Belize is located at the east of the Caribbean Sea. Belize has the world’s second longest barrier reef (164 miles), the Belize Barrier Reef. It makes Belize be one of the best snorkeling destinations in the world. If you are a snorkeling addict, snorkeling in Belize is a must. The barrier reef is the most diverse section of the whole Mesoamerican Reef system. The Southwater Caye Marine Reserve is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. The reef’s lagoon has a shallow crystal clear waters with white sand, turtle grass, and corals. Juvenile fish, marine invertebrates, and seabirds can be seen easily. There are so many fantastic snorkeling sites in Belize. I select the top 6 popular and amazing snorkeling sites for you. Hope the snorkeling destination guide will favor you to have the best snorkeling Belize journey ever!
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Where to snorkel in Belize?
Glover’s Reef Atoll
Glover’s Marine Reserve is famous for its rich marine life and incredible clarity. It’s named after a couple of pirate brothers! As the richest marine area in the Caribbean Sea, Glover’s reef has a shallow lagoon with over 700 patch reefs. The lagoon is perfect for snorkeling. You can plan to stay here for days, there are many comfortable resorts and not expensive. Enjoy an overwhelming relaxed holiday!
Lighthouse Reef Atoll
Lighthouse Reef is the most remote atoll of all. There are more than 20 world-class diving and snorkeling spots, such as the Blue Hole, Half Moon Wall, and the Aquarium. It makes Lighthouse Reef is one of the best snorkeling destinations in the world. Over 200 species of fish are living in the reef atoll. As a part of the Marine Reserve, Lighthouse Reef Atoll covers about 10,000 acres. In the center of the Reserve is Half Moon Caye. It has a shallow area that is good for snorkeling. The renowned Blue Hole is just 8 miles north of Half Moon Caye. As for Long Caye Wall, it’s more suitable for diving.
Turneffe Island Atoll
Turneffe Island Atoll is the largest Atoll of all three atolls. It’s surrounded by shallow lagoons. It’s well-known for the wall diving, but some shallow sea gardens are also great for snorkeling. This place abounds with lionfish. People have to control the number of lionfish to keep a healthy marine condition. Try to catch one!
Hol Chan Marine Reserve
There is no doubt that Hol Chan is one of the most popular snorkeling sites in Belize. It is located at 6km from Ambergris Caye. Hol Chan is Mayan for “little channel”. There are four different zones: Zone A (The Reef), Zone B (The Seagrass Beds), Zone C (The Mangroves), Zone D (Shark Ray Alley). You can recognize each Zone by buoys. Each one has its characters. For example, Zone D, Shark Ray Alley, is an area where nurse sharks and southern stingrays congregate.
It’s a shallow snorkeling site. Normally, it takes a 20-minute boat ride from Ambergris Caye. The calm waters have great visibility. There are colorful boulder corals and brain corals. It’s easy to see angelfish and yellowtail snapper. It’s a great snorkeling site for both beginners and experienced snorkelers.
It’s one of the famous snorkeling spots in Belize because of the whale shark. This giant amazing creature can be seen easily from March to June. Whale sharks are feeding on many spawning fish, which balances the marine life. There are trips to Gladden Spit leaving from the coastal town of Placencia. You can’t leave Belize without seeing the incredible creatures!
General Belize Snorkeling Travel Tips
Belize has a subtropical climate. The temperatures are varying from 16℃ to 32℃. The best reason to visit Belize is “dry season”, from November to May.
People in Belize can speak English (official language), Spanish, Maya or other local languages. Basically, you don’t need to worry about the communication.
Passport & Visa
If you are from United States, Canada, or EU countries, visas are not required. You can enter Belize with your passports. How convenient it is! People from other countries have to apply for visas. No matter where you are from, please check your passports valid date, at least three valid months before you arrive in Belize.
$2BZ (Belize Dollar)=$1 US. US currency is accepted, or credit cards are the most used.
Belize electricity is the same as Canada and the US (110V AC) and the size plug. Bring an adapter if you need one.
Belize has sales tax (12.5%), hotel tax (max 9%), and departure tax (depends on your traffic ways). You’d better check the latest information with local authorities.
Belize belongs to the Central Time Zone. Don’t miss your flight!
You can negotiate the taxi price with taxi drivers. The normal taxis have green license plates.
Before you start your trip to Belize, a Havrix injection for Hepatitis A and a tetanus shot are highly suggested to take. You can contact your doctor to seek some advice.
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Belize is a world-class snorkeling destination. You just need to pay for a snorkel tour, and the boat will take you to visit several snorkeling spots. Apply the sunscreen every few hours to avoid the sunburn. Invite your friends and family to start the best snorkeling Belize journey!