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Cozumel reefs

With some of the most beautiful and most popular reefs in the world, it's vital that Cozumel takes positive steps to conserve this precious natural underwater resource.

With this in mind, the local Marine Park authority announced a new strategy, this week, which will see different areas of the protected park taking a break from tourist activity on a periodic basis.

From October 7, 2019 to December 15, 2019, part of the south of the marine reserve will be closed to tourists for snorkeling, diving and swimming. Tours that previously went there can temporarily divert to the park's many other beautiful underwater areas.

Cozumel Marine Park Map

One of the largest local tour operators said they fully subscribed to the enormous conservation effort and that they would "participate decisively and proactively".

There are 14 main snorkeling and diving sites within the park, of which only 3 will be affected: Colombia, El Cielo and Palancar. Palancar Beach is outside the area and will remain open but there will be restrictions on entering the water from the beaches inside Punta Sur park.

Cozumel reef snorkeling

Cozumel underwater tours that previously went to those sites can now go to the other 11 sites instead, which include Cedral, Cardona, San Clemente and ParaĆ­so.

There are also still many amazing reefs to visit outside the Marine Park which are completely unaffected. They include those in the north which can be seen on the Cozumel Sailing Tour or Punta Molas Boat Tour.

Cozumel scuba diving

1.8 million people enjoy Cozumel's Marine Park every year and the area is protected by Mexican federal law. If you're one of the many to visit please remember to follow the Marine Park rules and you can also play your part in conserving this amazing piece of nature.

Article updated October 10, 2019 to include the end date of December 15 and clarify the closed area in paragraph 3; make clear Palancar Beach remains open but Punta Sur beach has restrictions in paragraph 5; and make the closed zone clearer on the map graphic.