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Best shore snorkeling in world ???

Discussion in 'Snorkeling / Freediving' started by altarose, Mar 17, 2010.

  1. altarose

    altarose Nassau Grouper

    Greetings All, We are avid snorkelers, have been to Cuba, Akumal,Dominican Republic, Hawaii, Costa Rica,Honduras, and just got back from Puerto Rico. Every year we try to find a location with as good or better shore snorkeling than the last trip.

    If you could go any where in the world, where would be your favorite destination?

  2. gcbryan

    gcbryan Solo Diver

    # of Dives:
    Location: Seattle
    I've snorkeled in Kauai, Oahu, southern Thailand, Roatan (Honduras), Isla Margarita (Venezuela) and I enjoyed Kauai the best.

    I'm sure there are better spots in the world but the Na Pali Coast is so beautiful and the island of Kauai itself has so many beaches where you can just stop the car and jump in that it's the place that I enjoy the most.

    Second choice would be in the south of Thailand but again a lot of that has to do with the surface aspect as well.
  3. David Wilson

    David Wilson Manta Ray

    The best shore snorkelling spots for me are never remote tropical resorts whose only reason for existence is snorkelling or diving. Over the decades, I've particularly enjoyed snorkelling in the Mediterranean, La Jolla Cove near San Diego in Southern California and a swimming lake in what was then the capital of the German Democratic Republic. What all these venues had in common was that the local people, not just tourists, were enjoying snorkelling too.

    These days, now I'm in my sixties, the best shore snorkelling destination in the world for me is just eight miles from where I live in the North East of England. The water is cold (a simple drysuit keeps me warm), the aquatic flora and fauna are conspicuous by their absence and my only company are people walking their dogs. The rising sun is spectacular, however, and the sea is blissful when the waves are calm. The snorkelling experience there relaxes me, provides me with some gentle exercise and is the ideal start for my day. I feel terrific after my morning dip. I'm not a bit envious of my compatriots who regularly leave our island with its myriad sandy beaches, surrounded by sea, for resorts in Egypt, the Caribbean and the Indian Ocean. Why would I want to travel to a crowded airport, find my plane is delayed or cancelled, pay extra because my snorkelling fins exceed my baggage allowance, endure airline food and a cramped seat for hours, stay in resort hotels which the local people can't afford, far from cities of cultural and historical interest? For me, now I'm retired, snorkelling is all about spontaneity, the ability to look out of my bedroom window at home in the hope that the weather favours snorkelling. If the signs are good, I pack my snorkelling gear in my car and head off for an hour's snorkelling at the coast. On the way, I see swans, ducks and occasionally a fox. When I reach the seaside, I may see a fishing boat bobbing in the bay, seagulls overhead, sometimes a seal. It's a picture postcard scene. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and we don't have to travel far to find it.

    You don't have to come to the North East of England to share my enjoyment of the simple pleasure of snorkelling. Rediscover the places where you first snorkelled and try to recapture the joy you experienced when you first tried out our great pastime. Here's a photograph from a British book about snorkelling and diving from the 1950s:
    The caption reads: "If underwater swimming is not fun, it's not anything". I suspect the family was snorkelling somewhere in the United Kingdom, not some tropical paradise.

    The early skin divers of the Mediterranean and Southern California were all local people who didn't see the point of travelling great distances to enjoy the experience. If you're always trying to outdo last year's snorkelling vacation by seeking out more and more distant and exclusive destinations, you may run out of places to go and your constantly rising expectations will never be satisfied.
    crayolabarb likes this.
  4. dano2036

    dano2036 Guest

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Bishopville Md
    I like shacks in puerto rico.
  5. vladimir

    vladimir Solo Diver

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    On a liveaboard trip from Komodo to Bali, we anchored in a small cove that had virgin reef right up to the shore. In two meters of water you could find the sort of richness and diversity that you rarely find on any reef, anywhere. I didn't forget the name of the island: unfortunately I never knew it.
  6. ScubaSteve

    ScubaSteve Wow.....what a DB

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Acton, Ontario
    I was in Thailand in Nov/Dec 2009 and the best snorkelling I have ever seen is hands down KOH ROCK off Koh Lanta. While I generally am not wowed by snorkelling (since I am a diver first), this was great IMO.
  7. diver_doug

    diver_doug Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 100 - 199
    Location: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
    This is an easy one...Long Beach, California. I've seen visibility as high as 3 FEET!!! One time I even saw a baby eel that looked just like a floating condom (wait, maybe that's what it was). Eat your heart out Australia!!!! Hope this helps.
  8. robint

    robint Orca

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Albuquerque, NM
    Bonaire Bonaire Bonaire!

    best shore snorkeling and diving in the world. It is the shore diving capital of the world because reefs are so close to shore. This makes for amazing snorkeling, too!

    webcams all over island:
    Bonaire WebCams - The Works - All the WebCams and Weather and UW Temperature on One Page!


    my diving videos:
    Bonaire, 2007 on Vimeo
    these are scuba diving, but you can see in many cases how close to the surface I am!

    here is diving right in front of Buddy Dive resort, most of the dive is in less than 40' water!

    water is clear, very little current, easy easy easy snorkeling and diving!

    at one dive site, Andrea II, a school of 20+ squid met us as we were heading towards shore. They didn't want us to leave. We spent the last 10 minutes of the dive with them, in 5' deep water! AMAZING! Then as we got out, 2 of the larger ones followed us all the way into shore. I got out of water and one was next to my foot in 6" deep water! It was one of the coolest experiences in my entire life!

  9. Teamcasa

    Teamcasa Sr. Moderator Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Near Pasadena, CA
    I'm told, Tahiti was pretty amazing but I'm a sucker for Kauai.
  10. Dave C

    Dave C Manta Ray

    You have been to so many places yourself - does any one spot stand out above the rest?

    I have yet to find the "best" shore snorkeling spot, but I'm sure the best would be found in the western Pacific - Indian Ocean region. There is so much more species diversity there than in the Caribbean or Hawaii. Consistently I see some of the best shallow-water photos coming from two places: Maldives or Red Sea. Fantastic visibilty, corals, and fish diversity. Indonesia and the Philippines would also be very good. All these places are a long way from North America, however.

    My experience is that Belize has the best snorkeling in the Caribbean, but most of it is not convenient from shore. Hawaii has some pretty Indo-Pacific fish, but the coral is not that great, and I often found surge to be a problem. In the winter months in Hawaii, you frequently have to snorkel in tiny protected coves which doesn't allow for much freedom to explore.

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