Cancun Underwater Museum gets more ghostly figures

Cancun is probably best known for its warm weather, beautiful beaches and the bluest water you may ever see.

But beneath those turquoise waves is a popular tourist attraction that is about to get a bit bigger.

The Cancun Underwater Museum, features a maze of 400 ghostly looking, life-sized sculptures submerged the bottom of a national marine park. In July the museum will complete its final installation of about 60 new sculptures designed to become a new habitat for marine life.

This unique and popular site, which attracts about 750,000 visitors annually, was created in 2010. The sculptures, made of specially formulated, marine-grade cement -- many of which are cast from local residents -- were submerged underwater and placed on the sea floor where divers are free to explore.

The sculptures are only 28 feet deep in water, with a shallower portion set off just for snorkelers, which means both divers and snorkelers can enjoy the sculptures.

More On This...

The museum not only provides a home for marine creatures, it also diverts snorkelers and divers from fragile coral reefs.

Museum director and sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor’s most recent sculptures include “The Last Supper,” which is a table of two with plates of half-eaten fish and a centerpiece of apples and hand grenades. This work depicts the threat oceans face as a result of over-fishing.

The newest phase of the museum includes the "Phoenix," the figure of a woman with movable wings of living purple gorgonian fan coral that appear to beat with the wave cycles.“Urban Reef,” another of his works, is a collection of architectural structures designed to look like a street scene and is home to certain species of reef dwellers, such as juvenile fish, crustaceans, and sea urchins.

To get to the museum, book through a local tour company like Aquaworld that offers snorkeling trips.