The Bat Islands, located about 30 miles/45 km northwest of Playas del Coco, are a remote group of uninhabited islets located in the North Pacific of Costa Rica. They are located in the Guanacaste Conservation Area and belong to Santa Rosa National Park.
The boat trip to the islands usually takes over an hour, always depending on ocean conditions and the boat used. During the trip there is a chance to see schools of dolphins, turtles and occasionally whales.
The bat islands offer a wide variety of marine life difficult to find elsewhere. This enormous biological potential is due to what is called «upwelling», which occurs when the surface water is pushed seaward by winds allowing the rise of cold bottom waters rich in nutrients. This abundance of nutrients attracts a wealth of flora and fauna.
One of the most important aspects, and what has brought fame to these islands, are frequent encounters with bull sharks «Carcharhinus leucas» which can grow to more than 12 feet in length.
Besides the presence of the amazing bull sharks, the islands also offer great encounters with stingrays, schools of eagle rays, barracudas, thick schools of grunts, snappers and tuna, all kinds of puffer fish, angel fish, butterfly fish and other species like grouper, moray eels, octopus and crustaceans. Here you can also find green, hawksbill, olive ridley and leatherback turtles, as well as many of the species of coral found in the eastern Pacific of Costa Rica. There is also the chance of bumping into sailfish, wahoo and mahi-mahi.
It is important to note that a certain level of experience is needed to dive in the Bat Islands due to the occasional presence of waves, strong currents and rough surface conditions.
Visibility varies with the time and the conditions between 6 and 30 meters (18-100 feet).
Likewise the temperature varies between 24 and 26 ° C (75-80 ° F)
The maximum depths changes according to the diving point and varies between 60 ft to 130 ft.
|DISTANCE FROM THE SHORE
|30 miles from Playas del Coco
|From 20 to 90 feet
|From 60 to 130 feet
|Between 75 and 80ºF
|Common presence of strong currents and waves.
|Bull shark, giant manta ray, eagle rays, barracudas, grunts, snappers, puffer fishes, angel fish, butterfly fish, goliath grouper, moray eels, octopuses, sea turtles, sail fish, wahoo and mahí mahí.
|From March to November