Best spots to go snorkelling

Keeping your head above water just means you’re missing out on a world of
adventure below the waves. Find the best places to snorkel and discover everything
that’s worth swimming to see.

Most people don't plan their holiday around snorkelling. It’s probably because they remember once buying a leaky plastic mask from a gift shop in Brighton and ducking their head under a cold, grey sea to see a bit more cold, grey sea. As ever, the trick to finding the best snorkelling in the world is location, location, location – with dives in florescent coral reefs, bath-warm lagoons and crystal-clear seas providing some of the most spectacular natural vistas around.

The Maldives

Comprised of 1,192 coral islands, The Maldives form an archipelago unlike anywhere else on Earth. One of the key attractions of this fabulous destination is its staggering array of marine life, with over 240 varieties of coral providing a home to more than 1,000 species of fish. From sharks and rays to turtles and tropical fish, it’s a fantastic place to snorkel, and the Kani and Finolhu Villas resorts are perfectly situated right beside the sea for an easy stroll from your bedroom to the shallows.


It’s impossible to talk about snorkelling holidays without mentioning The Great Barrier Reef – one of the wonders of the natural world. Made up of 2,900 individual reefs that cover almost 1,500 miles of shoreline, it’s the world’s largest coral reef, supporting over 30 species of whale and more than 1,500 species of fish. That diversity of life and colour beneath the surface is a stunning spectacle of the marine world that means every dive will be a unique and memorable experience.

Turks and Caicos Islands

Right where the West Indies meets the North Atlantic, the waters of the Turks and Caicos offer a unique ecosystem in calm, crystal clear seas. The Turkoise resort is a great place to explore the exquisite Caicos Barrier Reef in Grace Bay, with smaller reefs for kids to snorkel, Malcolm’s Road Beach, close to the deep wall drop-off, for experienced divers, and the Bright Reef coral gardens of full of turtles and rays for everyone in between.


Second only to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the keys and atolls of the Caribbean coast in Belize provide enough to explore for a lifetime of snorkelling. Pick a resort near Ambergris Caye and the Hol Chan Marine Reserve for the best dive spots, including the unforgettable experience of Shark Ray Alley – home to a horde of (harmless) nurse sharks and stingrays that don’t mind you swimming with them.


Mauritius is perfect for snorkelling, as the whole island is enclosed by a coral reef. Blue Bay Marine Park is probably the best place to start, as the shallow depth and perfect visibility makes it ideal for beginners (great for kids who want to spot Nemo too, as the Clownfish population here is soaring). Pointe aux Piments, near La Pointe aux Canonniers, is the place to snorkel with sea turtles and Flic en Flac [close to La Plantation d’Albion gets the most parrotfish, but it’s Ile aux Cerfs, just off the East Coast, that offers something for everyone – truly one of the world’s greatest dive spots.


The exclusive resorts around Nusa Dua, in Bali, have a good reputation for a reason. One of the best and most beautiful areas for swimming in the world, the south-eastern tip of the island is cupped by a spectacular reef that’s broad enough to hold back the currents of the Indian Ocean, and diverse enough to house tropical marine habitats that are unlike anywhere else in the region. Menjangan Island in the North, Nusa Lembongan further south, and Pandangbai in the east are all great alternatives too.

The Seychelles

The first thing you notice about The Seychelles is the colour. With blues, greens and golds unlike anything you’ve seen before, the tiny Indian Ocean paradise looks slightly unreal. And then you swim beneath the water… Finding a good snorkelling spot in the Seychelles is as easy as stepping off the nearest beach – with neon blue water, vivid reefs and rare wildlife surrounding each island, offering some of the most memorable underwater experiences in the world.

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