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Best Snorkeling & Beaches

Jersey City, New...
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Best Snorkeling & Beaches

Hi All,

We need your help in deciding our 1st marriage anniversary destination in Nov last week .

We love beaches, water sports and food as like anyone else . . . Could someone please suggest the island were we could get Best snorkeling experience for sea life fishes & reefs , crystal clear beaches & food…

We were thinking of Puerto Rico but not sure if snorkeling is best there among other Caribbean islands? Also does it have any all inclusive resorts - I could not find any?

Lastly could you suggest any hotel which could arrange for a beach candle light dinner - we missed this during our Dominican trip due to bad weather and would like to work this during our anniversary?

We have been to Dominican and stayed in Majestic Elegance in Punta Cana last year so that is out for this year. Thanks for all your suggestions and help.

Marietta, Georgia
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for Beach Vacations, Bonaire
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1. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

Great beaches and great snorkeling do not go together well. Some compromise is required... For example, the best snorkeling in the Caribbean is probably the island of Bonaire, but it is very lacking in terms of nice sandy beaches. But, some possibilities:

US Virgin Islands (St Thomas and especially St John): Some very nice beaches and good snorkeling, some accessible from the beach. Not sure about any all-inclusive resorts though.. Don't remember any.

Turks & Caicos/Providenciales: probably the best beach in the Caribbean (Grace Bay Beach) with a couple of decent beach accessible snorkel sites and numerous good snorkeling sites available via boat excursions. Two AIs: Beaches (very expensive and very family/kid oriented) and Club Med (inexpensive, but facilities in need of renovation/update, very fun atmosphere, adults only)

NH
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2. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

I almost hate to say this because of the danger involved but... On Puerto Rico at the El Conquistador there is a boat that transports patrons to their private island. (The hotel is not AI but has a lot to offer.) Their little island is beautiful and the snorkeling is boring unless.... you are crazy enough to venture around the back side of the island where the currents are ferocious! Would I recommend this? NO! ...However, it was some of the most spectacular snorkeling I have ever done (even if I almost ended up being swept away) and I've been snorkeling for 30 years.

Having said all of that, and if PR is on your radar, I'd consider a look at Culebra. It's nothing like what you are looking for but if you are up for an adventure and some pretty excellent snorkeling....

Lastly, I agree whole heartedly with AmatuerGo. We both love Club Med on Provo but it certainly is not for everyone.~~~Allfins

Edited: 11 August 2014, 20:07
Hagerstown, Maryland
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3. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

Look at the Karisma Resorts El Dorado properties in the Cancun and Riviera Maya areas of Mexico. Adult Only, Outstanding service, amenities, swim up suites, top shelf drinks, etc. There are quieter resorts (El Dorado Seaside Suites) for the honeymoon/anniversary celebration, and livelier El Dorado Maroma (best beach!) and El Dorado Royale. I haven't stayed at a Majestic property, but I think they are comparable. Happy Anniversary!

idaho
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for Sun Valley, Ketchum, Beach Vacations, Idaho
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4. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

Fiji and beaches, and snorkeling go together REALLY well..the atolls just rise out of the water, the most beautiful beaches EVER and this was the best snorkeling that i had ever done. some of the small resorts will do this as well..for sure the large AI will...Fiji is it!!

Bonaire
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5. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

I'm thinking that Turks and Caicos might be the best fit. As a plus, several places on Grace Bay offer private dining on the beach.

Indonesia
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6. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

I know you're from the US and South Asia may not be on the top of your list to visit but maybe take a look at the Maldives as well? They have great beaches and most, if not all, the resorts have house reefs for snorkelling. Anyway, check it out.

Duncan, Canada
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7. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

I agree, Maldives is wonderful for snorkelling and diving and they usually are little cabins on the beach with lots of seclusion! loved my two weeks there although was around 20 yrs ago! stayed in Kuredu.

Indonesia
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8. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

That's one of Kuredu's claim to fame. That they have the most number of people who go back to their island. Very good choice. I know friends who've been there and they have nothing but good words about the service and the island. Do check out the Maldives. You may get a good deal with the local travel agencies there.

Jersey City, New...
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9. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

HI All - thanks for your suggestion. I live in New Jersey so Maldives & Fiji is out of picture due to one day of complete travelling.

We are no thinking of Turks and Caicos OR US Virgin Islands - Could some one suggest if we are first time snorkeling then would it be too difficult or we can manage? Also any resorts to suggest?

Marietta, Georgia
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10. Re: Best Snorkeling & Beaches

Either one of those (TCI or USVI) would be fine for first time snorkelers. Both have some snorkeling off the beach and also some boat access snorkeling. USVI would probably have more beach accessible sites than TCI, but boat snorkeling at TCI might be a little better than USVI.

At TCi there are two beach access sites, Bight Reef and Smith's Reef. Bight Reef is generally very calm and protected but gets quite a bit of snorkeler traffic. Smith's Reef is probably a bit better snorkeling, but more exposed to some waves and current. I'd suggest getting comfortable with snorkeling before trying Smith's Reef.

TCI has mostly relatively small rental/condo type resorts that are very nice. There are two All-Inclusives, Beaches (very family/kid oriented and expensive) and Club Med (adults only, relatively basic facilities, but lots of fun). The Turks & Caicos forum here on TA is very active and helpful. Post there for specific recommendations.