San Benedicto Island

Home of the world-famous "Boiler" where very friendly Giant Pacific Mantas congregate, San Benedicto is usually the first island visited on a Solmar V trip.

This island is the third largest in the Revillagigedo group at about 2.6 miles long. It has two prominent peaks, one that is very obviously a volcanic crater. The walls of the volcano are eroded, leaving vertical ridges from top to bottom. The crater is almost 1/2 a mile wide. At the base of this volcano is a lava delta that reaches out into the ocean. The north half of the island is green with vegetation.

One of our favorite dive sites here is "the Boiler", a large pinnacle that reaches from the depths to within several feet of the surface. Its small enough to swim around several times in one dive, but is large enough to be a favorite gathering point, attracting marine life from miles around. Humpback whales, whale sharks, and schooling hammerheads can be encountered here.

What makes this site so magical is the congregation of very friendly Giant Pacific Mantas. They often greet our divers even before we get into the water and swim with us all day. Divers may observe many mantas who come hear to be cleaned by the endemic clarion angelfish. They seem to enjoy swimming closely over divers and stopping directly above to experience the bubble Jacuzzi on their bellies formed by exhaling bubbles from the divers. They often swim from one diver to the next posing for every photographer along the way.

On the other side of the island is "the Canyon". Here we commonly see mantas, dolphins, hammerhead sharks, Galapagos sharks and Silky sharks.

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