Meet new scuba divers, maintain a virtual dive log, participate in our forum, share underwater photos, research dive sites and more. Members login here.

Revision 1/22/2013 6:11 AM by LatitudeAdjustment
View Most Recent Revision
Whalers Cove (Point Lobos) - Carmel - Monterey CA

Located in Point Lobos State Reserve, Whalers Cove is the most coveted dive location is this area. The highly restricted access of the Park creates an environment teaming with marine life. You must make reservations well in advance to enter, and must register with the gate before diving in.

SportDivers Planets 50 Greatest dives, # 5 Point Lobos, Northern Californians are a lucky bunch. Just a couple of hours from San Francisco are Tahoe’s ski slopes, Santa Cruz’s surf breaks and the town of Monterey, where new divers go for their open-water certification. While the diving is excellent at shore sites such as Lover’s Point and Breakwater, the best diving is 15 minutes away in Point Lobos National Park. Only 15 scuba-diving buddy groups are allowed into the park each day, ensuring the reefs remain pristine and the marine life unmolested. Steps from the parking lot, divers immerse under a canopy of thick kelp forests where light and shadow battle for supremacy. Look closely in the fronds for kelp crabs and minuscule snails. Lingcod patrol the reef edges, and nudibranchs flaunt their colors openly. A harbor seal — there are dozens lining the sandy shore — might pop by for a visit, if you’re lucky. But you’re diving Point Lobos — you’re lucky already. — David Espinosa

Drive South on Highway 1 from Carmel, past Monastery beach. You will see
the entrance on your right.
The comment about this park not allowing snorkeling is
false. I snorkeled with a buddy four times here in July and August of 2009.
This may be a great scuba site but it is not a great snorkeling site. Within
the cove the water was often murky and the sea life was close to non existent.
Outside the cove the visibility opens up but the depth keeps things of interest
out of sight for snorkelers. This is the only dive sight I visited in
California and it did not live up to the hype I heard about when asking for a
good snorkel site. Maybe I am just spoiled from all my Caribbean diving.
Love this place! The dive was very easy. I had never dove
here before. We suited up at Whalers cove and headed out. Very easy to navigate
this place. The sea life is amazing: harbor seals, sea anemones, rock fish,
kelp fish, eels, etc... And the visibility and kelp are Amazing! Important to
remember: the park only allows 30 divers a day, reserve early, bring your cert
card, and have a buddy, no solos here. And, think warm! We dove 7mm with lots
of layers and got one dive in; it was 52 degrees, but so worth it. Brrrr.
Friends we met up there dove dry suits, and got one dive in; an up welling of
cold from the trench brought more cold water in from the deep. We only saw 1/8
of what is to be seen. A definitely must to dive again!