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It´s time for the CATALINAS

Above all, it’s time for rays,rays and more rays...

By: Andrés Benavente

Photos courtesy of:

Diego Mejías

Oliver Bloemeke

Martin Van Gestel

Rachel Low

Javier Canciani

It’s well known that the oceans of Guanacaste are famous for the abundance of marine life and for the incredible diving experiences that its waters offer.


Though each dive site has its own particular attraction there is one that always gathers the best stories, generally with a common denominator:  rays, rays and more rays!  This place is overcome with Mobley Rays, Spotted Rays, Eagle Rays, Diamond Stingrays, Southern Stingrays, Round Stingrays, Lesser Devil Rays and of course, the magnificent Giant Manta Ray or rather, dozens of them at once…


The Catalina Island is the name of this paradise, a small group of volcanic rocks some 60 minutes from Tamarindo and about 40 minutes from Playas del Coco, internationally catalogued among the 5 most spectacular dive sites of all the Central American Pacific.

In this rocky coral reef there is an abundance of all types of colorful tropical fauna and it’s possible to see turtles, angel fish, octopus, seahorses, star fish, several species of morays, some sharks and of course, pleeeenty of rays all in a single dive!

And just in case this does not seem enough for you, let me tell you that you could also run into whale sharks, pilot whales, striped dolphins, and humpback whales.


But above all, the Catalinas is “THE” place if you want to see and swim with the entire and ample ray family all in the same and unforgettable day…

Don’t miss visiting the Catalinas…

When?  Diving is incredible year round, but to see the spectacle of the rays in its fullness, the best time is right now, between December and April of each year…

What will we see? Let’s say that it is practically guaranteed that in each dive you will see a minimum of some 200 rays, about 10,000 fish of various types in big schools, no less than 5 silvertip sharks, at least a couple of turtles, a few small octopuses, some seahorses, plenty of morays and an ample array of reef flora and fauna.

Dive with...

Summer Salt: 2670 0308 Playas del Coco

Deep Blue diving: 2670 1004 P. del Coco

Diving Safaris: 2672 1260 Playa Hermosa y Playas del Coco

Rich Coast Diving: 2670 0176 Playas del Coco y P. Hermosa



Visit our latest issue on virtual paper
…or see previous issues in our virtual kiosk
utopia magazine and travel guide

What else would you like to see in Utopia Magazine? 

Things to do in Costa Rica

Golf in Guanacaste 

Tico Glossary Catalinas island 

Barra Honda Caves

Rincón de la Vieja

Diving in Guanacaste


Marina Papagayo Medical tourism

What does Pura Vida means? 

MAPS Ecology   Culture   

Hotels in Costa Rica Birds

watching guide MarineTurtles 

Playas del Coco NationalParks 

Transportation guide 

Humpback Whales 


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magazine and travel guide