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.

Our passion for snorkeling has led us to base our entire business around the sport. We learnt to snorkel as young kids, exploring the sandy bottoms of beaches and even pulling on a mask and snorkel to swim around swimming pools.

Snorkels have been used by humans for hundreds of years, using reeds to help breathe underwater primarily for fishing, the technique was then used for exploring and having fun.

Snorkel Venture has been a natural progression from a marine-based travel business which is over 10 years in the making.

The reason why?

We strongly believe that snorkeling can change a person’s life.

Group Photo of happy Snorkel Venture guests

The benefits attached to snorkeling are tremendous, it’s a great tool for stress relief, physical fitness and general happiness. There is nothing better than being able to swim amongst the exotic underwater world, calmly taking in sights and feelings never experienced before.

At Snorkel Venture we set out on a quest to promote and arrange our own snorkeling holidays to the worlds very best destinations. Our ethos is simple: to inspire people of all ages and capabilities to go out there and experience extraordinary snorkeling, backed up with the comfort, expertise and safety of a travel company who has been there and done it for themselves.

Every snorkel destination in the world is different, offering up a bounty of marine life all colors of the rainbow. We combine exotic marine life with beautiful destinations, warm temperatures and excellent accommodation.

We have a full range of vacations ready and waiting to change your life, for the better.

Start your own snorkelling adventure with us today, to discover something amazing and to realize the health benefits of this wonderful sport.

We live and breathe Snorkeling. We are so passionate about it that we even decided to make a travel business around the sport, offering the opportunity for people from all walks of life to travel to some of the most extraordinary places on the planet, to experience something new, to see the amazing, delivered with the comfort and security of expert guides who are with you at every step of the way.

Many of our clients are already experienced snorkelers, but for those that are looking to improve or for those that want to to try snorkelling for the first time, then you have come to the right place.

Snorkeling is the best and easiest way to access the underwater world, providing a sense of discovery and is also a great exercise for the body. The health benefits are countless.

Our top tips:

WEAR YOUR SNORKELING MASK PROPERLY

We are not trying to teach you to suck eggs, but getting this right is one of the most important tips we can offer. Your mask must fit properly around your face, if the seal around your face isn’t properly secured, then air will leak in and water will follow. If you are not a confident snorkeler this can make people panic.

The tip here is to hold the mask around your face, take a breath of air from your nose and if the mask stays fixed without you holding it, then you have it. Also, make sure that all hair is pulled away from the seal (that includes moustaches/beards, gentlemen).

I would also suggest that the strap of the mask is kept at the widest part of your head, towards the top. Doing this will ensure the mask remains securely on and reduces the chance of water coming in.

Lastly, for comfort, try not to wear the mask too tightly, the water will add pressure once you are in the ocean.

Snorkeler exploring pristine reef in Komodo

NEXT, THE FINS

Pick a pair of fins that fit you well, not too tight so that your toes are cramped together, but not so big that your heel pulls away from the fin each time you kick your legs.

Having said that, it’s always better to have a pair of fins that are slightly bigger. Your fins will also fit on a lot easier once your feet are wet.

FOGGY MASK?

foggy mask

There is nothing more annoying than your mask fogging up just as the underwater world is coming alive. We have all experienced it, but there are a few handy tips to help reduce the chances of fogging up.

The old spit and smear technique works surprisingly well. Before getting into the water spit on the inside of your mask, smearing the saliva with your finger across to cover all areas of the mask. Once you are done, dip your mask in the water and give it a good rinse.

You can also get your hands-on specialist defogging gel, although a drop of shampoo to rinse in the water also works really well.

RELAX AND BREATHE

One of the most important rules with any snorkeling experience is to always remain calm and breathe. Take a look around and the underwater world you are seeing, it is beautiful.

Practice with your mask and snorkel on before heading into the water and get used to breathing through the tube. Don’t bite on the seal as you will find your jaw aches quite quickly.

There is a chance your tube may fill with a little water through the chop of the ocean, the remedy is to simply clear the tube with one big exhalation, shooting all of the water out.

So, always remain calm, practice your breathing and by following the rest of these simple rules will have you well on your way to seeing some magnificent underwater life.

Happy couple snorkeling a reef in Komodo

CAUGHT YOUR CURIOSITY?

Take a look at our range of snorkeling trips throughout Asia which tick every box you can imagine from a dream snorkeling holiday. Alternatively, get in touch with us for a chin wag or to ask any questions.

SNORKEL VENTURE CLIENT JANET ROBINSON SHARES HER VERY FIRST EXPERIENCE OF SNORKELING IN THE TROPICS OF INDONESIA.

When I told my family that I was going on a snorkeling adventure to Indonesia, they questioned my sanity.

‘Mom, are you sure about this?’ They said. ‘People like you don’t travel.’

They were right.

I had worked my entire life, raised three darling children and aside from two-week vacations with my family, I had never traveled before.

Having recently retired at the grand age of 65 I now have many years ahead of me to rest, enjoy and do all of those things I previously hadn’t had time to do. My one regret in life is that I had always wished that I had traveled more, I’d seen the most wonderful documentaries about the world’s oceans and fondly looked back on vacations to the Florida Keys where I’d been snorkeling many years ago.

One afternoon I was catching up with my daughter over coffee and we were talking about our calendar plans for the year ahead. She suggested that I should do something crazy this year, start a mid/late-life crisis which would surprise everyone who knew me.

‘Go on mom, go for it whatever you want to do!’. She said. ‘Surprise us!’.

Her words hit a chord and when I got home later, I started thinking more about a traveling adventure. I had my doubts as the thought of traveling alone filled me with dread, but I started researching on the internet and something caught my eye.

Six months later and I was checking into my flight, the destination – Bali in Indonesia.

Arriving into this foreign land had butterflies in my stomach. The humidity that hit me as I stepped off the plane and the instant kind and charming nature of airport staff dissolved the tiredness I felt from the long journey over. This was just the beginning of my exotic adventure.

A day later and I was wiggling my toes on a white sandy beach. Turquoise water gently lapping around my ankles and the warmth of the morning wind blew at my hair. I was in paradise.

I had arrived at the Komodo Resort in a far-flung part of eastern Indonesia, after checking into my charming beach bungalow (and a mint and lime mocktail later!) I headed to the resorts on-site dive center for my induction and briefing about the day to day running of my snorkeling trip.

house reef and pier at komodo resort

I became acquainted with my snorkel guide who would be with me on each of my daily excursions. We examined detailed maps of the outlying islands and range of snorkel sites we would visit, gazing at flip charts brimming with a variety of marine life, all of which I would (hopefully) be seeing on my stay. I couldn’t believe I was doing this, but with excitement and trepidation, I jumped in.

Snorkeler

Over the course of my week in Komodo, with the help and support of my guide, I experienced and did things I didn’t think possible. I learned that leaving your comfort zone is the BEST thing I could have done and should have done years ago.

Learning to snorkel properly had me gliding over a spectrum of color, encountering tropical fish I had ever imagined. I also gained a huge amount of confidence the more time I spent in the water, improving my technique and general fitness. Even towards the end of the vacation, I was taking part in yoga classes. Something my kids found hilarious.

‘Mom, doing yoga?’. They said with open jaws.

Now back at home I look back on my trip with the most wonderful of feelings. This might sound silly, but I firmly believe that my vacation has given me a new lease of life, I feel there are no boundaries, despite my age, for me to experience and see things I previously felt unimaginable.

Split shot of Komodo reef and Komodo island

The biggest problem I now have is having to wait to go on my next snorkeling adventure.