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The Scuba Divers guide to

Finding the perfect Liveaboard in Mexico

Map of Mexico

Best time to go

Diving in Mexico is good all year round. The best times depend on the presence of marine life. From November to May it's best to dive in Socorro and August to October are the best months for diving in Guadalupe.


How divers rate us:

Mexico has two coasts, which are home to some incredible underwater environments. Whether you choose to dive the Pacific, with its kelp forests, the reefs of the Sea of Cortez, the wrecks of the Caribbean or the Yucatan Peninsula, you will never fall short of things to see around Mexico. Mexico is home to many pelagic breeding grounds, making it a divers paradise.

We'll help you find the perfect Liveaboard trip, that suits your needs:

It's difficult to choose wich liveaboard that will suit your needs and how to find the best price on that boat.

So we've gathered the best boats and made it possible to compare prices across all the different booking platforms. This way, you'll get the best boat for your needs at the best price.

Start by sorting the boats after your budget, and find a liveaboard that fits your budget and your needs:

Sort the liveaboards based on your needs

We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Quino el Guardian :

Average price is US$ 268 per day

Our recommendations:

~ or ~

Year built:2015
Max divers16
InternetNo
NitroxYes ($)
Rental equip.Yes ($)
Camera stationYes
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Quino el Guardian was built in 1980 and renovated in 2015. It was established because of a need for research, investigation and education ships in the area. The aim is to accommodate scuba divers and scientific researchers in the region. The liveaboard has a length of 24 meters/82 feet and can house up to 16 guests and there is extra space for 2 group leaders in the crew quarters. The Quino el Guardian can reach a maximum speed of 10 knots and a cruising speed of 7.5 knots. It is a brilliant liveaboard that mixes scuba diving with scientific research.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Nautilus Belle Amie :

Average price is US$ 240 per day

Our recommendations:

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Year built:2018
Max divers32
InternetYes ($)
NitroxYes ($)
Rental equip.Yes ($)
Camera stationYes
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Nautilus Bele Amie was built in 2005 and renovated in 2018. The liveaboard has a length of 44 meters/147 feet and can accommodate 30 guests. The guests will have a choice of 17 cabins that have en-suite bathrooms and air-conditioning. The liveaboard has a soundproofed design ensuring you always sleep soundly. What’s more, you will experience the best cage diving experiences while on this liveaboard.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the MV Horizon :

Average price is US$ 515 per day

Our recommendations:

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Year built:1971
Max divers16
InternetNo
NitroxNo
Rental equip.Yes (free)
Camera stationNo
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The MV Horizon was built in 1971 and has been cruising Guadalupe Islands since 2000. It can accommodate up to 16 guests in 8 air-conditioned cabins. The liveaboard is well equipped to handle marine expeditions. They cover everything from acoustic deployment, benthic towing, marine aquatic species studies and long term tracking. Moreover, they also do scuba diving as well as cage diving where you can get close to great white sharks.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Nautilus Explorer :

Average price is US$ 240 per day

Our recommendations:

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Year built:2015
Max divers25
InternetNo
NitroxYes ($)
Rental equip.Yes ($)
Camera stationYes
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Nautilus Explorer was built in 2000 and renovated in 2015 to its pristine condition it is in now. It has a length of 40 meters/132 feet long and can house 25 guests in 13 great cabins that are built for comfort. It has a cruising speed of 11-12 mph. This is the ideal liveaboard for great cage diving adventures that will take you to Guadalupe and Socorro Island.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Nautilus Gallant Lady :

Average price is US$ 374 per day

Our recommendations:

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Year built:N/A
Max divers12
InternetNo
NitroxYes ($)
Rental equip.Yes ($)
Camera stationYes
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Nautilus Gallant Lady has a length of 35 meters/116 feet and accommodates up to 12 guests. The guests will be treated to 6 large cabins that are situated on the lower and main decks. The sun deck and Jacuzzi will be the perfect place to unwind between dives. However, the main attraction is the cage diving that the Nautilus Gallant Lady brings to the table. You will be able to get up and close with the great white sharks in the area and other marine life. A great liveaboard for all-year diving experiences.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Socorro Vortex :

Average price is US$ 584 per day

Our recommendations:

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Year built:2019
Max divers14
InternetYes (free)
NitroxYes (free)
Rental equip.Yes ($)
Camera stationYes
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Socorro Vortex was once a Canadian coastguard vessel that was built for exploration and the deep blue still. Since its redesign, it is now solely used for liveaboard cruising and scuba diving trips all around Mexico. The Socorro Vortex has a luxurious cabin and is fitted with the latest modern amenities that will make your stay more safe and comfortable. You can also go dive into the submarine for the opportunity to explore marine life more thoroughly.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Socoro Aggressor :

Average price is US$ 399 per day

Our recommendations:

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Year built:2006
Max divers26
InternetNo
NitroxYes ($)
Rental equip.Yes ($)
Camera stationYes
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Socorro Aggressor was built in 2006 and refurbished in 2018. The pristine liveaboard allows you to do cage diving with great white sharks. The Socorro Aggressor reaches a top speed of 12 knots and a cruising speed of 10 knots. The length of the boat is 41 meters/135 feet and has 13 beautiful cabins that can accommodate 26 guests. The food is deliciously prepared by an excellent chef. There are also snacks offered throughout the day and after dive excursions.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Nautilus Under Sea :

Average price is US$ 236 per day

Our recommendations:

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Year built:2016
Max divers19
InternetYes ($)
NitroxYes ($)
Rental equip.Yes ($)
Camera stationYes
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Nautilus Under Sea was built way back in 1968 and renovated in 2016. The liveaboard has a length of 32 meters/105 feet long and accommodates up to 19 guests. The guest will have their choice of 9 en-suite, air-conditioned cabins. The liveaboard will take you on trips to Socorro Island and Guadalupe where they can go cage diving among great white sharks. This is an exceptional liveaboard tailored for the adventurous spirit.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Safari Endeavour :

Our recommendations:

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Year built:2012
Max divers84
InternetNo
NitroxNo
Rental equip.No
Camera stationNo
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Safari Endeavour is a vessel for adventuring and finding fun out of outdoor activities. Appreciating the beauty of nature is one thing you can do while onboard. This cruise ship defines luxury in a different approach. Its size is one thing, but the overall interior design makes it entirely different from the others. The Safari Endeavour is a 4-decker cruiser ship that has 42 cabins. These cabins can accommodate a total of 84 guests. These people are taken care of by 34 crew members hired to ensure that all the guests have a good time. Amenities, fine-dining, and drinks are also available onboard, so there’s no need for stopovers and docking just to get these needs.

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We've done all the work for you and found the best prices on the Rocio del Mar :

Average price is US$ 329 per day

Our recommendations:

~ or ~

Year built:2008
Max divers20
InternetNo
NitroxYes ($)
Rental equip.Yes ($)
Camera stationYes
Min. logged divesNo minimum
AirconYes

The Rocio Del Mar welcomes you to its accommodating wide decks, perfect for approx. 20 guests. Its ability to host lots of people easily puts it in the top spot for groups and family picks. Inside the cruiser there are 10 premium rooms that are equally spread across the two decks. The Rocio Del Mar has also a second deck dedicated for entertainment and wellness. BBQ parties are happening on this side of the boat, particularly on the sun deck. The rich seas of Mexico allowed the management to create 3 different itineraries for different types of groups. These itineraries are sure to visit different places that are popular when it comes to water-based adventures in Mexico.

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There are two main liveaboard destinations when visiting Mexico and they are certainly not for the faint-hearted.

Socorro Island

The Revillagigedo Islands are found 390km off the Baja Peninsula and consist of 4 main islands that offer some of the best diving found off the shores of Mexico. The most famous and well visited is Socorro Island. It is only accessible by liveaboard and they leave from the port in Cabo San Lucas. It takes roughly 24 hours to get to Socorro Island from mainland Mexico. These liveaboards spend up to a week around these islands, with 3+ dives a day.

Guadalupe Island

If you’re an adrenaline junkie, who needs to be in the throws of adventure, then Guadalupe is the place for you. It is one of the top places to cage dive with great white sharks. Most of the diving in this area is conducted within cages, however, if you are a qualified diver, then some liveaboard companies do allow you to swim cageless.

Depending on which dive safari you choose to visit Guadalupe Island, you can have a couple of different diving cages to choose from. Some are very exposed, with only a handrail between you and the beasts of the sea. Other cages are horizontal and can come equipped with a motor, allowing you to move through the water.

Information to know about liveaboard diving in Mexico

  • Around Socorro Island, currents can be strong and unpredictable, so these liveaboards are for advanced divers only.
  • Due to the biosphere regulations around Socorro Island, divers are not allowed to use lights, gloves or knives under the water. Camera lights are allowed.
  • Make sure you plan your dive safari trip to Socorro Island in advance as it is sometimes shut due to military action on the island.
  • Pelagic species are found around Socorro Island all year round, however, the best time to visit is between the months of November through to May.
  • From November to May is when surface conditions are great. Additionally, the weather above the surface is warm, sunny with the occasional shower.
  • Manta rays are an awesome sight during this time and you’ll have more of a chance to see whale sharks around these months. You may even get to see the thousands of humpback whales that use the surrounding area as breeding and calving area.
  • Sadly, the only downside to diving Socorro Island at this time is the huge plankton blooms, which hinder visibility.
  • This time of year is peak season for both divers as well as tourists to Mexico, so be aware that prices do increase unless you book well in advance.
  • From the months of June through to October, is the offseason for tourists and prices drop dramatically. The sea becomes too rough and pelagics are often not drawn to the area due to much warmer water temperatures.
  • If you’re planning a liveaboard trip to Guadalupe Island to cage dive, these can be done without any kind of qualifications. If you are not a diver, you will be required to use a hookah system to breathe under the water, and the cage will stay at the surface. However, if you are a diver, then you’ll use full scuba gear and the cage can go down to 10m below the surface.
  • Chumming or feeding the sharks is actually illegal around Guadalupe Island. However, this law is rarely enforced and some liveaboards still use food to attract great whites.
  • The best time to visit Guadalupe Island is between August through to October. However, water temperatures are usually at their coldest, ranging from 19C/66F to22C/70F. These are the perfect conditions for great white shark sightings.
  • If you were hoping to dive around Socorro Island around November to July, and then catch a liveaboard to Guadalupe Island, the, unfortunately, this is not possible. Liveaboards do not travel to this top dive site at this time of year.
  • Due to currents around these islands, some divers like to use a reef hook, however, they are prohibited within protected areas around Mexico.
  • There is a 16% tax imposed if you’re diving in Mexico.
  • Getting to Socorro Island requires you to fly into Cabo San Lucas. From there, you’ll need to catch your liveaboard that will take the 24hour trip to Socorro. Depending on what time of year you choose to dive here, the weather can be quite rough, especially on the long journey.
  • Getting to Guadalupe Island requires a flight to San Diego, California or Baja California, where you can get your liveaboard. The journey from there is dependant on rough seas however it can take anywhere from 18 to 22 hours. If you take a liveaboard from San Diego, then you will have to go through the Mexican border control before continuing on to Guadalupe Island.
  • The language spoken in Mexico is Spanish however they do speak English as well.
  • The currency used in Mexico is the Mexican Peso, where there is 19.90MXN to 1USD.

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