Snorkeling Around Punta Cana

Photo credit © Pedrito Punta Cana

Home to the longest coral reef in the Dominican Republic, Punta Cana is interestingly not one of the top snorkeling destinations in the country.  Those who love snorkeling shouldn't reconsider their vacation plans because of this, because there are still plenty of ways to get out and participate in this unique sport.

So, why isn't Punta Cana ranked as a top snorkeling destination?  Its location along the Atlantic coast explains it all.  These waters are rougher than those along the Caribbean coast, especially in the winter.  This doesn't mean snorkeling is out of the question, but you will have to pay extra special care to ensure your safety.  Some local sites to consider include the wreck site of the Monica, or the shallow beach at Club Med Punta Cana.  As a general practice, most resorts and hotels in the area offer their guests free snorkeling gear as part of their stay.

Most agree that the better option will be to sign up for a snorkeling tour hosted by a local dive operator or adventure group.  A favored destination is Isla Catalina, which is about 90 minutes away from Punta Cana.  It is recommended that you skip any tours that stick close to the shore in favor of those accessible only by boat because you can always go back and snorkel local beaches on your own.

Snorkeling Sites

Check the following table for summary info concerning one of the best places to go snorkeling in this area.

Snorkeling Sites Near Punta Cana
Site Location Island
Cabeza de Toro Beach None, 7.9 mi. North of Central Punta Cana

Snorkeling Boat Trips

Pedrito Punta Cana

For some people, the best snorkeling is located off shore.

If you're ready to snorkel during a boat trip, you might want to check with Pelicano Sport Excursions. In addition to scuba diving, which they are renowned for, you can also sign up for sailing, windsurfing, parasailing, snorkeling, speed boat tours, dune buggy tours, and horseback riding.

Another option to investigate is Weiler Caribbean Sea. Having first opened in 2010, this is one of the newer tour operators on the island. This doesn't take away from their quality, though. They're located in Punta Cana.

A third good option is Ocean Adventures. When you combing sailing, scuba diving, and snorkeling, you get what is sure to be a good time. This watersports operator is all about adventure.

Some details about boat trips and day sails that provide snorkeling opportunities are displayed down below.

Day Sails and Boat Trips In Punta Cana
Name Phone Location
Hispaniola Aquatic Adventures (829) 305-2804 Bavaro
Ocean Adventures (809) 390-7418 10.6 mi. North of Central Punta Cana
Pedrito Punta Cana (829) 910-2398 Friusa, 11.8 mi. North-Northwest of Central Punta Cana
Pelicano Sport Excursions (809) 729-4242 13.0 mi. North-Northwest of Central Punta Cana
Punta Cana Expert (849) 889-5892 Central Punta Cana
Weiler Caribbean Sea (829) 692-8468 0 mi. North of Central Punta Cana

Snorkeling Services

If you're looking for someone that offers snorkeling gear, excursions or similar services, you might want to check with Dressel Divers Bavaro - Punta Cana. The snorkeling excursions offered in Punta Cana are Saona Island Snorkeling Excursion, Catalina Island Snorkeling Excursions, Altos de Chavon Excursion and Dressel Surfing Adventure. On the Catalina Island excursion and tour, you get to visit the island that was baptized "Santa Catalina" by Christopher Coulombs himself. They are located within Punta Cana.

A second company catering to snorkelers is Sea Pro Dreams Palm Beach. Their daily snorkeling tour is one hour at the reef and includes transportation, equipment, guide, and soft drinks.

The chart below has a few details about 4 firms that provide snorkeling related services.

Snorkeling Services In Punta Cana
Name Phone Location
Dressel Divers Bavaro - Punta Cana (+34) 963 561 496 13.6 mi. North-Northwest of Central Punta Cana
Scuba Caribe Dive Center -- Bavaro
Scubaquatic Punta Cana (809) 468-4055 14.5 mi. North-Northwest of Central Punta Cana
Sea Pro Dreams Palm Beach (809) 523-4611 7.9 mi. North of Central Punta Cana

For more information concerning snorkeling, including helpful suggestions and tips for beginners and "pros" check out this comprehensive Caribbean snorkeling article.

Don't let the sometimes choppy Atlantic waters scare you away from planning some time snorkeling during our trip to Punta Cana.  There are so many ways to make sure you get to explore underwater that there is no reason not to put this sport on your “Must Do” list.


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