10 Best Beaches To Snorkel in Florida
Snorkeling Hot Spots
From the Emerald Coast to the turquoise waters of the Palm Beaches and beyond, Florida’s more than 1,000 miles of coastline have some of the best snorkeling around. Whether you want to bask in soothing water, find sharks’ teeth, or come face to face with tropical fish and stingrays, these are 10 of the best places to do it.
Bathtub Reef Beach, Stuart
Family-friendly and scenic, Bathtub Reef Beach is located at the northern tip of Hutchison Island in Martin County. The beach gets its name from the water’s bathtub-calm conditions created by the reef system just off the shore. The reef hosts a variety of sea life, including endangered sea turtles.
Cannon Beach, Key Largo
For lovers of Florida history and shipwrecks, Cannon Beach at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park is a must-see. It’s one of the most fun ways to view artifacts of centuries-old shipwrecks, which are submerged in Cannon Beach’s calm and shallow waters. This is a popular spot for families to swim with small children.
Phil Foster Park, Jupiter
Wildlife abounds under the water’s surface at Phil Foster Park in Palm Beach County, which has a snorkeling trail 200 feet off Phil Foster Beach that attracts underwater photographers, divers, and snorkelers alike. The trail spans two acres and is teeming with tropical fish and marine animals—more than 300 species have been observed there.
Red Reef Park, Boca Raton
Venice, Florida, is the “Shark Tooth Capital of the World,” and the turquoise waters of Venice Beach are a paradise for shark-tooth hunters who can snorkel for those treasures along the shore. Lifeguards, free parking, food concessions, and other amenities make Venice an ideal spot to spend a day at the beach.
St. Andrews State Park jetty, Panama City Beach
Snorkel northwest Florida’s St. Andrews State Park to see why the Panhandle is called the Emerald Coast. A rock jetty forms a lagoon protected from the Gulf of Mexico that’s easy to snorkel and flanked by a white-sand beach—a perfect way for beginners and families with children to escape the heat.
Coral Cove Park, Tequesta
Its rugged beauty and impressive rock formations make Coral Cove Park a popular beach destination in southeast Florida. On a calm day, you could mistake the waters off this beach for the Caribbean, with its clarity and countless species of marine animals, including rays, tropical fish, and seahorses.
Regina Sugar Barge, Anna Maria Island
For more experienced snorkelers and divers, the Regina Sugar Barge wreck on Anna Maria Island has a lot to explore. The wreckage of the barge that sunk in 1940 spans a length of 200 feet, rests in 20 feet water, and is only 150 feet from the beach.
Peanut Island Park, Riviera Beach
An island getaway and snorkeling trip in one: that’s Peanut Island in Riviera Beach. There’s no land access to the island, so a boat ride or water taxi is required. It’s well worth the effort to see the clear, blue-green waters of this popular snorkeling and paddling spot and the tropical fish and other animals that inhabit them.
Dr. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park, Dania Beach
Nurse sharks, spiny lobsters, and an array of tropical fish are just some of the specials snorkelers can spot at Dr. Von D. Mizell-Eula Johnson State Park in Dania Beach. The 2.5-mile stretch of beach offers easy snorkeling and diving from shore.