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Dive Review of Argo in
Costa Rica/Cocos Island

Argo: "Argo to Cocos Island Costa Rica. September 2017", Sep, 2017,

by Alan Mayfield, VA, US (Reviewer Reviewer 4 reports). Report 9902.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments This trip was planned by a friend. We had been stationed together at the US Embassy in Athens and dove a lot, including Sharm El Sheikh. There were four of us going together. We had to travel to San Jose a couple of days early, because of a hurricane that was coming through Florida. So I stayed at Hampton Inn for a few days until the dive trip started. We spent that time visiting a National Park with waterfalls and exotic cats. On the day of pickup, a van from the Argo picked us up and transported us to the other side of the island to catch the Argo. Along the way, we stopped at a couple of interesting sites. Upon arrival at the Argo, we boarded the boat and began our 36 hour crossing to Cocos. The crew spoke of "The Crossing" as if it was the title of a Stephen King thriller. I suppose it can be rough at times, but we had smooth crossings both ways.

The ship is advertised as a luxury yacht and it truly was. The staterooms were large with a private bath. The food was outstanding and plentiful throughout the trip. The staff onboard was very accommodating to our needs. There are no complaints about the boat or the service or food onboard.

Now, about the diving. It was amazing. We had read about the hammerheads and were not disappointed. We saw between ten and hundreds of hammerheads on every dive. All of the dives consisted of going to the bottom, getting behind some rocks, and watching the hammerheads swim around. The sites were cleaning station and the sharks glided in and the fish picked at their skin. Amazing. There were tiger sharks on almost every dive. The interesting thing to me was that when the Tiger sharks came up, the hammerheads departed. It was breath-taking to see all the activity in front of us. There were night dives scheduled during the trip. I did not go on any of them, but understand they were great, as well. The visibility was at least 100 feet on every dive and there was no discernible currents on any dive.

The reason we planned this trip on the Argo and not the other operators there was because of the submersible dive offered. This is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity. On the day of my dive, we were given a dive brief and a pair of blue overalls. We entered the submersible with our pilot. The submersible has a plexiglass dome and a small plexiglass port at our feet. There were two options offered. One was to go down to 600 feet to the Everest Seamount or to go over the side of the Everest Seamount down to 1000 feet. Of course we went down to 1000 feet. On the way down, we saw what looked like was a school of fish above us, but it was exhaust bubbles we were releasing. One thing that surprised me was that we did not see any life on the way down. I expected to see hammerheads.

We moved around the seamount and then went over the side and down to 1000 feet. I didn't know what to expect, but thought there might be angler fish and other species only seen at great depth. We did not see anything like that, but I did see a 4 foot grouper down there. That would be nothing of note, except it was 1000 FEET DOWN. After about an hour at depth, we returned to the surface.

I would highly recommend this trip to anyone wanting to experience the submersible, and also to anyone that wants to dive with hammerheads for a week. The boat was excellent, the crew was helpful and attentive to our needs and we got the added thrill of having the owner of the Argo along on our trip. He is an amazing man. He lost his leg to cancer as a young boy, but he was diving with us on every dive offered. This is definitely a dive that has been on my bucket list and is now checked off.
Websites Argo   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Florida, San Diego, Athens, Greece, Italy, Sharm El Sheikh, Phuket
Closest Airport San Jose Getting There From DC with a connection through Atlanta.

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 76-82°F / 24-28°C Wetsuit Thickness 5
Water Visibility 100-500 Ft/ 30-152 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile no
Enforced diving restrictions All dives were led by a dive master. The maximum depth was 100 feet.
Liveaboard? yes Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas 1 or 2
Dolphins 1 or 2 Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 5 stars
Large Pelagics 4 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 5 stars Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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