Check out our new site at

Swim Across The Continents

From Openwaterpedia
Marcos Díaz
Marcos Díaz

The Swim Across The Continents was a United Nations supported 5-part swim endeavor by Marcos Díaz of the Dominican Republic.

Marcos Díaz

Díaz is one of the world's most prolific, visionary and successful marathon swimmers of modern times. He was inducted in the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame as an Honour Swimmer in 2011. He is from the Dominican Republic and has traveled around the world to attempt and complete dozens of marathon swims. Diaz recently completed the Swim Across The Continents, a series of marathon swims endorsed by the United Nations (see below), and the Un Nado Por Las Costas. He also recently won The Clean Half extreme ocean swim in 2011.

Nadador dominicano de ultradistancia en aguas abiertas, Marcos Díaz es el primer y único nadador que ha unido los cinco continentes del mundo a nado.

Marcos nació el 12 de enero de 1975 en Santo Domingo y siendo pequeño le diagnosticaron un asma crónica. Con tan solo 6 años le recomendaron la natación como una forma de combatir su condición. El destino quedó trazado. Descubrió a través de este deporte cómo enfrentar las adversidades y superarse a sí mismo. Y encontró en la natación en aguas abiertas la forma de combinar su amor por el mar y su pasión por los deportes de resistencia y larga duración. Marcos dejaría de ser un infante de salud frágil para convertirse en uno de los más destacados deportistas de los últimos tiempos.

Premio Principe de Asturias

Díaz was nominated for one of the world's prestigious awards "Premio Principe de Asturias" (Prince of Asturias Awards) in the Sports category. He is the first athlete from the Dominican Republic ever to be nominated for this award. There are a total of 19 nominees for the 2011 awards. Past winners of this awards have included the Spanish National futbol team (world champions), Rafael Nadal, Michael Schumacker, Lance Armstrong and Steffi Graf.

The only other open water swimmer ever to be nominated was multi-time world champion David Meca from Spain in 2004. Besides being named the World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year in 2010, Marcos also successfully completed the Swim Across The Continents.

The Prince of Asturias Awards are a series of annual prizes awarded in Spain by the Prince of Asturias Foundation to individuals, entities or organizations from around the world who make notable achievements in the sciences, humanities, and public affairs.

Swim Across The Continents

Early Life

Díaz was born on January 1975 in the city of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. He started swimming at the age of 6 as a recommendation from his doctor for the treatment of chronic asthma; disease that has affected him from birth. He joined the Club Casa de España of Santo Domingo.

From an early age Díaz participated in national and international competitions, obtaining multiple pool successes. Since then he has recognized the importance and responsibility entailed in representing his country aboard.

Athletic Accomplishments

His passion for swimming and its challenges took him to experiment with triathlons where Diaz had the opportunity to represent his country as member of the National Triathlon Team on the Caribbean Circuit as well as other international races. When experienced triathlon, Marcos discovered that endurance sports were his major interest, focusing on open water swimming.

Hombre del Año de la Natación en Aguas Abiertas Internacional 2010, otorgado por la World Open Water Swimming Association durante la Conferencia Global de Natación en Aguas Abiertas en 2011. Nueva York.

Embajador de Buena Voluntad del Programa de Desarrollo de la Naciones Unidas (PNUD-RD).

Orden al Mérito Duarte, Sánchez y Mella (Mayor distinción que se le confiere a un ciudadano en la Republica Dominicana).

Hombre del año 2006 Republica Dominicana. (Bajo encuesta nacional, Diario Libre)

Embajador Honorífico de Buena Voluntad de la República Dominicana.

Hijo ilustre de la ciudad de Santo Domingo.

Gran Premio Nacional de la Juventud (dos años consecutivos)

Llaves de la ciudad Santo Domingo Este.

Reconocimiento por la Cámara de Diputados y por el Senado de la República Dominicana.

Otros reconocimientos nacionales e internacionales.

Transition to Open Water Swimming

Diaz began to experiment and stand out in this highly dedicated swimming genre. He started with open water swims under 3 kilometers, and began to develop his love of the sea and his passion for long distance open water swimming.

In his first ultra distance swim Marcos established a national and international record by swimming 52 kilometers non-stop in a 25 meter pool. This feat, which took place in Santo Domingo in 1999 was completed in 15 hours and 27 seconds swimming back and forth non stop.

Under the direction of Augusto Garcia, Diaz focused his energies and efforts in a sport then unknown in his country. After his 52-kilometer swim, he has since represented the Dominican Republic with dignity. With each triumph, Diaz helped make the Dominican flag proudly wave higher.

Swimming Highlights

  • English Channel (England-France, 2004)
  • Strait of Gibraltar (Europe – Africa – Europe, 2005)
  • 1st place in the world’s longest amateur swimming competition in the Bhagirathi River in India (81 kilometers, 2006)
  • 3 consecutive years champion in the International Crossing of the Toroneos Gulf in Greece (2004, 2005, 2006)
  • Swimming the passage Boca Chica – Malecón in Santo Domingo (2006)
  • Adventure swim in New York, a double circumnavigation of Manhattan Island (96 kilometers with wetsuit and 2 stops, 2007)
  • World Ranking in the FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix


  • 1st place overall: Clean Half Marathon Swim, 15 kilometers in 3 hours 21 minutes in Hong Kong.
  • 1st place overall: National Open Water Swimming Championships, 16 kilometers in 3 hours 48 minutes in Bahía de Samaná, República Dominicana
  • Participation in the 34th Faros Maratón, Internacional Long Distance Swimming Championship 16 kilometers in Stari Grad, Croatia.
  • 1st place overall: 39th International Swimming Crossing of the Toroneos Gulf 26 kilometers in 6 hours 09 minutes in Halkidiki, Greece
  • 1srtplace overall: 33rd Annual Swim Around Key West, 20 kilometers in 4 hours 8 minutes in Key West, Florida, USA.
  • 9th place overall: Miami 10K Nike Swim, 10 kilómetros in Miami, Florida, USA



  • Second place in age group, 11th overall: Waikiki Roughwater Swim, 3.9 kilometers in 49 minutes 50 seconds in Waikiki, Hawaii, USA.
  • A Double Circumnavigation Around Manhattan Island: Marcos Diaz 2 Xs Manhattan was 2 complete circumnavigations around Manhattan Island, 96 kilometers in 22 hours 14 minutes in New York, USA (with wetsuit and 2 stops).
  • 1st place overall: 31st Annual Swim Around Key West, 20 kilometers in Key West, Florida, USA.
  • 6th overall position in the FINA Open Water Swimming Grand Prix 2007. The races included the following:
  *  Hernandarias-Parana, 88 kilometers in 9 hours 42 minutes in Argentina
  *  Rosario Marathon, 9 kilometers in 1 hour 31 minutes in Argentina
  *  Santa Fe-Coronda, 57 kilometers in 8 hours 5 minutes in Argentina 


  • Completes Marcos Diaz: Un Nado por su Pueblo from Boca Chica Beach to Seaside Walk of Santo Domingo. 50 kilometers in 10 hours 36 minutes in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
  • 1st place overall: 63rd World Longest Distance Amateur Swimming Competition, 81 kilometers in 10 hours 34 minutes in Murshibabad, India1st
  • 1st place overall: 36th International Swimming Crossing of the Toroneos Gulf, 26 kilometers in 6 hours 32 minutes in Halkidiki, Greece
  • 1st place overall: 30th Annual Swim Around Key West, 20 kilometers in 3 hours 54 minutes in Key West, Florida, USA1st


  • 1st place overall: Maui Channel Swim, 15.8 kilometers in 3 hours 24 minutes in Maui, Hawaii, USA
  • Set a world record in the Double Crossing of the Strait of Gibraltar: Swim Between Continents. He sets a new World Record in the Double Crossing of Strait of Gibraltar (Europe-Africa-Europe), 44 kilometers in 8 hours 34 minutes between Spain-Morocco-Spain
  • 1st place overall: 35th International Swimming Crossing of the Toroneos Gulf, 26 kilometers in 6 hours 26 minutes in Halkidiki, Greece
  • 1st place overall: 1st International Marathon Swim Across Samaná Bay, 16 kilometers in 3 hours 50 minutes in Samaná, Dominican Republic


  • First Dominican participation in a World Open Water Championship III FINA Open Water World Championships 2004, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
  • Swim across the English Channel. First Dominican to swim across from England to France, 37 kilometers in 9 hours 56 minutes
  • 1st place overall: 34th International Swimming Crossing of the Toroneos Gulf, 26 kilometers in 6 hours 29 minutes in Halkidiki, Greece
  • 7th overall: Manhattan Island Marathon Swim, 46 kilometers in 7 hours 48 minutes in New York, USA.
  • 2nd place overall: 24 mile Marathon Swim Across Tampa Bay, 38.8 kilometers in 9 hours 28 minutes in Tampa, Florida, USA
  • National Record: Swim Across the Samaná Bay, 16 kilometers in 4 hours, 16 minutes in Samaná, Dominican Republic


  • Triple national and international record of ultra distance swimming in 25 meters pool: Establishes a 60 kilometers mark of 14 hours 50 minutes. Breaks the established record of 53 kilometers and sets a new record in the 50 kilometers


  • 2nd place age group, 33rd overall: Waikiki Roughwater Swim, 3.9 kilometers in 50 minutes 19 seconds in Waikiki, Hawaii, USA
  • 3rd place overall: 24 mile Marathon Swim Across Tampa Bay 38.8 kilometers in 9 hours 03 minutes in Tampa, Florida, USA
  • Record: Swim Across the Ocoa Bay, 38 kilometers in 9 hours 17 minutes in Azua-Baní, Dominican Republic


  • 3rd place by age group and sixth overall in the 3 kilometer open water swim at LatyCar' 99. Florida, USA
  • 2st place overall: Ken Killian' s Ocean Mile Swim 1 nautical mile.
  • International Record, ultra distance swimming in a 25 meters pool: 52 kilometers in 15 hours 00 minutes 27 seconds.

Marcos Diaz Foundation

Throughout his sports career Marcos has received the warmth and support of his country and in this same way he feels committed to return this affection, contributing bit by bit in favor of the neediest. For this reason, in 2004 he starts the Marcos Díaz Foundation (Fundación Marcos Díaz) and it is from here where he carries out social work in benefit of children and youths of limited economic resources of the Dominican Republic.

External links