Top 5 Snorkel Spots to Visit Before You Die
aerial view of palau islands

At Snorkel Venture we have been exceptionally lucky to have travelled to a vast number of places across the planet. On our travels, we have snorkeled some of the world’s best destinations; anything from pristine coral reefs to extraordinary untouched reef systems forgotten from time.

As a result, we have decided to share with you our Top 5 Snorkel Spots to visit before you die:

1. Bunaken Island, Indonesia

Not everyone has heard of Bunaken, if you have stumbled across this article, then lucky you as you are in for a treat.

The Bunaken National Marine Park is submerged and made up of a collection of small islands of the northern coast of Sulawesi. The marine park was founded as recently as 1991, which means you have pristine reef systems loaded with fish, colours and virtually no other visitors.

Things to look out for – Bunaken is a magical place with thousands of fish and rainbow coloured coral forests. You can see everything from butterflyfish, parrotfish, boxfish, clownfish…. the list goes on.

2. Belize

Belize has recently emerged as one of the leading snorkeling destinations. The barrier reef system that runs off the Caribbean coastline is one of the largest in the world, unsurprisingly with that accolade comes an astonishing array of places to snorkel.

Top destination – it is hard not to mention the famous ‘Blue Hole’, but visiting the Turneffe Atoll and Glover’s reef is an absolute must which is a paradise for snorkeling.

Things to look out for – Everything from sharks, stingrays, turtles and barracudas, not forgetting a vast array of exotic fish found in every crook and cranny.

3. Jardine de la Reina, Cuba

Cuba is a destination that has reared its head in recent times, it’s known for its rich cultural delights with few people seeming to realize the wonders of the marine world that can be found in the Jardine de la Reina national park.

The waters here are blissfully warm with fantastic visibility where you can see right up to 40m.

Things to look out for: fringing corals reefs to seagrass beds which play host to a diverse range of marine life from large pelagic to small colorful reef fish and critters. The vibrant reefs are characterized by fields of soft corals and Gorgonian fans. Look out for the huge Goliath Grouper too.

4. Raja Ampat (West Papua, Indonesia)

school of batfish in coral reef

How on earth do you not name Raja Ampat in a list of top places to snorkel before you die? If you haven’t heard of it, google its name and look at the images which will have you packing your bags before you can say the word ‘snorkel’.

It’s hard to find anywhere else as good as Raja Ampat, the marine systems found around the thousands of islets are incredibly rich with the region holding the greatest concentration of marine life in the world.

Warm water temperatures, sterling visibility and the range of snorkel spots on offer add to Raja Ampat’s wonder.

Things to look out for – You will not struggle to find extraordinary marine life here, in each direction you turn something different and wonderful. Masses of schooling fish, rich coral gardens, bommies and slopes.

5. The Philippines

Green sea turtle swimming over coral reef

Some people seem surprised when we say The Philippines is up there as one of our favorite places to snorkel.

The reason why?

The wealth and range of reef sites that you can discover are exceptional. Consider the fact the Philippines is made up of over 7000 islands, many of which are uninhabited. These islands are surrounded by fringing reefs and a dizzying variety of marine life ready to encounter.

Things to look out for – It’s not only the marine life that is good, topside you have breath-taking countryside, lovely curries and white sand beaches to relax on.

About Author

Alex Lindbloom
Alex is a Snorkel Venture and Dive Safari Asia guide as well as the video and photo pros for both companies. Alex is also a field editor for a popular underwater photography magazine. Prior to joining Snorkel Venture in 2018 Alex lived and worked all over the world working as an underwater cameraman, with five of those years living/working on a yacht in Indonesia. Alex's images and videos have garnered many international awards such as Underwater Photographer of the Year and can be seen on NatGeo, Discovery Channel, the UN Building, and various magazines.