Arrecife Palancar

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Arrecife Palancar information

Isla Cozumel , Mexico
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The reefs are where it's at for prime scuba diving off this island. One of the best is the kilometres-long Arrecife Palancar (Palancar Reef), where stunning coral formations and a 'horseshoe' of coral heads offer some of the world's finest down-under - all at an amazing 70m (230ft) visibility. Underwater photographers should come ready to shoot like mad. The water around the reef is about 24m (80ft) deep, providing pros opportunities for fantastic deep-water diving.

The north end of the reef, called Palancar Gardens, is shallower but just as gorgeous. There are caverns and plenty of brightly coloured sea creatures.

The Palancar Reef areas are popular, so their much-lauded coral is always vulnerable to attack. Be careful to leave the area no less pristine than it was before your arrival. To get to this reef, which is over a kilometre (not quite a mile) off shore, you can sign up for a day cruise or charter a boat from a tour agency.