top of page
Search
  • Writer's pictureMM

Secret World Of the Mola Mola.

Experience Snorkeling with Sunfish in San Diego


San Diego, a city famed for its idyllic coastlines and rich marine biodiversity, holds a hidden gem for ocean enthusiasts—the opportunity to snorkel with Mola mola, one of the largest bony fish in the world. Also known as ocean sunfish, these creatures  offer a unique marine experience due to their peculiar appearance and fascinating behaviors.


Free Diver Encountering Three Adult Sunfish (Mola Mola) in the Waters Offshore San Diego, CA"

Free Diver Encountering Three Adult Sunfish (Mola Mola) in the Waters Offshore San Diego, CA


Some Facts on the Mola Mola

The Mola mola, or ocean sunfish, can be recognized by its flattened body and large size, often weighing between 247 and 1,000 kg (545–2,205 lb). Lacking a true tail, their appearance is akin to a giant floating head. They are known for their sunbathing habit at the ocean's surface, which helps them regulate their body temperature after diving into deep, colder waters. Despite their docile nature, Mola mola are capable of rapid bursts of speed, especially when evading predators or leaping from the water to dislodge parasites.


Why San Diego for Mola Mola?

Despite being widlely unknown. Offshore San Diego is one of the best spots globally for snorkeling with Mola mola. These marine giants, present in these waters year-round, gather in large numbers from late April to early October, with the peak season in the warmer summer months. The Pacific's nutrient-rich waters around San Diego bring these intriguing creatures closer to the surface, allowing for spectacular sightings and interactions.



Underwater Photographer capturing a snap of an Adult Sunfish (Mola Mola)  Offshore San Diego, CA

Underwater Photographer capturing a snap of an Adult Sunfish (Mola Mola) Offshore San Diego, CA


Snorkeling Tours: A Sustainable Approach

Eco-conscious snorkeling tours in San Diego, such as those offered by operators like NetZero Expeditions, emphasize sustainability and environmental respect. These tours are conducted in small groups to ensure minimal impact on wildlife, providing a personal and educational experience. The tours utilize Zodiac RIB boats designed for stability and comfort, enhancing the ability to search for and swim with Mola mola in their natural habitat.


Mola Mola Across the Globe

While San Diego offers exceptional opportunities to encounter Mola mola, several other destinations around the world are also renowned for sightings of these unique fish:


  • Bali, Indonesia: Divers flock to Bali for its diverse marine life, including the chance to see Mola mola at famous dive sites around Nusa Penida during the right season.

  • Alboran Sea, Spain: In Europe, the Alboran Sea is a notable spot for encountering sunfish, thanks to its favorable climate and marine conditions.

  • Galapagos Islands, Ecuador: Known for their rich biodiversity, the Galapagos Islands host several species of Mola, providing exciting encounters for visitors.

  • Shizuoka, Japan: The waters off Shizuoka are a traditional haven for Mola mola, particularly during the summer months when the conditions are most favorable.



 Adult Sunfish (Mola Mola) in beautiful blue water Offshore San Diego, CA

Adult Sunfish (Mola Mola) in beautiful blue water Offshore San Diego, CA


The Mola Mola Experience

Encountering a Mola mola, with its massive, flat body and peculiar fins, is a surreal and unforgettable experience.San Diego's offerings for snorkeling with the Mola mola highlight the city's status as a premier destination for unique marine experiences. Whether you're a seasoned diver or a marine wildlife enthusiast, the opportunity to swim alongside these gentle giants of the sea is an extraordinary adventure that draws visitors from around the world. With sustainable practices in place, this activity not only thrills but also educates participants about the importance of ocean conservation.



17 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


Commenting has been turned off.
bottom of page