Trip Information and FAQs
Guests will receive a pre-trip information package prior to their departure date outlining boarding information, check list, rentals and other details. Please read the pre-trip package for the latest and most up to date information about your trip.
What is included in the trip?
Accommodation, all meals (continental breakfast, breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert), non-alcoholic beverages and snacks, use of kayaks and stand up paddleboards (on Socorro Island trips only), weights, weight belts, aluminum 80’s and air, daily room service, towels, in-water divemastering, end of trip slideshow DVD and onboard facilities such as the hot tub and lounge.
Port Fee of $65.00 USD per person payable in cash onboard, transfers between airport and hospitality suite, gift shop purchases, bar, crew gratuities, dive gear rentals and optional wi-fi access onboard. Nitrox is available for $20.00 USD per dive day.
Proof of Dive Insurance from a reputable provider, such as DAN or Dive Assure, is required when you check in to the hospitality suite for all of our trips. No need to worry, we can assist with this purchase once you arrive! Please note, travel insurance cannot be purchased last minute after a weather event has been “named.” Please check out our Storm Policy.
Weather & Clothing
Surface weather at Socorro Island and Guadalupe Island is similar to southern California climate. Very warm during the day, and cool at night. Summer clothing should be fine for your trip. We recommend bringing a sweater, pants and a windbreaker/rain jacket.
A satellite phone is available onboard with airtime charges of $3.00 USD per minute. Should you want to leave an emergency number for family and friends at home, please use our office number, +1-604-241-1918. If it is outside office hours there will be an emergency number on the answering machine for our on call shoreside duty officer.
Customs & Cameras
Unfortunately, we have received recent reports of isolated incidents where guests have been charged taxes for bringing their camera housings into Mexico. This is a transgression of your rights as an international passenger and a violation of both Mexican and international law. The company is investigating this, and in the meantime, we would like to provide you with this information to help improve your experience at Mexican customs.
As an international passenger, you are entitled to bring without paying taxes, two cameras or video recording devices, and their accessories. An underwater housing unit is a camera accessory which fits your camera and allows control and usage of the device while diving. As the housing can only be functional when used with your camera, it should be considered a part of your “two cameras with their accessories” luggage allowance.
For more information, please see our Customs & Cameras page in your pre-trip information package or through our link here.
We have learned that the safest alcohol policy is to restrict guests from bringing their alcohol onboard. We provide a wide selection of beer, wine and alcohol from the ship’s bar at very reasonable prices. Please contact our operations office 60 days prior to your trip for a variation from this policy otherwise the crew will politely but firmly restrict all guests on your trip from bringing their own alcohol onboard. Please note, we have a strict drinking and diving policy onboard. When your drinking starts, your diving stops.
How much should I tip?
Crew gratuities are customary in this part of the world if you think the service is deserving, typically $250-350 per guest.
Can I smoke?
Yes, there is a designated smoking section on each boat. The crew onboard will be happy to show you.
How can I pay my onboard charges?
Onboard charges can be paid by Visa, MasterCard or cash. Please note, park and port fees must be paid in cash only.
What kind of outlets are onboard?
All our vessels are equipped with standard North American outlets that put out 110 volts. Please bring appropriate adapters if your electronics need a different format.
Food & Drink
You can expect a fusion of Mexican and West Coast North American food with fresh baking, produce and vegetables. Vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, food allergy options, and quasi kosher menus are available with at least 30 days prior notice.
Pre-Dive Continental Breakfast
A pre-dive continental breakfast with fresh baked goods, a fruit plate, homemade granola, a choice of cereal, yogurt, toast, fresh orange or mango juice and oatmeal.
Breakfast is usually served after the first dive and will be a mix of buffet and cooked to order. While menus are always subject to change and refinement, our “hotel breakfast” presently includes eggs to order, omelets, eggs benedict, french toast, pancakes, bean & rice burritos, muffins, hashbrowns, turkey bacon and sausages.
Lunch is served with salad and soup of the day and presently includes Deli style sandwiches with fresh bread, homemade italian style pizzas, fish tacos, burgers, fajitas with fresh salsas, tostadas, quesadillas and lasagna.
Our hostesses will be on the back deck to meet you after every dive with a big smile and a tray of goodies, drinks, and snacks. Afternoon snacks include a selection of the following; homemade cookies, brownies, sushi, cheese and cracker plates, chicken wings, assorted cakes, freshly baked muffins, banana bread, artichoke dip, ceviche, nachos, melted brie, ice cream, vegetable platters with dip and all sorts of other yummy stuff.
Dinner is served plated, buffet or family style. There is a nice array of both Mexican and American style meals. Some of the delicious dishes include: street taco night, roast beef, salmon teriyaki, clam alfredo and New York grilled steak.
Tea, coffee, water, juice, soda are included in your trip price. We also carry a wide variety of alcoholic beverages stashed in our onboard bar including: red wine, white wine, champagne, vodka, gin, tequila, rum, mezcal, brandy, bourbons, single malt scotch and beer (Mexican and domestic)
What is the diving like at Guadalupe Island?
Adventuring out to Guadalupe Island is all about getting in the water and being closer to great white sharks then you ever imagined. It’s a one day open ocean sail out to Guadalupe Island. The island is 25 miles long and we anchor where the waters are almost always calm. The truly amazing thing about this destination is the sheer number of great white sharks. Please visit the Guadalupe Island page for details, photos, cage diagrams and more.
When should I book my flights?
We suggest flying in the day before the boat departs. This allows time for any delays or missing baggage. After the trip we also suggest you depart the following day to account for any delays at the border.
What airport should I fly into?
Either San Diego California or Tijuana International usually connecting through Mexico City. Many of our guests from Europe, South and Central America and Asia prefer to connect through Mexico City.
Where should I stay before my trip?
We highly recommend a convenient airport pickup by the hotel transportation directly to the beautiful Hotel Coral in Ensenada. The resort is a great place to decompress before venturing out to Guadalupe Island with full services from spa and massage to kayaks and bikes. Ensenada is one of our favourite places and has become the gastronomic and wine destination in all of Mexico. For those who prefer to stay in San Diego, we recommend the Four Points Sheraton and can get you a great rate at this 4 star hotel.
Where do I meet the boat?
Waterfront Marina Bar and Grill at the Hotel Coral. Check-in is available from 3pm onwards on the day of departure. Your ship will board at 9:30pm.
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you make your own way to Ensenada from the United States, you MUST STOP at the IMN Immigration Office at the border and OBTAIN an FMT TOURIST PERMIT. The Mexican Authorities will not allow anybody without this permit to board our ships.
What is the diving like at Socorro Island?
After an overnight voyage we arrive at these Jurassic Park-like islands and with a little luck from mother ocean will experience interactions with our giant mantas unlike anywhere else. The mantas of the Socorro Islands love divers, they love to swim with divers, love to feel our bubbles hitting their bellies and then they quiver with excitement. Socorro is also home to humpback whales, dolphins and up to 10 types of sharks. Please visit the Socorro Island page for details, photos, wildlife calendar and more.
Where should I stay and what can I do before my trip ?
Imagine yourself getting picked up at the Cabo San Lucas airport and whisked to the property of your choice whether it’s a beautiful private villa, local hotel or resort. We highly recommend the villa option where your only decision is whether you want a private chef and what type of wine you would like to be waiting for you on arrival. This is all part of the door-to-door concierge service Cabo Villas is proud to provide for Nautilus divers.
In addition to accommodations, our partners at Cabo Villas offer numerous adventures before your Liveaboard excursion begins. From ocean-based activities like sailing, parasailing, or kayaking, to land based adventures like ATV tours and zip-lining, Cabo Villas has it all. Have a look at the activities available.
When should I book my flights?
We suggest flying in the day before the boat departs. This allows time for any delays or missing baggage. After the trip, flights departing after 12PM are perfect!
Where do I meet the boat?
Please meet us at our dive center located at the Tesoro Los Cabos in Cabo San Lucas, where you can leave your bags and then tour town and enjoy a nice dinner before boarding the ship. The crew is working hard right up to boarding time to get the ship in tip top condition so please meet us at our hospitality suite and not at the boat.
What airport should I fly into?
You will fly into the San Jose del Cabo airport (SJD), and then proceed to our dive center at the Tesoro Los Cabos in Cabo San Lucas.
What should I bring?
- Valid Passport
- Visa (if required)
- Credit Card (if applicable)
- Hooded Vest (recommended)
- Wetsuit (5-7mm recommended)
- Personal toiletries
- Camera gear
- Plenty of film/memory cards
- A good book
The ship disembarks at 8:30am. If flying out on the day of disembarkation, we recommend booking a flight no earlier than 12:00 pm.