, thousands.

Photo courtesy from wildencounters.net

If there is one species in Cocos island that could represent the word massive school of fish, then it would be the Bigeye Trevally. Also called as jacks, this medium-size fish tends to converge and concentrate their population in one area. However, as they are a highly mobile species, their simultaneous swimming gives a swirling effect that is comparable to the vortex of a tornado.

Scattering around the entire reef are small-size fish. While traversing along the reef floor, you can see a wide variety of damselfish living in close proximity with branching corals, soldierfish under overhangs and goatfish that constantly wanders the reef. Some of them are even assigned with a role and doesn’t just thrive without doing nothing. For instance, barberfish are responsible for manning the cleaning station where sharks rely on them for a quick clean against body parasites.

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4. Join in a Shallow Water Feast and be surrounded by Sharks, Dolphins, Whales, Seabirds and a Massive School of Small Fish

Photo courtesy from SDI-TDI-ERDI

Have you ever experienced being surrounded by several Apex predators of the Ocean in a single dive? If not, then Cocos island will give you this heart pounding episode.

Photo courtesy from xray-mag.com

The arrival of migrating sardines in Cocos island signals the start of this shallow water feast. Initially scattered in the vast open sea, this small-size fish are being chased by oceanic predators like sharks, dolphins, whales including aerial species such as seabirds. In order for this predators to easily consume this large sardine population, they circle around them creating a wall or barrier. In effect, the small sardines will concentrate themselves in a circular formation called as the baitball. Once this is achieved, the feeding frenzy will start and predators will attack form all direction taking in as much as they can.

Diving in a baitball is not a whole year round experience. So timing is of the essence.

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5. Go Deep-Sea Diving

Photo courtesy from Undersea Hunter Group

The good thing when you go diving in Cocos island is that you can both explore the vibrant reefs of the shallows and the mysterious regions of the deep.

Photo courtesy from oppositelock.kinja.com

Onboard a submersible, you and your partner can go deep-sea diving up to 300 meters (1,000 feet) in an area called Everest. As you start to descend, you will see the marine wildlife that you have already interacted during your scuba diving adventures. Many have appreciated seeing the overall scenery of the reef topography plus the scenic back draft of the surface.

But as you arrive in a zone where light from the sun and the eternal darkness of the deep compete, you will then just realize that you have just arrived at the abyss. From this moment on, the external lights of your deep-sea submersible will start to illuminate. As you go deeper and deeper, you will be surrounded by total darkness and oddly looking creatures will start to appear as they are attracted by the bright lights from your deep-sea submersible. We suggest you bring your own camera where you can possibly see the highly elusive prickly shark, rosy-lipped batfish and the jellynose fish.

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6. Experience Liveaboard for 10-days

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Before you can experience numbers 1 to 5, you need sign-up for a liveaboard cruise to Cocos island. The reason why you need one is that the Costa Rican government has prohibited the construction of any human settlement within the island, regardless of permanent or temporary.

Photo courtesy from Undersea Hunter Group

Although you are limited by the space provided by the vessel, it is still a comfortable living out at sea. This is courtesy from the organized use of space enhanced by its exterior and interior architectural design. Just imagine, you and your partner will have your own air-conditioned cabin that is spacious enough to accommodate your luggage and has its own bathroom. The upper and main decks are the areas that you will spend during meal time where you can dine in their restaurant-inspired dining and have a chit chat with other guest at the main saloon.

But why 10 days? This is the usual number of days being offered by tour companies in going to Cocos island. So, this just means one thing: 10 days of ultimate diving.

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7. Experience Passive Whale and Dolphin Watching

Photo courtesy from Inside Japan Tours

During your 36-hour trip from mainland Costa Rica to Cocos island called as the crossing over, you will have a once in a lifetime opportunity to see the gentle giants of the deep and playful cetaceans of the ocean.

Photo courtesy from Travel Blog

But why passive? Unlike other areas where you need to search and chase these gentle giants for you to have a close glimpse of them. Here in Cocos island, you don’t need to actively search for them. They abound the protected waters of this offshore Costa Rican Island and interacting with them only requires you to go up to the upper deck.

Most guest who have done this experience say that it was pretty amazing especially if you are lucky enough to see the leaping out of humpback whales. Dolphins on the run is another favorite for guest who stands in front of the tip of the vessel where you can almost reach them by the hand. If you are in to nature photography, the crossing over is a perfect way to photograph this marine giants while freely thriving in their natural habitat.

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8. Set Foot on the Island and Re-live the Lives of Famous Pirates and Explorers

Photo courtesy from Undersea Hunter Group

During the course of your 10-day trip in Cocos island, your tour operator will allot a day of visit to the island. You have to take note that this is just a day-tour and you need to be back on board before night falls.

Pres. Franklin D. Roosevelt (age 27) and company during a treasure hunting trip in Cocos island. Photo courtesy from Metal Detecting UK

When you leave the confines of your liveaboard vessel and transfer to a skiff boat that will ferry you to the island, you will start hearing stories of pirates and famous explorers who once visited the island. This story is further confirmed when you arrive at the shore and see stone carvings done by them, like the one made above by Jacques Yves Cousteau. You will also be met by Park Rangers guarding the island and will share their own story of pirates and their looted treasure buried somewhere in the island.

We are sure enough that you will be highly interested once you hear that the treasure has never been found. Yes, we know what you are thinking: finding the treasure yourself. If this is the case, then please do not do so as treasure hunting is now strictly prohibited in the island.

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9. Explore Lush Tropical Rainforest

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Who would ever thought that an offshore island somewhere in the Pacific holds a tropical rainforest that has never been touched by illegal loggers.

Photo courtesy from Undersea Hunter GroupWith just

With just a few kilometers before you arrive in Cocos island during the crossing over, the first impression that you will have is an offshore barren island. But as you come closer, you will realize that the entire island is fully covered with plants and trees. And when you set foot on the island, you will notice that it is not just an ordinary clustering of floral species, but a tropical rainforest. During your day tour to the island, you will hike up following a natural trail. While walking you can hear the humming of birds or the magical sound of lizards, even if you don’t see them. As rain is always persistent in Cocos island, the rainforest is surrounded by numerous virgin waterfalls where the cascading of freshwater will surely rejuvenate your tired muscles.

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10. Meet Serious Divers around the World

Photo courtesy from Undersea Hunter Group

Similar to other diving vacations, you cannot discount the fact that you will be talking to other divers sharing the same passion with yours.

Photo courtesy from Undersea Hunter Group

But here in Cocos island, you will be talking to persons that are serious in scuba diving. You may not necessarily talk about the technicalities of diving where other topics, like marine conservation and protection, can be a good subject to talk about.

Awkwardness to talk to each other is expected during the initial days of your trip. But once you explored the underwater beauty of Cocos island, you will not anymore hesitate to share your experience here in Cocos island, as well as your dive travels around the globe. We guarantee you your being talkative will come out naturally as it is being triggered and hastened by the influx of nitrogen level in your body.

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Lastly, please do not make this 10-day underwater adventure a reason to get out of your problems. Because if you do so, then we guarantee you will temporarily forget about those problems and come back home with a freshened mind giving you ease in solving those difficulties in life.

Remember, going to Cocos island is not an open ticket. You need to have your seat reserved. And for divers like you and I, they are selling like hotcakes.

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Reference

Dive the World: www.dive-the-world.com

Scuba Diving: www.scubadiving.com

Dive Zone: www.divezone.net

Video courtesy from Jean-Marc Thimon

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CY 2019 Schedule of Liveaboard Trips to Cocos Island

Due to high demand of liveaboard trips to Cocos island, as early as this year, we are publishing the CY 2019 trips for you to choose your preferred schedule and prepare for the ultimate diving adventure of your life. Travel Dates Name of Vessel Price (US$) Remarks Jan 2 – 12, 2019 MV Argo 5,295 […]