With its long coastlines, hitting both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, Mexico is truly a diver’s paradise. Boasting warm waters, stunning underwater landscapes ranging from spectacular reefs to the otherworldly beauty of the cenotes, and an abundance of marine life, it’s no wonder that Mexico is home to some of the best dive resorts in the world. If you also pair this with the Mexican people’s warm hospitality, rich cultural heritage, and delicious food, you have a truly unforgettable diving holiday. We’ve narrowed down the top picks for five of the top dive resorts in Mexico, according to PADI Travel reviews.
Presidente Intercontinental, Cozumel
The Caribbean island of Cozumel, just off the coast of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, is a diver’s dream. Cozumel is located on the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, the second-largest barrier reef system in the world. Famously known for its easy drift dives, it is home to some of the best diving in Mexico.
The Presidente Intercontinental is a luxurious resort that caters to all levels of divers, from beginners to veterans. Its onsite PADI 5-Star Dive Center, Scuba Du, has been serving guests for over thirty years. They offer PADI-certified dive courses and guided dives for all experience levels, plus all dive packages include unlimited shore dives.
After all the diving, guests can relax in their luxurious guestrooms, some with direct access to the hotel’s private white sand beach, or enjoy the tennis courts, putting green, or hotel spa. With four restaurants and two bars onsite, you certainly don’t need to leave the resort during your surface intervals.
The Reef Playacar, Playa del Carmen
Playa del Carmen is located in the heart of the Riviera Maya. Its location is ideal for exploring the vibrant underwater world of the Yucatan Peninsula. The Reef Playacar brings you an all-inclusive resort from which you can easily access the calm, warm waters of the Caribbean Sea, check out the best cenote diving, or even dive with bull sharks or take a day trip to Isla Mujeres to snorkel with whale sharks, depending on the season.
The Reef Marina Dive Center, onsite at The Reef Playacar, is a PADI 5-Star Dive Center that offers daily trips to the most popular dive sites in the area. The conditions are perfect for beginners, but they also provide courses for advanced divers. And if you have any non-divers in the group, they’re taken care of with snorkeling tours and equipment rental.
Afterward, you can enjoy the nightly shows or stroll through Playa del Carmen’s vibrant streets. Plus, with six restaurants and bars to choose from, you’re sure to enjoy a gourmet experience!
Costa Baja Resort, La Paz
La Paz is the gateway to the Sea of Cortez, undoubtedly one of the most biodiverse marine regions in the world. The waters surrounding La Paz are home to whale sharks, hammerheads, sea lions, dolphins, and schools of colorful fish, making it a must-visit for any avid diver.
Costa Baja Resort provides a luxurious escape with stunning views of the Marina and Sea of Cortez. The resort hosts a luxury spa and six restaurants, including a sushi bar. It also boasts a variety of water sports.
Their onsite PADI 5-Star Dive Resort, Cortez Club, offers a range of dive courses and daily excursions to the best dive sites in the area. If you have any non-divers in your group who don’t want to miss out on the chance of seeing large marine life, they also organize snorkeling trips to spot whale sharks, sea lions, and more.
Secrets Aura, Cozumel
If you’re looking for a luxurious, adults-only getaway in Cozumel, Secrets Aura is the perfect resort for you. Their Unlimited-Luxury® concept offers an all-inclusive experience, with gourmet a la carte dining and a 24-hour concierge service. You can even opt for a mimosa breakfast in bed when you’re not diving.
Their onsite dive shop, Dive House, provides all the services you’d expect from a PADI 5-Star Dive Center and more. Their boats come equipped with camera racks and water-level platforms for ease of entry. Furthermore, their “Experienced Diver Program” groups guests based on their experience to ensure you get the maximum bottom time and the best dive sites for your level.
Flying Cloud Resort, Xcalak
If you want to explore the Caribbean coast but are looking to get away from the crowds of the Riviera, Xcalak may be the perfect location for you. This small village is located at the southernmost point of the Yucatan Peninsula, close to the border with Belize. It provides a tranquil, off-the-beaten-path getaway.
This rustic 3-star hotel only has four rooms, making it a truly personal experience for the environmentally-conscious diver. It’s located within the Xcalak National Reef Park, established to protect this unique ecosystem from overfishing and development.
The onsite dive center, XTC Dive Shop, offers boat dives in the marine reserve. As well as enjoying the stunning local reef and deep walls, you can experience unique manatee encounters or even snorkel with the local crocodiles. After diving, make the most of the complimentary kayaks or SUP boards to explore the mangroves.
Ready to Book One of the Best Dive Resorts in Mexico?
Contact PADI Travel to explore your options for your next Mexican getaway. If resorts are not your thing and you prefer to be surrounded by water, consider a liveaboard. Visit the remote Revillagigedo Islands or the far corners of the magical Sea of Cortez, famously labeled “The World’s Aquarium” by Jacques Cousteau.
Whatever you decide, one thing is for sure – diving in Mexico will not disappoint.