Best Snorkeling Spots in the Caribbean
The Caribbean has some of the best dive sites in the world. However, it takes more than clear blue water to make a good snorkeling destination. A good snorkeling site should have calm waters, and a water depth of around 7 to 21 feet. High swells can push you into rocks or hundreds of feet from your original starting point.
Another consideration is ease of accessibility to your snorkeling site. Try to choose a spot that can be reached quickly by swimming or by boat. Snorkeling locations are sometimes nice if you are fortune enough to have perks such as shops to rent gear, hire a guide, or get a cold drink following your dive. Once you find a location that is of interest to you, enjoy your dive viewing the marine life, sea shells, or shipwrecks. From the smallest marine animals to the majestic shipwrecks, snorkelers who visit the Caribbean will experience a world of adventure. For this article, I have made a list of some of the better snorkeling destinations, which have the potential of being a great vacation. Hopefully you will find the perfect destination for your excursion.
Eleuthera is located fifty miles from Nassau, Bahamas. This island is 112 miles long and only two mile wide. Eleuthera is known for its unusual mixture of quite communities, resorts, and fishing. Also this island is known for its wetlands caves, spectacular coral and pink sandy beaches. Eleuthera is blessed to have many lagoons and ponds, which makes it a good location for water sports. Another interesting activity could be to explore the shipwreck at Pineapple Dock.
One of it's biggest attractions is the fantastic snorkeling. With hundreds of shallow reefs and abundant marine life, this destination has the makings of a wonderful trip. When visiting here you will see many species of tropical fish, stingrays, sharks and beautiful coral formations, including a variety of beautiful shells. If you dive on the Caribbean side of the island, the shells found there have the potential of being quite beautiful. Some shells types found here include butterfly shells, tulips, sea biscuits and sand dollars. With hundreds of beaches and snorkeling locations such as Tarpum bay, Millar's beach, and Harbor Island, there is sure to be a snorkeling destination in the Bahamas to meet your needs.
La Parguera, Puerto Rico
One of the best locations for diving and snorkeling in the Caribbean is La Parguera, Puerto Rico. The coral reefs found here are considered to be one of the best coral reefs found in this part of the Caribbean. Also, La Parguera is believed to be among the best dive destinations in the world. The waters found here in southwest Puerto Rico are spectacular and calm, making them ideal for diving or snorkeling. One of the main attractions in this area is a twenty-two mile reef called "The Wall." The wall starts at about 55 ft. of water and drops to just over 1500 ft.
In addition to "The Wall," there are many small islands and cays which are suitable for snorkeling also. La Parguera is also know as one of a few destinations in Puerto Rico that is a Phosphorescent Bay; this in it self can make nightly snorkeling interesting. Other activities popular in this location include sailing, shelling, fishing, and diving.
If you are the type person that can spend the whole day on the beach or snorkeling, Anegada is for you. This island is located in the Northern British Virgin Islands, and it is the least populated of the big islands. This island is a haven for the outdoor person.
Anegada is known for its beautiful beaches and its abundance of seashells. Also this island is surrounded by a coral reef, and there are over 500 ships wrecks along the reef, which has the makings of an interesting adventure in itself. For the snorkeler, some good beach destinations include Loblolly, Smuggler's Cove, and near by Virgin Gorda. If you want to immerse yourself into beaches and snorkeling, this island is for you.
St. Croix, Virgin Islands
The Virgin Islands are known to have some of the best snorkeling in the world and St. Croix is no different. One location that is popular among snorkelers is Buck Island. This reef located two miles off St. Croix's North shore is known for its abundant marine life as well as various corals, shells, and crustaceans. Look all you want but don't plan on taking any shells or other souvenirs. This area is protected by the National Park Service. With it's bays and deserted coves ready for exploring, this is one of the best places for snorkels.
Another great location for snorkelers is Cain Bay. This location is know around the world as a great snorkeling and diving destination. Located close to the beach is the famous "Cain Bay Wall." This wall starts at thirty feet and drops to over 2000 feet. For the first timer, there are tours available from Cain Bay Dive shop here in St. Croix. The tours offered will allow the customer to set their own pace and choose from a variety of options. Other great locations for snorkeling include Monk's Bath, Divi Divi, Changes in L'Attitude and Butler Bay know for its shells. Also if wrecked ships fascinate you, St. Croix has those too. If snorkeling or diving turns you on this may be the place for you.
With a large number of tourist visiting here for the diving and snorkeling, the Caymans Islands are one of the busiest destinations in the Caribbean. This island can be crowded, but it can still be a memorable vacation. One area of interest is the wrecked ships. If you are into exploring old ships, this activity can be enjoyable. The Cayman's are also known for its abundant marine life, coral reefs and clear waters. One of the islands most popular snorkeling destinations is Stingray City.
Other popular snorkeling destinations in Grand Cayman include Seven Mile Beach, known for its convenient location to many of the resorts, villa and condos. Another popular location is Smith cove located on the South side; this beach is known for it's superb snorkeling. One last destination is Cemetery Reef known for its excellent snorkeling. If you are attracted to the beauty of the Caymans and the lack of modern conveniences isn't a problem, Cemetery Reef is a must visit. Whether you are looking for adventure or just a few days away from it all, Grand Cayman can be the place for you.
The clear waters and coral reef around St Lucia offer a wide variety of dives and a natural setting to suit the needs of any visitor.
For those visiting there, some of the best snorkeling is found in the waters of Ance Chastnet Beach. This location in known by its large palm trees and its rolling hills, which is an interesting contrast to the beach. Because boats aren't allowed and the reef has a few shallow areas, this location is especially good for first time snorkelers. On the shallow end, the reef is five to twenty-five foot deep. On the deep end, the depth goes down to 140 feet. Because of the bright colors, variety of marine life, and clear waters found here, this is a popular location for photographers. One popular activity of visitors includes exploring the wrecked ships found there.
If you are looking for a destination with world class snorkeling, beautiful beaches and colorful diverse marine life, you will find this Caribbean destination appealing.
Aruba is known for offering a snorkeling experiences unlike other locations. When looking underwater, you will see a dazzling array of colorful fish and coral
Although Aruba is sometimes passed over as a primary diving spot, this island has some of the best best snorkeling in the Caribbean. Aruba is home to plenty of marine life, coral, and a few shipwrecks to explore. Its waters have a visibility of 60 to 90 feet, giving snorkelers plenty to view beneath the waves. Aruba is not a place to go for collecting sea shells, but if you look you may be surprised by what you find. With different underwater attractions there such as Boca Catalina, Bachelors Beach, De Palm Island and other popular snorkeling destinations you are sure to find activities to your liking.
More by this Author
The ABC Islands are known for their beautiful beaches, world class dive sites and having a great night life. Located a few miles north of Venezuela in the southern Caribbean, this group is made of Bonaire, Aruba and...
Caribbean vacations are among the most relaxing and affordable holidays. For advice about how to plan your trip, consult this guide ranking the top ten islands to visit with specific tips.
Find some off-the-beaten-path destinations for your next vacation.