Snorkeling in the Riviera Maya

Get Your Snorkel Gear On and Get Into the Sea!

If you are a snorkeler or if snorkeling is on your bucket list, the Mexican Caribbean is a great place to make a splash and check out what is happening underwater. The crystal clear waters and calm seas make snorkeling an easy activity for everyone. Whether you are a beginner or snorkel enthusiast, the Riviera Maya is home to the 2nd largest barrier reef in the world, the Mesoamerican Reef.

Explore the Second Largest Barrier Reef in the World

Snorkeling in the Riviera Maya is as easy as that. The Mexican Caribbean is home to 400 fish species, 100 coral types and endangered species of both corals and fish that are hard to see anywhere else. Riviera Maya dive centers are happy to teach you to snorkel if you are a beginner, conduct personal guided tours of the best snorkel locations or rent you snorkel gear for your own snorkel excursion.

Snorkeling Highlights in the Riviera Maya

There are some unique off-the-shore snorkel spots that will make your snorkeling a little easier and whole lot more enjoyable. If you want to see fish and coral the reef offshore of any local beaches are perfect to explore.

Some of the best snorkeling is done by boat, as the Mesoamerican Reef is located half a mile to a mile off shore. Local dive centers, catamaran tours and independent snorkel guides are happy to take you on a tour of their secret spots. You will be guaranteed a great tour, local information, and a safe trip into the sea. Rental gear is included in guided tours and boat trips are short. Catamaran tours will take you to various locations on the coast, so if you are looking for a diverse snorkel experience this could be your best choice.

Akumal is THE Place For Turtles

Turtles can be seen every day off the beaches of Akumal, and not just one. You will see a few on a good day, and many on a great day. Fish and coral can be viewed as well, but Akumal is the place of the turtles.

Playa del Carmen has a small portion of reef off the shore of Coco Beach, a popular snorkel place that is close to shore. Boat tours will take you to shallow snorkel spots that have great coral and lots of fish!

Xpuha beach has a few coral clusters where you can see indigenous fish and coral types. These areas are not technically part of the Mesoamerican reef but they are still full of great things to see!

Paamul beach has a larger reef system close to the shore where you can see not only fish and corals, but lobster, rays and larger fish types.

All of these locations have boat tours that will take you to larger Mesoamerican reef snorkel spots. We encourage you to try both so you get a well-rounded view of the secrets that lie under the surface of the sea.

Snorkel Safety Tips and Rules

If you choose to venture out on your own into the Mexican Caribbean, keep these safety tips in mind. The sea is a beautiful place, but it has its own agenda. The sea off the shores of the Riviera Maya is calm, clear and glorious but if you are unfamiliar with the territory, or not sure of your skills, the sea can be a challenge.

  1. Always snorkel with a buddy. Never snorkel alone.
  2. Wear a life jacket in case you snorkel too far or get into waters deeper than you are used to.
  3. Check that your snorkel gear is in good condition, and fits well. Losing a fin or breaking a mask strap can cause stress.
  4. Have a surface buoy so water vehicles and boats and see you. Busy beach areas have a lot of boat and water vehicle traffic so you need to stick out in that big, vast ocean.

Have Fun Snorkeling and Do It Safely

Oceans and seas make up 73% of the planet . The Riviera Maya is a great place to learn to snorkel and an even better place to experience the underwater world. Master your skill or learn a new activity in the clear waters of the Mexican Caribbean. Take an underwater camera with you so you can show your friends and family all the great stuff you saw! Oh, and one last thing. Help us protect our reefs! Do not stand on, or touch the corals. Refrain from grabbing or handling the marine life, including the turtles. And remember to wear biodegradable sunscreen.

Stay Close By

  • La Joya Condos #2

    North Akumal| 1 to 3 Beds | 1 to 2 Bath
    Take 33% off for new reservations of 5 nights or more with stays between June 1 and August 31. Some restrictions apply, not available on all units. Right on Half Moon Bay beach, condo #2 is a nice little one bedroom with a second lock-off bedroom #3 if you need a little more space. Pool front, w/ AC, kitchen, living room, etc. Each condo has a view of the sea from a patio or balcony. 3 restaurants are nearby.

  • Casa Magica

    South Akumal| 5 Beds | 4 Bath
    This deluxe 4 bedroom beach front villa does have magic! With warm earth tones, quality furnishings, a seaside pool, BBQ, lovely Caribbean view and a sandy beach. Enjoy central air conditioning, Jacuzzi, Satellite TV.

  • The Reef Condos – Condo E

    North Akumal| 3 Beds | 2 Bath
    Two bedroom condos only $116.00 + tax, per night.  Applies to Condos D and E with stays between May 15 and Aug. 31, 2018.  New reservations only.These Akumal beach vacation rentals on Half Moon Bay have 2 bedrooms all w/ AC, full kitchens, living rooms, and patios or balconies overlooking the sea. Good snorkeling either in the bay or nearby Yalku Lagoon. Restaurants nearby.

  • La Mirage Condos #6

    North Akumal| 3 Beds | 2 Bath
    Enjoy these quiet beach front condos, each with AC, 2 bedrooms, a living room, dining area, kitchen and large balcony or patio overlooking the sea. Enjoy La Lunita Restaurant just to your south. You'll have swimming pool privileges next door, the lagoon is within walking distance. Sleeps 5

  • Nahil Condos

    North Akumal – Half Moon Bay| 4 to 8 Beds | 2 to 3 Bath
    Nahil Beachfront Condo rentals are located in Akumal on Half Moon Bay are the perfect luxury accommodations that combine beauty and harmony in a spectacular setting. Panoramic Caribbean views frame your vacation while water sports become the focus for your family vacation.

  • Alta Vista

    Playa del Carmen – Playacar | 5 Beds | 7 Bath
    With awe-inspiring ocean views, eight bedrooms, big open common areas, and a rooftop infinity pool, this Playacar vacation villa is ideal for large families and groups seeking a luxury beach escape.

  • Del Sol Beachfront 2 Bedroom Condos

    North Akumal| 5 Beds | 1 to 2 Bath
    30% Off Listed Rates! On Half Moon Bay beach in North Akumal. Del Sol Beachfront Condos offers 2 bedroom Akumal beach vacation rentals condos. Each with full kitchen, living room and dining area, decorated in a Caribbean style. A swimming pool, restaurant and dive shop are on premises. Great views.

  • Luna Azul Condos

    North Akumal| 1 to 2 Beds | 1 to 2 Bath
    Low Season Special 2018 – $110 USD / Night! These comfy condos have a great spot on Half Moon Bay beach. Take your pick of a 1 or 2 bedrooms with full kitchen and living areas facing the beach. All units have air conditioning and Satellite TV. Restaurants nearby.

  • Del Sol Beachfront Condos

    North Akumal| 1 to 3 Beds | 1 to 2 Bath
    30% Off Listed Rates + Summer Special! On Half Moon Bay Del Sol Beachfront Condo rentals offers 1, 2 and 3 bedroom condominiums. Each with full kitchen, living room and dining area, decorated in a colorful Caribbean style. A swimming pool, restaurant and dive shop are on premises. Great views and reasonable rates.

  • Casa Rosa

    North Akumal – Half Moon Bay| 5 Beds | 7 Bath
    Save 20% on summer stays between now and September 1, 2018. Some restrictions apply. Casa Rosa offers modern, eclectic glamour in the heart of Half Moon Bay in Akumal. Eclectic touches of whimsical, contemporary, and traditional Mexican art throughout give this luxurious, five-bedroom, seven-bathroom home an unparalleled charm while serving up breathtaking views of the Caribbean.

  • Casa Solymar Akumal Mexico

    Casa Solymar

    North Akumal| 5 Beds | 4 Bath
    Casa Solymar’s 3 spacious bedrooms and faces the turquoise water of North Akumal. All of the bedroom suites are air-conditioned and come with private sitting areas and en-suite bathrooms.  Enjoy this luxurious oceanfront home, full of designer Tommy Bahama furnishings & fine art.

  • French Angel Condominiums on Yalku Lagoon

    French Angel Condos A

    North Akumal – Yal Ku Lagoon| 3 Beds | 1 to 2 Bath
    The best place for snorkelers.  This Akumal vacation rental French Angel is actually 2 side-by-side fully equipped condos right on Yal Ku lagoon. Each condo has 2 bedrooms and 2.5 bathrooms. Enjoy a rooftop pool, amazing views 2 bedrooms per condo. Can be rented separately or together. Each sleeps 6. Excellent for groups or families.

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