As we approached the main island, I couldn’t get over just how beautiful the color of the water was! Due to the possibility of strong currents, this area is not recommended for the new diver. It takes us about 1 hour to get from Playas del Coco to the Bat Islands – Islas Murcielagos. Our boats have an area in the shade, shore communication systems, oxygen, and a first aid kit. The dives can also be quite deep, sometimes reaching over 100 feet or 30 meters. Rocket Frog Divers Bull shark diving at Bat Island is a very exciting and Adrenalin loaded experience. The nurse shark really freaked us out as we were not expecting to see one at all! After we finished snorkeling, we walked up to the park ranger office to check in and say hi to the two guards who stay on the island full time. They are actually located just off the coast of Santa Rosa National Park, which is famous for it’s landscape, wildlife, as well of some famous surfing … All of a sudden, Marcy started pointing to something in front of us and we saw a large fin dip into the water. It rained a little bit in the morning and in the late afternoon but snorkeling conditions were wonderful and we got nice weather for the greater part of the day. It started raining a bit past Witch’s Rock, one of the most famous surf spots in Costa Rica. One scuba diving boat stopped at the island for about 20 minutes and then left. The Bat Island is located just a kilometer away from Baina beach of Vasco-da-Gama, and is well known for its snorkeling sites and other water sports. From the coastal waters to the vast strides of the open ocean, your guide and the captain will use their eagle eyes to help you spot dolphins, turtles and whales (Jul.-Nov.) until you arrive to the shores of Cano Island. Snorkeling and diving are good all year, but are best during the dry season (Dec.-April). This place deserves to … The mantas are joined by schools of their smaller relative, the Devil Ray. During the summer months of December – April, it gets incredibly windy and conditions are not suitable or safe for diving/snorkeling/hiking. We watched the turtles swim around us and soaked in all the stunning views until it was time to go. Like I mentioned earlier, the Bat Islands are boat access only and nearly everyone that goes visits as part of a scuba diving excursion. These islands are one of the only places in … Hotel Colono Beach For divers, the area is most famous for the encounters that you can have with the very large bull shark! It has a diverse variety of marine life that makes it regularly visited by tourists and divers.. If you’re looking for an unforgettable and unique experience in Costa Rica, the Bat Islands (Islas Murciélagos) offers exactly that. The second dive is on the way back to Playa del Coco and shallower but nevertheless as exciting, as there are chances to see mantas. Anyone can visit the islands to enjoy a memorable day of boating, snorkeling and hiking. If you are in love with snorkeling, you will be hypnotized with the environment in Bat Island. One of the world’s top ten scuba diving destinations, Cocos Island features an amazing display of biodiversity among ethereal underwater experiences. I wanted to go snorkeling. This lush, uninhabited island is located 340 miles off Costa Rica’s south Pacific coast. Snorkeling in Costa Rica Posted by Shilpy on October 5, 2012. The Bat Islands in Costa Rica (Isla Murcielago) are truly a scuba diver’s paradise. Your guides will leave the boat to arrange for your … I know Rich Coast Diving still runs Bat Island scuba diving tours through November, Deep Blue Diving runs them through October. Water temperatures are generally a little warmer from May until November. Most of the divers who have joined us on the Catalina Island Tours told us that it was amongst the most beautiful dive sites to which they have ever been! We found sea cucumbers, starfish, sea urchins and so much more. The name literally translates to ‘whale island’, and is so called because of its resemblance to a whale’s tail. This area is the only location in Costa Rica that you will be able to dive with the Bull Sharks. I’m not sure why exactly. The only other people there were the two park rangers. 2019 Rocket Frog Divers. It was breathtaking when the sun came out and we could see the crystal clear turquoise waters. Our trip to the Bat Islands (Islas Murciélagos) was hands down, one of the best things we’ve ever done in Costa Rica. But I really wanted to go. Visibility also varies greatly in this location of Costa Rica. The Bat Islands are located about 30 miles out to sea off the coast. The area has been protected as a marine preserve by the country as part of the national park. Due to weather conditions, the best (and only) time to visit the Bat Islands are during Costa Rica’s rainy season months, May – November. Scuba diving and snorkeling at Caño Island is one of the top activities to do in Uvita and the Osa Peninsula and it was one of our favorite experiences in Costa Rica so far. The turtles were the same, just nibbling on some sea grass, minding their own business as we watched them go about its day. All Rights Reserved. It was undeniably worth every penny and waking up at 5 AM! Phone: (506) 2787 0362. Santa Rosa National Park is the first national park established in Costa Rica back in 1971, encompassing over 387 km2 (149 sq mi) or land and water. The wait was absolutely worth it because the skies cleared up, the sun came out and we got to see the stunning islands in their full beauty. While this is a great place to go snorkeling, it is even better if you can go scuba diving as there are deeper spots that contain some of the most impressive marine life variety. From the moment we jumped into the water, we were surrounded by all of those who call the ocean home. During the scenic boat ride aboard our 24 ft PANGA boats, which lasts approximately 50 minutes, enjoy frequent sightings of dolphins, marine birds, as well as — in season — whales, false orcas and sea turtles. Costa Rica: Playa del Coco Snorkeling Spots. Not surprisingly, as you snorkel or dive around Isla Tortuga, one of two islands … Another huge attraction to the Bat Islands is the Pacific Giant Mantas. At the station, there are bathrooms and sinks and is also the start of the island trail. Located roughly 48 km off the coast of Costa Rica and from Santa Rosa National Park, these islands feature a large variety of marine species all in one place. Below you can read our whole experience. This place is the feels like a customized location for snorkeling admirers. We were really hoping to see some humpback whales as it was whale season in Costa Rica. Cano Island is located 12 nautical miles from Drake Bay. It appears that you stop running excursions in September. Weather and group size can limit the availability of these dives on any given day. Cocos Island. I also couldn’t believe we were the ONLY ones on the island. Costa Rica: Diving the Catalina Islands. Filed Under: Activities and tours Costa Rica. Because the waters are considered a part of Santa Rosa National Park, they are protected. You just need to hire a captain who will boat out there and is familiar with those waters. Thermoclines can be intense. This site is located at the outer most island of the chain and is where you will find the often feared bull shark which can easily reach 6 to 7 meters in length. Bat Islands is a seasonal dive trip from May through to October. It is a little way down the coast, but as such is a little less touristy. Slipping into the Pacific waters off Costa Rica for a snorkel is a relaxing way to spend the day. For the trail, we walked it in flip flops but you need to be in decent shape and be able to walk up and down ungroomed steep paths and hills. Please enter special requests here. It's a deep dive to see the sharks and therefore only for advanced certified divers that are trained to dive to 30meters/100 feet. It was the perfect spot to introduce Dad to Costa Rica's underwater playground! The Bat Islands (or Isla Murciealgo in spanish) are located on the Pacific Coast of Costa Rica off of the northern province of Guanacaste. The much smaller devil rays can sometimes be found in schools by the hundreds and even thousands majestically traveling through the water eating the plankton from the nutrient rich waters. You get absolutely incredible views of the islands, mountains and ocean. Our boat takes you there in about 1 hour! Snorkeling Costa Rica. Bull Shark swimming at the Bat Islands in Costa Rica. We visited end of August, August 20th to be exact. We even had a chance to tour the island. Playas del Coco, Guanacaste, Costa Rica. After the hike, we went back to the boat to eat lunch and cool off. Therefor quieter throughout the year! Places like Playas del Coco , Playa Hermosa, Playa Ocotal, Bat Islands and Catalina Islands are excellent for swimming with large marine creatures like manta rays, brightly colored tropical fish, sharks and sea turtles. July would have been better because Costa Rica receives a “little summer” where it dries up but August was nice too. From Playas del Coco, the islands are 1.5 hours one way by boat. One of the highlights are the face to face encounters with massive bull-sharks, up to 12ft/3.5m. We visited the Bat Islands on a day excursion with our friend who has a private boating company in Playas del Coco. Marcy took us along the coastline to check out Witch’s Rock and beaches in Santa Rosa National Park like Nancite and Naranjo. As we reached the Bat Islands, it started raining a little bit so we boated around the islands for about 1 hour until the rains left and winds died down. I will be in Guanacaste from October 26 to November 9 and want to experience the Bat Islands either on a trip like yours or as a scuba diving excursion, or both. (all our prices include the 13% Costa Rican Tax, so no hidden fees) This tiny island off the coast is a great location to spend the day, or even a weekend, and cool off. We made a short video of our visit to Bat Islands which you can watch below. We saw two turtles, a nurse shark, manta rays and huge fish (jacks I think). Located in the far north of the Guanacaste off the coast of Santa Rosa National Park. Book Now. The Bat Islands are full of marine life. 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