Don’t hold your breath while planning your next snorkel adventure

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Snorkeling unlocks a new world underneath the water’s surface. This aquatic activity has been gaining popularity as a relaxing and fun way to spend a vacation. Not every body of water is snorkeling water. Murky waters hide the colorful creatures that swim through them, and clear waters above a plain, sandy ocean floor are boring. Don’t hold your breath waiting to plan your next snorkel vacation. These destinations boast some of the most magical snorkeling scenes under the sea.

Say “hola” to snorkeling in the Caribbean

The MUSA Underwater Museum of Art is one of the most fascinating places to snorkel in the world. The project is located in the crystal Caribbean waters around Cancun, Mexico. Over 500 unique sculptures rest on the ocean floor. This exhibit draws visitors away from other snorkel sites, which helps preserve the Caribbean’s natural ecosystems. Also located on the Yucatán Peninsula, Isla Holbox is part of a nature preserve that’s home to flamingos, pelicans, and other exotic animals. During the summer months, Isla Holbox is one of the best places to swim next to whale sharks. These massive creatures survive on a diet of plankton and fish, so swimmers can safely get close to these graceful ocean creatures.

The Silver Bank

The Dominican Republic is surrounded by the picturesque Caribbean Sea, but the Silver Bank hides an incredible snorkel adventure that can’t be captured through a camera lens. From December to April, humpback whales gather in an area of the Atlantic Ocean called the Silver Bank. Visitors have the opportunity to witness these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat. The Silver Bank is located on the north coast of the Dominican Republic and is accessible through Puerto Plata.

The US Virgin Islands 

The US Virgin Islands are famous for the breathtaking crystal blue waters that surround them. These Caribbean islands are a destination for snorkeling enthusiasts. Trunk Bay near St. John island offers a self-guided trail for ocean adventurers. Underwater signs highlight species of coral and other entertaining pieces of information along the way.

St. Croix island has many popular snorkeling spots, but Buck Island and Cane Bay are two of the most scenic locations. Buck Island has over 250 different kinds of fish swimming around sponges, coral, and other crustaceans. This area is protected by the US National Park Service but remains open to divers and snorkelers. Cane Bay is home to an array of multicolored fish, brain coral, and other sea creatures. On clear days, you can swim out to Cane Bay Wall where the shallow area drops into deep ocean waters.

And say “aloha” to snorkeling across the US

Say “aloha” to your next travel adventure in Kealakekua Bay off Hawaii’s Big Island. This bay is home to a rainbow of fish, vibrant coral, playful dolphins, majestic sea turtles and some cool history. English explorer Captain James Cook was killed in Kealakekua Bay in 1779. This remote section of the island is only accessible by signing up for a guided tour, paddling out on a rented kayak or hiking on foot over a rugged trail.

The Midwest

Planning your next snorkel adventure in the glamorous waters of the Midwest probably isn’t the trip most people are looking for, but the Great Plains have some great snorkel spots. Baileys Harbor is located north of Green Bay, Wisconsin. This corner of Lake Michigan hides a bunch of different shipwrecks for snorkelers to explore. Another interesting location is outside Chicago in Kankakee, Illinois. Haigh Quarry was an active limestone mine until the 1970s. After it closed, they unplugged pumps left by the mining company and the quarry filled with spring water. Today it’s a fun location for snorkeling.

Florida

Florida’s Crystal River flows into the Gulf of Mexico. A snorkeling adventure in these waters allows swimmers to interact with Florida’s wildlife. One of the biggest attractions about snorkeling in the Crystal River is the opportunity to interact with manatees in their natural habitat. A small population of these endangered animals lives in Crystal River all year long, but you will find the most manatees there during winter months.
Snorkeling is a relaxing and entertaining way to explore under the sea. Hidden adventures lie just beneath the ocean’s surface, and this water activity is one of the best ways to experience them. Make your next adventure an aquatic one with a trip to one of these snorkeling destinations.