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snorkeling in Jamaica

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Grand Rapids...
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snorkeling in Jamaica

I am looking for the best snorkeling in the Carribean with live coral and plentiful fish, hopefully near a Sandals resort for my daughter's honeymoon. they want not only calm waters for snorkeling but a little wind for sailing. any suggestions?

Kingston, Canada
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1. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

I believe that Belize has reputably the best snorkeling in the Caribbean.

wisconsin
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2. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

Near a Sandals check out turks and Caicos.

Jamaica's reefs although they are there are not as beautiful as other places.

Los Angeles...
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3. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

Sad to say Negril is not the best for snorkeling, compared to other Caribbean islands as mentioned.

That said, the water will be calmest in the mornings before, say 9:30am prior to the jet skiis and other water craft starting their day. I mean you'll see fish and other sea life, but not to the degree you would elsewhere.

Grand Rapids...
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4. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

Thank you so much for responding so quickly and thank you for your information. I have spent over 30 hours so far on the internet trying to find a very special place with good snorkeling for their honeymoon. Thank you for your help.

Buffalo, NY
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5. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

We are avid snorkelers (we have our own gear), and I troll around the Caribbean looking for great snorkeling spots. We went to Belize this August, and we thoroughly enjoyed the snorkeling at Mexico Rocks (off of Amerbergris Caye). We visited Grand Cayman last year, and there are many beaches where you can find great snorkeling directly off the beach. Barbados (on the west coast) also has some great snorkeling areas (lots of sea turtles) that are accessible from the beach. Aruba has some great wrecks to snorkel to, but the seas are often rough. St. John's (USVI) has a national underwater park that actually has a sea trail with signs pointing to various coral and underwater features. That is a lot of fun. We saw the most stingrays off of the Bahamas, and amazing fish off of Bermdua.

Here's the long and short of it, I have not been to a Sandals, so I can't specifically address that. Jamaica certainly has decent snorkeling, a good variety of fish, somewhat healthy coral in spots. There are plenty of decent places to snorkel off of the Negril coast. Close to the beach in Negril is sandy bottom, so there is not often much to see for snorkeling directly off of the beach. But decent snorkeling is less than a 10 minute boat ride away.

Maryland
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6. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

Thanks Nittany&Fargo for the great list of great snorkeling spots.

My husband and I love snorkeling too and I spend time on the internet trying to find a cool place without a 7-hour flight. Your list helped alot.

Another great place was Akumal Beach, specially in front of Akumal Beach Resort. It is known for always being able to see sea turtles.

In Negril we enjoy snorkeling around Xtabi. The reef had a lot of fish. Near Rick's we saw a school of squid and in front of Citronella our son-in-law saw about 50 star fish.

Wisconsin
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7. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

I'm confused about Xtabi, this is a resort right? So can you snorkel and explore caves without being a guest and is there a tour guide that can take you around?

wisconsin
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8. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

along with being a hotel it is a a resturant and bar on the cliffs. You can snorkel along the shoreline anywhere (for the most part). It is also a nice place to watch the sunset with a drink without the crowds of Ricks cliffs.

Do be careful snorkeling near the cliffs for the waves can push you up against them. I found it tough swimming.

san francisco
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9. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

St. Lucia has wonderful snorkeling. Anse Chasenet would be wonderful for a honeymoon and there is wonderful snorkeling right from the beach. The rooms are up on a hill with a wonderul view of the Pitons.

Bodega, California
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10. Re: snorkeling in Jamaica

Unfortunately the reefs around Jamaica have been destroyed pretty much by pollution, overdevelopment and hurricanes. The reef right outside my house has been covered in sand since Hurricane Ivan.

But - I find that when snorkeling around the shallow reef (just across from Sandals) or out by Little Bloody Bay (RIP) or Half Moon Beach you do get to see some more/cooler activity. I've been finding as well that due to the lack of serious weather the past couple of years the reef by our house seems to be "coming back" which is good.

As a snorkel and diving destination though - Jamaica is not it.