Diving Esmeralda Canyon in Belize | Scuba Diving in Belize

Diving Esmeralda Canyon in Belize

Diving Esmeralda Canyon in Belize
Diving Esmeralda Canyon in Belize

Esmeralda Canyon in Belize

In a country famous for its shipwrecks, steep drop-offs, clear water, and abundance of marine life, one of the standout dive sites in Belize is the Esmeralda Canyon.

This unique dive site is known for its large collection of giant black groupers, eels, and nurse sharks that inhabit the area. With an average depth of 60 feet and abundant visibility (averaging around 70 feet), divers step into a vast aquarium of sea turtles, fish, and shark species that thread their way through this section of spur and grove reefs. The Esmeralda Canyon is a natural valley, its colorful fauna making for a perfect backdrop on this unforgettable dive site.

Located approximately 30 minutes by boat from the island of Ambergris Caye, Esmeralda Canyon is located in the middle of the Belize Barrier Reef, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The clean water, bright sandy seafloor, and abundance of marine life make this a truly must-do dive in Belize.

Esmeralda Canyon is actually the name of several different canyons. The area is part of a protected marine zone, so buoys and mooring lines have been established to show where one dive site ends and another dive sit ebegins.

Most dive tours to Esmeralda Canyon include multiple dives in the various sections of this part of the reef with a brief 15-minute break between, giving participants a chance to experience all the best that Esmeralda Canyon has to offer during either a half-day or full-day tour.

The average dive at Esmeralda Canyon begins with a descent to around 43 feet (13 meters) at the end of a mooring line followed by a second descent to or near the bottom. Divers can expect to see sleeping nurse sharks, moral eels popping out of their dens, and other inquisitive animals.

Common wildlife found in Esmeralda Canyon:

Nurse sharks, Pederson shrimp, loggerhead turtles, hawksbill turtles, moray eels, grouper fish, spotted drums, cleaner shrimp, arrowhead crabs, southern stingrays, French angelfish, squid, and channel crabs.

Esmeralda Canyon is also home to a wide variety of fauna and coral, including:

Anemones, tube sponges, barrel sponges, brain coral, staghorn coral, Christmas Tree worms, tunicates, Spaghetti worms, corallimorphs, gorgonians, encrusting sponges, and Zoanthids.

On occasion, some divers have spotted nudibranch (molluscs), dolphins, reef sharks, and hammerhead sharks.

Esmeralda Canyon is rated for divers of all experience levels. The maximum depth of Esmeralda Canyon is 70 feet (21 meters). Most expeditions to Esmeralda Canyon depart from San Pedro on Ambergris Caye.

Top Places to Stay in Belize






Belize Tour Companies and Travel Agents

Belize Real Estate Opportunities






June 29, 2018

How the Belize Barrier Reef Beat the Endangered List

An oil drilling moratorium, development restrictions and fishing reform has helped the 200-mile-reef come off Unesco’s endangered world heritage sites...
Read More
June 26, 2018

What the New Alaia Belize Will Look Like

The newest addition to Belize’s fast-growing hotel pipeline is on track for 2020, and now we’ve gotten the exclusive first...
Read More
June 26, 2018

Saving the underwater wonder world of Belize’s reef

Just a stone’s throw off the coast of Belize, brightly colored tropical fish mingle with sharks, manta rays and sea...
Read More
June 26, 2018

RCL Exclusive Your Off-the-Grid Guide to Belize

Belize is the tropical vacation version of a perfect meal. Light appetizer, indulgent main course, decadent dessert and booze …...
Read More
June 17, 2018

Latham: Hard work must be the national symbol of Belize

BELIZE CITY, Belize — Belize is tiny for a country — about the land size of Maryland — but it...
Read More
June 17, 2018

7 Ambergris Caye Restaurants Secret Special Request Options

Once you have lived on Ambergris Caye awhile, you get to know which restaurants have off-menu special request options. Read...
Read More
June 12, 2018

Please Belize Me: Ten Reasons to Put Ambergris Caye on Travel List

After a year of procrastination and poor planning, Belize finally made it on my to do list in 2018. Read...
Read More
June 12, 2018

Autograph Collection Hotels Set to Debut in Belize with the Opening of Alaia

Autograph Collection Hotels, in partnership with owner and developer Andrew Ashcroft, today announced the brand will debut in Belize with the...
Read More
June 12, 2018

5 Reasons to Vacation in Belize this Summer

Summer is the busiest season for travel to Europe. That’s where most vacationers are headed during the months of June,...
Read More
1 2 3 19

Comments

comments

0 Comments

Leave a Comment

Login

Welcome! Login in to your account

Remember me Lost your password?

Don't have account. Register

Lost Password

Register

Close
Please support the site
By clicking any of these buttons you help our site to get better
Banner-1