Diving and snorkelling Isla de Caño Marine Reserve

Diving and snorkelling Isla de Caño Marine Reserve

Eco Experience

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Interact with the pillar(s) below to find out which are highlighted in this eco-post

COMMUNITY EMPOWERMENT is having a direct socioeconomic impact on the community by diversifying, donating, or employing locals. Community Empowerment grows community leaders, is change leading, bold, and entrepreneurial.

ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP is protecting the environment for those after you by implementing conservation and sustainable practices. It is committing to the protection and responsible use of the surroundings for future enjoyment.

ECOLOGICAL CONNECTION is immersion and engagement with land, water, flora or fauna in the environment. This is disconnecting to reconnect all while being responsible and conscious of the impact that is being made.

CROSS-CULTURAL ENGAGEMENT is having a direct interaction with the culture you are visiting. You are learning from them, whether it be textile skills, about their history, or staying with a local family in a homestay. Cross-cultural engagement with another culture will have a lasting impact long after a trip.

Teaming with Life

Devil rays flew through the air moments after dolphins surfaced beside our boat – wildlife was everywhere around us and we hadn’t even got in the water yet! This is Isla de Caño Marine Reserve offshore of Corcovado National Park on the Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica. Said to be one of the most biodiverse regions in all of the Americas, we were starting to believe that was true. Caño Island Marine Reserve is part of the Osa Conservation Area that includes Corcovado National Park on the mainland, the surrounding waters and the island itself. Ecotourism in Costa Rica is not hard to find and in this area it will straight up slap you in the face. There is no better place in Pura Vida country than here to connect with nature and discover the unknown. Very few people make the journey to this area, but getting here is cost effective and easy.

The Diving (& Snorkelling)

Scuba Diving off Isla de Caño in the Corcovado National Park region and Osa Peninsula is very easy and most rewarding. We went with Osa Divers and they were both professional and educational. Scuba diving is an experience that should educate about the marine life of that particular area as well as the conservation efforts being made. Here, conservation is in its highest form with the marine park and fishing exclusion zone.

We spent two days diving – after spotting the flying devil rays and visiting dolphins, we got to our site and jumped in. It didn’t take long to get lost in the countless schools of fish – that you could literally get lost in. Everywhere we looked there were fish, nurse sharks and turtles. This place was teaming with life! Five minutes later, a giant manta ray – and we mean giant – four or five meters across, came gracefully gliding above the visiting divers. One pass, two passes, and back again, it seemed to enjoy our company.

We continued on our dive, never lacking corals, marine life big and small, and rock formations to view. We took a lunch break on the island itself which has a secluded beach and a lone ranger patrol station. A trail begins at the ranger station that is relatively flat as it winds through the forest and eventually leads to a lookout point 110 meters above sea level. At the top, you’ll find granite spheres carved by pre-Columbian inhabitants. Archaeologists speculate this was a burial site for the same indigenous tribes.

After lunch we journeyed to our second dive spot, hopped back in the water and set off for more underwater adventures, again, surrounded by rock formations, and giant and small sea life. What was interesting about this dive was the safety stop. As we ascended to 5 metres and floated there, we looked down and discovered countless devil rays, swimming past us in schools below. It was incredible – the sea below us was blanketed in them and we had never seen anything like it before. This is what a marine reserve and protected waters look like – absolutely alive with ocean life, safe from the threat of overfishing and pollution. We need more of these in the world.

The next day our two dives were similar to the last, with more and more incredible encounters with manta and devil rays, turtles, sharks, fish, eels, rocks and corals, but this time, before we even got in the water, a manta ray came to surface next to our boat  – looked like our friends were happy to see us again.

Getting to the Osa Peninsula Region

Nature Air flies daily to Drake Bay, which is where our basecamp was. Drake Bay is a beautiful sleepy village that has many different accommodation options. We opted for cheap and cheerful while there with a million-dollar sunset view.


Alternative regions to stay include Puerto Jiménez which is also accessible by Nature Air.

Ecolodges in Corcovado National Park area

La Leona Eco-Lodge – Puerto Jiménez
Danta Lodge – Puerto Jiménez
Ojo del Mar Eco-Lodge – Puerto Jiménez
Anguila de Osa – Drake Bay

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Author: Eco Escape Travel | Date: May 16, 2017

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