Snorkeling Around Grand Turk

You can grab your gear and snorkel off of pretty much every beach on Grand Turk, but if you want to experience the best of the best, plan to spend some time traveling by boat to the deep water reef systems. 

If you've never been snorkeling before, Grand Turk is the perfect place to start.  As mentioned above, you can bring a snorkeling kit with you any time you hit the beach, and wade in for some snorkeling any time the mood hits you.  There are a few spots in particular such as The Library in Cockburn Town and Governor's Beach really shine thanks to shallow reefs and diverse marine life that includes snappers, parrotfish, grunts, turtles, and both hard and soft coral.  

In addition to snorkeling near the shore, you can also hit up some offshore reefs, especially those that surround the Caicos Cays.  Most of the island's dive operators will let snorkelers ride along with them when they take divers out, but there are also a few tour guides that specialize in snorkeling tours.  

Snorkeling Sites

If you're ready to experience what's below the surface you might enjoy visiting Gibbs Cay. The landscape of this site varies so that you'll have different sites to see right along the shore and about 150 feet out. Closer to where the surf breaks you'll often encounter southern stingrays in the sand flats, while further out in water depths of five to 15 feet is a coral reef where you'll spot barracuda, permit, trunk fish and lemon sharks. This snorkeling site is located within the southeastern part of Grand Turk.

Old Pier is another option. This site is renowned for its divers marine life in waters that extend from 10 to 25 feet deep. The creatures you can expect to see include southern stingrays, frogfish, octopus, sea horses, and peacock flounder.

A third site to consider is Gregorian Wall. Recommended for advanced snorkelers only, this site begins at 20 feet deep and is home to some of the larger sea creatures you might hope to see in the area. Great visibility allows you to see plankton, hogfish, parrotfish, barracuda, and Nassau grouper.

A fourth location where you can go snorkeling is The Library. The reef fall starts at around 15 feet deep and give snorkelers a chance to view both hard and soft corals that are home to wrasse, snappers, sergeant majors, barracuda, parrotfish, and grunts. You may also encounter a sea turtle. If you want to check it out, this site is situated in the western part of Grand Turk.

Review the table just below to learn more about 4 of the best places to experience snorkeling in this area.

Snorkeling Sites Near Grand Turk
Site Location
Gibbs Cay 2.5 mi. East-Southeast of Central Cockburn Town
Old Pier 1.6 mi. South of Central Cockburn Town
Gregorian Wall 2.8 mi. North of Central Cockburn Town
The Library 0.9 mi. North-Northwest of Central Cockburn Town

Snorkeling Services

If you're looking for someone offering snorkeling excursions, rentals, or other services, you might want to contact Papa J Tours. Snorkel, swim with the stingrays, dive, kayak, fish, go on a whale watching tour, or enjoy the full Grand Turk walking tour experience. They are found in the southern part of Grand Turk.

A second place that offers snorkeling related services is Crystal Seas Adventures. Customize your own adventure when you charter a day of sailing with this boat operator. In addition to making stops for snorkeling when you charter a sailing adventure, they also offer a special snorkeling tour several times a week.

The following table provides some details regarding two companies that provide snorkeling related services.

Snorkeling Services On Grand Turk
Name Phone Location
Crystal Seas Adventures (649) 946-6977 Central Grand Turk
Papa J Tours (649) 231-0400 1.8 mi. South of Central Cockburn Town

For more information about snorkeling, including useful tips and suggestions for both "old pros" and beginners, check out our detailed Caribbean snorkeling article.

You don't have to be an experienced snorkeler to enjoy the waters of Grand Turk, but at the same time, the underwater landscape will easily capture the interest of experienced snorkelers.  No matter your skill level, snorkeling should for sure be made a priority during your visit to the island. 


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