Best Snorkeling Destinations in the World

Here is our 2019 roundup of top snorkel destinations in the world... Enjoy!

Best Snorkeling in the Caribbean

1. Snorkeling in the Bahamas

crystal clear blue water and sand in Bahamas underwater

Located southeast of the United States, the Bahamas attracts hoards of snorkelers with its over 2,000 cays, islands, and islets scattered throughout the Atlantic Ocean.

Most of these places are uninhabited, meaning that a dive in these waters is synonymous with getting in contact with pristine scenery. Nassau, the capital of the Bahamas, is perhaps the perfect starting point of a snorkeling trip in the region.

Miles of fabulous beaches and amazing coral reefs are ready to impress even the most demanding snorkeler. Here, you can swim with tropical fish and sharks and take part in incredible festivals and events when you’re out of the water.

The Deadman’s Reef in the Paradise Cove, Western Grand Bahamas, is another spectacular place to add to your bucket list – and a great choice for snorkeling newbies.

Those looking for calmer and shallower waters will undoubtedly enjoy the Peterson Cay National Park, where you can admire vivid coral reefs and swim with colorful fish and harmless small sharks. You can also find calm waters in Great Exuma, a great place to have fun at low tide after you’ve explored the deep blue.

And for those Insta-worthy pictures, go to Big Major Cay and have a fun swim with the cute piglets the beach is famous for.

Since the Bahamas has a tropical climate, you can enjoy good weather almost all year round. However, the best snorkeling here happens from December to April. Don’t forget to bring your full-face anti-fog mask for the utmost experience.

2. Snorkeling in Mexico

swimming in a cenote waterhole in Mexico

A diver’s dream, Mexico is mostly known for its acclaimed Cancun, Tulum, and Cozumel snorkeling. Pristine waters and a variety of underwater ecosystems attract enthusiasts from around the world. What not many people know, though, is that there is life and many amazing places to discover beyond the two overrated destinations mentioned above.

In the Gulf of Mexico, for instance, there hides the sleepy Isla Holbox, just off Yucatan Peninsula; a place that has started to top the charts as one of the best ecotourism destinations in the world. Apart from the beautiful scenery you can enjoy here, swimming with whale sharks is one of the favorite activities.

These gentle giants gather in the region during the summer months and swim near the surface, feeding on plankton.

Deeper under, you can also watch the beautiful dance of manta rays, dolphins, and sea turtles.

Since this is one of the lesser-known destinations in Yucatan, there will be no crowds of tourists to disturb your snorkeling adventure.

Nestled between the Pacific Ocean and the Sea of Cortez, Los Cabos is another Mexican marvel to discover. Its coast is home to one of the oldest coral reefs, estimated to be over 20,000 years old and counting over 800 marine species.

Recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, this protected National Marine Park is a perfect destination for swimming with dolphins, whales, sharks, angelfish, and parrotfish, to name just a few.

Isla Mujeres is another amazing island in Mexico off the coast of Cancun. This small and peaceful paradise boasts unique beaches, a rich Mayan heritage, and calm, clear, shallow waters that are perfect for snorkeling.

A spot you can’t miss here is MUSA, the Underwater Art Museum that gathers over 500 life-sized and monumental sculptures.

One of the largest artificial underwater attractions in the world, MUSA, is organized in various collections that are all well worth discovering.

Whether you want to enjoy famous sculptures placed on the seafloor, admire sea turtles, or swim with the sharks, the best time to plan a snorkeling vacation in Mexico is from June to August.

3. Snorkeling in Cuba

castle of El Morro in Old Havana and sea waves

The largest island in the Caribbean, Cuba is renowned for its fantastic beaches bathed by the Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. Counting dozens of snorkeling spots and a variety of marine environments, this spectacular island awaits with seagrass meadows, mangroves, and coral reefs. 

The magnificent underwater landscapes team with marine life, including an abundance of nurse sharks, groupers, barracuda, and hundreds of colorful reef fish. 

While the coral reef cover has declined in the past decades – make sure to use a reef-friendly sunscreen while here – Cuba still has one of the most beautiful marine ecosystems in the region. 

Mostly known for Havana, the coastal regions of the country are still widely unknown to mass tourism. Limited coastal development and strict controls on commercial fishing, alongside protected marine areas, ensure unique biodiversity. 

Some of the best snorkeling spots in Cuba include the Bay of Pigs near Playa Giron, Maria la Gorda, Cayo Coco, as well as the spectacular Jardines de la Reina, an archipelago about 50 miles off the main island that was declared Marine Natural Park in 1996. 

Like most islands in the Caribbean, Cuba enjoys a tropical climate and the best time to visit is from November to April.

4. Cayman Islands Snorkeling

Stingray at Stingray City, Grand Cayman

The Cayman Islands might not top the charts when thinking of the best snorkeling destinations in the world. Yet, they offer premier snorkeling and diving spots an avid enthusiast can’t miss. 

Little Cayman is perhaps the top choice when it comes to discovering pristine underwater sceneries. 

With less than 200 souls inhabiting this tiny island, Little Cayman is home to one of the most virgin territories. Scant development and no human-caused damage to its reefs mean that the place truly deserves its Marine Park status. 

One of the world’s most magnificent underwater attractions to discover here is Bloody Bay, a breathtaking drop-off in the Caribbean. Here, snorkelers have the rare opportunity to swim over large coral cliffs and enjoy one of the most mesmerizing undersea panoramas. 

The crystal clear waters reveal countless species of fish swimming in the deep waters, and you may even spot an exemplary or two of the fascinating hawksbill turtle. 

The walls of the Bloody Bay are also teeming with creatures, including soft corals, as well as barrel and rope sponges. 

The Cayman Islands are warm and welcoming all year round, but if you want to avoid the flocks of tourists, planning a trip between March and June could be your best bet.

5. Virgin Islands Snorkeling

beach in St John, Virgin Island

Buck Island’s brilliant blue waters and the coral barrier reef stretching under the crystalline surface are just some of the reasons to plan a snorkeling trip to the Virgin Islands. Undoubtedly one of the best spots to include on your snorkeling bucket list.

The Buck Island Reef National Monument is a spectacular uninhabited island dubbed as one of the finest marine gardens in the Caribbean snorkeling scene.

Over half of the island is surrounded by amazing elkhorn corals. The reefs are home to over 250 species of fish and various marine life, while the western edge of the land is covered by the Turtle Beach, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, according to National Geographic.

As its name suggests, the beach is home to the Leatherback turtles that nest here during spring, only to be replaced by the Hawksbill and Green turtles in summer.

The tranquil waters are a great spot for snorkelers of all levels, from beginners to casual or the pros. Because the area is a protected marine environment, keep in mind that you are not allowed to touch or disturb the marine wildlife in any way, nor fish or collect shells.

6. Belize Snorkeling

blue hole belize

Ideal to visit from November to May when the subtropical climate is dry, Belize is another Caribbean marvel to visit at least once in a lifetime.

It’s home to the largest barrier reef outside Australia and impresses with a variety of marine species such as rays, eels, and a myriad of brightly colored fish. All hiding beneath the beautiful turquoise hue of the Caribbean waters.

Some of the best snorkeling options are found off the Ambergris Caye. The Hol Chan Marine Reserve is one of the most beautiful spots, but the Glover’s Reef Atoll is also worth a visit. Indeed, Glover’s Atoll boasts a rich marine life and incredible water clarity.

The shallow lagoon counts over 700 patch reefs and is ideal for an overwhelmingly relaxing snorkeling trip.

At the same time, the Hol Chan Marine Reserve gathers snorkelers who want to swim with sharks or stingrays.

The Lighthouse Reef Atoll is the most remote atoll of Belize and awaits enthusiasts with over 20 diving and snorkeling spots. Some highlights include the Blue Hole and the Half Moon Wall, two locations that boast an impressive variety of fish and other marine species. Snorkeling apart, this place is also famous for diving.

If you’ve always dreamt of seeing lionfish, the Turneffe Island Atoll could be the perfect destination for you.

This marvel of Belize stands out thanks to its shallow sea gardens that abound with lionfish, zebra fish, and other attractive species.

From March to June, you can also try your luck to swimming with whale sharks in Gladden Spit, or go to Mexico Rocks if you want to snorkel in shallow waters and admire boulder and brain corals, angelfish, and yellowtail snappers.

7. Honduras Snorkeling

fantastic reefs and clear water on Roatan Island, Honduras

Honduras is known for its luxury resorts spanning among white sand beaches and coconut tree shelters from one side of the island to the other. From all its spots, the Pigeon Cay is undeniably the postcard-perfect destination for anyone in search of unique snorkeling experiences.

This uninhabited island can be reached by boat and is the largest of Honduras’ Bay Islands. Here, the pristine over-water scenery is completed by the amazing world beneath the crystalline surface.

You can enjoy the best snorkeling in the entire Caribbean while here, as the coral reef surrounds the entire cay. Thanks to the ideal growing conditions, the bottom of the sea is dotted with an impressive variety of coral species and tropical fish highlighted by the bleached ivory sand bottom.

8. Aruba Snorkeling

Divi Dive Trees on the shoreline of Eagle Beach in Aruba

A perfect year-round destination for ocean lovers, Aruba is one of the favorite destinations in the Caribbean. Rich marine life and safe snorkeling spots make it a go-to for beginners and more experienced snorkelers alike.

Our favorite spot in Aruba is Mangel Halto. Located on the southeast coast, this turquoise lagoon impresses with stunning marine life and nice, healthy corals – some of the few healthy coral colonies in the world.

The shallow waters and miles of beautiful beaches also make this place ideal for a family vacation with your youngsters.

Boca Grandi is another awesome destination in Aruba. Nice white sand beaches, windy enough to attract kite surfers, are also perfect for swimming with the turtles on the less windy days.

If you’re looking for a calmer spot, Arashi could be your best bet. The sea is normally calm here, the lagoon is not that deep, and it’s safe to snorkel even if you’re a beginner. During your underwater adventures, it’s easy to spot blue striped snappers and French angelfish along the coastlines or swimming among the corals.

However, beginners should not adventure into the reef area. The shallow waters make it hard to navigate the spot, while currents might make it hard for you to return to the shore.

9. Bonaire & Curacao Snorkeling

Sunset at the beach in Curacao

Located off Venezuela’s northern coast, Bonaire is another premier snorkeling destination in the Caribbean. The beauty of this place is that you don’t have to go to a specific spot; just take a plunge anywhere in the water and get ready to discover the fantastic world underneath. 

Shallow underwater terraces teeming with colorful fish intertwine with deeper areas that also attract divers. 

If you really want the name of a spot, Los Roques Archipelago National Park might be the right destination. 

Made up of about 50 islands rising atop the most crystalline water, this archipelago is a true heaven on Earth for snorkeling enthusiasts. From amazing coral reefs to expanses of turtle-grass and massive sand flats, the underwater world here is simply stunning. 

Indeed, here, you can admire some of the healthiest and most bio-diverse reefs in the Caribbean. While swimming in these waters, remember the elementary rules that say you don’t have to touch anything – and don’t forget to use your biodegradable sunscreen. 

At a stone’s throw away from Bonaire, Curacao also awaits with its 12-mile long Underwater Marine Park, stretching along the southern coastline of the island. 

Here, you can admire vast coral gardens, swim with nurse sharks, discover sunken ships, and witness a wide variety of exotic marine life. The best part is that the park has many marked trails that not only help you find your way, but that also helps you identify what you’re seeing. 

10. Snorkeling in Tobago

Englishman's Bay, Tobago

Dubbed as one of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean, Tobago features a variety of beaches and a myriad of spots that can attract most snorkeling fanatics. 

The Englishman’s Bay is one of the loveliest, a white sand beach gently sloping towards the coral reefs. The coral garden here is simply spectacular; home to colorful soft corals and amazing marine life, it’s a perfect spot for swimming with the moray eels, stingrays, and octopuses. 

Away from the crowds, the Pirate’s Bay is a must-see if you’re a fan of the Robinson Crusoe movies. Legends apart, this bay accessible via a tricky dirt track or by boat is home to shoals of tropical fish and stunning coral structures. 

Here, you can also admire a big colony of sea urchins and sponges, or swim with the turtles. 

For sustainable snorkeling, signing up for a tour organized by the Environmental Research Institute Charlotteville (ERIC) could be your best bet. If you want to avoid the afternoon rain, the best time to visit is from January to May. 

11. St.Lucia Snorkeling

twin piton peaks and volcano mountains Soufriere St. Lucia island

Nestled in the Eastern Caribbean, St. Lucia is home to volcanic beaches, luxury resorts intertwined with fishermen villages, tapered mountains, and reef diving sites.

One of the best snorkeling spots on the island is Anse Chastanet. Made up of silvery sands and surrounded by steep forested hills, the beach is only the entryway into a dreamy underwater world.

Abundant marine life comprises schools of parrotfish, moray eels, turtles, peacock flounders, needlefish, and octopus, swimming in a silent dance among the dense coral reef. If you’re lucky, you might even spot some puffers and sea horses while snorkeling in these waters.

12. Dominica Snorkeling

Sandwich Beach, Thibaud, Dominica,

Moving on with our list of top snorkeling destinations around the world and still in the Caribbean, we have Dominica.

The island’s most spectacular spot is the Champagne Reef. Filled with unspoiled natural beauty, this unique place is known for its intense geothermal activity that pushes subterranean water through tiny cracks in the seafloor.

These warm bubbles look like champagne bubbles rising from the ground, hence the name of the reef.

Apart from the spectacular landscape, marine wildlife will surely enhance your snorkeling experience.

Indeed, here you can swim with parrotfish, lobsters, seahorses, and frogfish while admiring the stunning hard and soft coral gardens beneath.

Bermuda Snorkeling

bermuda beach view from air

Located in the Atlantic Ocean, off the east coast of North America, Bermuda is known worldwide for its mysterious triangle but also for its amazing beaches and snorkeling spots. From all the places you could discover here, two definitely stand out.

One is the Church Bay that impresses with a spectacular ribbon of reefs located quite close to the shore. This gorgeous location thrives with marine life, but it’s not the best place for inexperienced snorkelers.

The other is Tobacco Bay, at the east end of the island. Shallower waters and lots of rocky coves are perfect to explore a different underwater world and observe the myriad of blue parrotfish swimming around the huge rocks.

Besides these two famous spots, you can also snorkel in West Whale Bay. This secluded beach is never crowded; just make sure to check the tide times before going.

Beyond the beach, you can also go shipwreck hunting in spots such as the Western Blue Cut. This opening in a reef off the north shore and the graveyard of two ships, Constellation and Montana is located just an hour away from the mainland.

Both wrecks can be seen clearly while snorkeling, while the sea life is also abundant and attractive.

The Sea Garden is another noteworthy snorkeling place in Bermuda, an underwater oasis of marine flora and fauna, including brain corals, damselfish, parrotfish, and more.

For the best experience, it is recommended to plan your trip between May and December.

Red Sea Snorkeling

beach in Sharm el Sheikh, Egypt

The Middle East might not be the first snorkeling destination that comes to mind when planning a trip. Yet, the Red Sea impresses with dozens of amazing spots in Israel, Jordan, and Egypt.

Jordan, for instance, offers endless underwater shows to its snorkelers. Boasting about 17 miles of coastline along the Red Sea, this is one of the less crowded snorkeling destinations in the world.

Despite the lack of popularity, the place impresses with a huge variety of soft corals, including 16 endemic species, and over 2,000 species of fish and invertebrates. In these waters, you can spot clownfish in their anemones, angelfish, goldfish, and a variety of sea turtles.

Egypt also enjoys a particularly mild climate all year round, and the waters of the Red Sea are protected from the ocean currents in most months.

Most snorkeling spots here are accessible from the shore, while resorts such as those in Sharm El-Sheik or Hurghada can truly pamper you when you’re out of the water.

Snorkeling in the Indian Ocean

13. Snorkeling in Oman

aerial view of oman beaches

With over 1,500 miles of coastline, Oman is filled with unique yet widely undiscovered snorkeling locations. Unspoiled islands scattered along the coast offer the perfect diving spots for swimming with the whale sharks or admiring sea turtles and anemone fish.

The Daymaniyat Islands are home to the first marine reserve in the country and a fantastic option for your trip.

The Western Indian Ocean impresses with a variety of surgeonfish, coral species, clownfish, moray eels, and other common species found in the shallow reef areas, as well as an abundant colony of green turtles.

Nutrient-rich sea waters also attract mobula rays. This impressive destination has a warm, dry climate all year round, but summers can get extremely hot. Visiting from September to April is perhaps the best you could do if you want to avoid the blistering sun.

14. Maldives Snorkeling

maldives view of snorkel beach

One of the most beautiful places on Earth and undeniably one of the top snorkeling destinations, the Maldives attract with amazing underwater sights.

This tiny island is home to 700 species of fish and a multitude of other marine wonders. Numerous undersea gardens and crystal clear waters, including 1,200 Insta-perfect coral islands, are just some of the reasons to come.

Here, you can swim with vivid species of fish, admire octopuses, sharks, and manta rays.

While the entire island is a true marvel, the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve Baa Atoll is perhaps the most attractive. Home to one of the largest groups of corals in the Indian Ocean, it’s also home to hundreds of mantas that flock in the bay from June to November.

15. Seychelles Snorkeling

Tropical beaches La Digue

Seychelles is a true paradise, a postcard-perfect destination for those in search of some winter sun or just a nice spot for their snorkeling vacation. An outing in the crystalline azure waters that surround the archipelago is a must regardless of your level.

Sumptuous sandy beaches descending into the translucent waters will already make you dream of the wonders beneath the waves.

An abundance of manta rays, reef sharks, leopard rays, whale sharks, and hawksbill turtles will impress you with their mesmerizing dance. Some of the best islands for your trip include Saint Pierre, Denis Island, Coco Island, and the Port Launay Park.

16. Mozambique Snorkeling

Traditional sail boat called a dhow, Vilanculos, Mozambique

Mozambique is more synonymous with good food and sandy beaches than excellent diving and snorkeling. Nevertheless, let this country impress you with its miles of coastlines and numerous islands that make it a noteworthy snorkeling destination.

The ocean waters here are subject to the warm Agulhas current and are the ideal spot for beginners to gain some experience.

There are many well-known reefs but also less crowded spots waiting to be discovered.

Whale sharks and manta rays typically gather around the Tofo and Barra peninsula. Dolphins populate the area of Maputo, on the southern side of the country.

Besides snorkeling, you can also have fun on an ocean safari trip or enjoy dinner with a view on board a private boat.

17. Western Australia Snorkeling

beaches of Rottnest island

Nestled in the Indian Ocean, Western Australia is home to the largest fringing reef in the world, a UNESCO World Heritage site and a marine park covering over 7,000 miles.

Undoubtedly one of the top snorkeling destinations, this marine park boasts abundant colonies of sea lions, reef sharks, whale sharks, manta rays, wild dolphins, and sea turtles. A must-go in the area is also the Ningaloo Reef, the only place on earth where various species of tropical fish, manta rays, whale sharks, and sea turtles live together.

Off the southern coast of the country, the Rottnest Island is a class A marine reserve where you can admire seals alongside tropical fish.

The Lord Howe Island is another World Heritage location and the perfect snorkeling destination for families. Numerous spots include the Lagoon Beach, but also the calm Old Settlement Beach, where kids and beginners can have their fair share of fun while exploring the deep blue.

For a different snorkeling experience, the Jervis Bay is another must-go destination renowned for its penguins, seals, dolphins, and whales.

Indo Pacific Snorkeling Destinations

18. Snorkeling in Thailand

Thailand is one of the most beautiful exotic countries in the Indo-Pacific area, and also a top snorkeling destination in the world. It has two main marine areas, the Gulf of Thailand and the South China Sea to the east and the Andaman Sea and the Indian Ocean to the West.

With such a rich choice of diving spots, finding the right destination in Thailand shouldn’t be too hard, regardless of your preparation level.

Along the Gulf of Thailand, the most acclaimed snorkeling sites include the Ko Chang Marine National Park, an area ideal for visiting from April to October. Besides Ko Chang, the Ko Tao area – defined as a snorkeling mecca – is also worth a visit while visiting eastern Thailand.

Andaman Island, on the other hand, is a great choice in the winter months, normally from November to April. You won’t find the clearest waters here, but the abundance of marine life around the Similan Island is sure to impress.

A natural reserve since 1982, the Similan Island is a world-class snorkeling destination, boasting an array of marine life.

Phi Phi island is another go-to area if you want to swim with the leopard sharks and blacktip reef sharks. Other nearby locations include Maya Bay and the Monkey beach.

19. Snorkeling in Indonesia

Not far away from Thailand, Indonesia awaits with other wonderful locations. The most popular place for snorkeling is by far the Komodo National Park.

Komodo is, indeed, home to over 1,000 species of fish and over 250 types of coral. In the area also live 14 types of endangered whales as well as giant turtles and dolphins. If that’s not enough, know that you can also admire other species of fish alongside a flourishing coral reef.

The Pink Beach is another snorkeling hot spot where you can admire fascinating underwater inhabitants.

Raja Ampat, in the West Papua province, has the greatest concentration of marine life for such a small region and is home to a whopping 75 percent of all known coral species in the world. This marine oasis also boasts over 1,000 types of fish, sharks, manta rays, and sea turtles.

This island is rather isolated, but that’s what makes it an amazing destination if you’re looking for a less crowded location.

20. Snorkeling in Malaysia

Owning hundreds of islands and over 2,000 miles of coastline, Malaysia has impressive biodiversity and holds about 30% of the coral reefs on earth. Ideal to visit from October to April, it invites snorkelers of all levels.

One of the best locations is Sabah, a Malaysian state counting about 400 islands and home to over 75% of the country’s reefs. Some of the corals live quite close to the water surface and provide food and shelter to a variety of species, including clownfish, reef sharks, and green turtles.

Borneo is another beautiful destination to visit, giving its best in the month of April.

In front of Sabah, the Tunku Abdul Rahman Marine Park consists of five amazing islands, each renowned for its own characteristics. However, Langkayan is probably the most beautiful, attracting abundant colonies of rays, sharks, turtles, and coral reefs.

Pacific Ocean Snorkeling Destinations

21. Philippines Snorkeling

The Philippines are not the most obvious snorkeling destination; yet, the waters surrounding the 7,000 islands in the archipelago are home to a unique ecosystem filled with breathtaking landscapes and marine wildlife. 

When it comes to snorkeling opportunities here, you’ll be spoiled with choices. The Bay of Donsol area is ideal for those who want to swim with the sharks or visit the coral reefs. 

In fact, whale sharks gather here between November and June, attracted by the rich nutrients coming from the mouth of the river. 

Whether it’s a boat tour or snorkeling in its pristine waters, stunning Palawan offers the perfect snorkeling experience for everyone. Here, you can admire larger marine wildlife, swim in fish-filled lagoons, or explore the nearby reefs. 

22. Micronesia Snorkeling

Micronesia’s snorkeling hot spot is undoubtedly Palau. This small republic attracts with its shallow, crystalline waters and healthy reefs that create the right habitat for a variety of species.

Snorkeling off the shores of Palau gives you high opportunities to encounter marine life such as sharks, manta rays, tropical fish, and turtles.

For a different snorkeling experience, the Jellyfish Lake is the place to go. This isolated lake is quite hard to reach, but the effort is well worth it. Filled with millions of harmless jellyfish, it gives all snorkelers the possibility to swim with these fascinating creatures without worrying about getting a nasty sting from one of them.

23. Melanesia Snorkeling

Extending from New Guinea island in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, Melanesia is anther amazing region that should top your bucket list if you’re dreaming about the ultimate snorkeling experience in Oceania.

Amazingly diverse and wonderfully relaxed, Melanesia impresses with numerous pristine marine ecosystems and abundant marine wildlife.

Perhaps the best location in the region is New Caledonia and its largest lagoon in the world. Beyond corals, sea turtles and a variety of tropical fish populate the translucent waters of the region.

The remote and pristine islands of Solomon are also home to various ecosystems and unique habitats, while the reefs of Fiji boast astounding biodiversity and are dubbed the world’s soft coral capital.

With such a wide variety of choices, the hardest part is to decide where to start your snorkeling trip in Melanesia.

24. Papua New Guinea Snorkeling

If you’d like to combine your snorkeling trip with a cultural experience like no other, then you should add Papua New Guinea to your bucket list.

Located north of Australia in the so-called Coral Triangle, this island and its offshore islets evoke a sense of wonder and attract tourists thanks to their remote, unexplored location.

This is one of the most diverse places on earth, as the nation boasts over 700 tribes. The diversity found on land is also easy to find beneath the waves. Thanks to the remote location and rather scarce tourism, here you can admire pristine reefs and plentiful wildlife.

Besides the wonders of the marine ecosystems, you can also explore some shipwrecks from the Second World War that are now home to impressive barracudas, snappers, reef sharks, and tuna fish.

25. French Polynesia Snorkeling

French Polynesia is one of the most popular destinations for whale watching and home to gorgeous humpback whales from August to October. Besides swimming with this huge cetacean, the crystal clear waters give you plenty of snorkeling opportunities.

Bora Bora snorkeling is undeniably the highlight of the region, a place where you can admire, swim, or even touch the stingrays. Indeed, these “water puppies” how they are called here, have an affinity for humans and often come and ask for attention even if you have no intention of touching them. Just pay attention to never swim directly over them or step on their poisonous tail.

This place is also where you can get close to sharks in the shallow tropical waters of the reefs. Some of the most common species are the blacktip reef shark and the lemon shark, and you can also spot a wide variety of colorful tropical fish and turtles.

26. Snorkeling Australia's Great Barrier Reef

Last but not least, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia tops the charts as one of the best snorkeling destinations in the world.

The huge reef is made up of almost 3,000 individual reefs stretching over 1,400 miles off the continent’s shoreline. Home to one of the most diverse ecosystems in the world, the Great Barrier Reef area boasts an array of barracudas, manta rays, tropical fish, alongside shipwrecks.

An easy place to start your exploration is Whitsunday Island, right off the shore of Queensland. Here, you can admire over 1,000 species of fish and six varieties of sea turtles.

As global warming takes its toll on the marine environment, some areas are already bleached, though, and the experts suggest that the reef could become extinct by 2050.

So, if you want to experience the unrivaled beauty of this place before it’s too late, make sure to follow the strictest guidelines and produce a minimal impact on the already fragile ecosystem while snorkeling in its waters.

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