Snorkeling Around Road Town

Although Road Town is one of the busiest towns in the British Virgin Islands, it is not especially known for its snorkeling prowess.  But to discount the possibility of snorkeling when you stay here is a mistake.  Not only is it possible to find local spots on your own, but there are numerous tour operators waiting to take you out to more remote sites.

If you're looking for a quick snorkeling fix, you shouldn't have a hard time making it happen.  You can rent a snorkeling kit from a local dive shop and wade in to any beach.  The entire island has relatively calm conditions and for the most part clear visibility.  Still, when a list of the top snorkeling sites on Tortola is made, it rarely includes any in Road Town.  Fortunately, it doesn't take much work to get transportation over to Smuggler's Cove or Brewer's Bay Snorkel Site where you'll find coral and large schools of fish within a swim-able distance from the shore.  

There are also plenty of tour operators that can take you to what can be considered some of the best snorkeling destinations in the Caribbean.  Just across the channel from Road Town is Salt Island Bay, which is a great spot because of a shipwreck that exists there, plus there are many other islets and cays protected by reefs that should be explored. 

No matter where you go, you'll typically encounter squirrelfish, parrotfish, grunts, sea turtles, spiny lobsters, moving about their home of coral reef in such a manner that it is almost entrancing.  Indeed, snorkeling is the type of activity that allows you to escape from your busy life on shore and fine a sense of inner peace as you get an up close and personal look at a whole new world.

Snorkeling Sites

If you're ready to experience what's down below you might want to check out Brewers Bay. As the most popular snorkeling spot tied to the island of the same name, it can get a little crowded, but not so much that you should consider avoiding it. Turtles really love it here, and you'll also see an abundance of stingrays. This snorkeling site is located easily reached by taxi Northwest of central Road Town.

White Bay is another place you might enjoy. Because it is a protected area where anglers can't take advantage of the abundance of sea life, this is a snorkeling site where visitors will encounter some of the larger fish species including yellowtail snappers, jacks, and grunts. Many are friendly and curious and will swim right up to you. Turtles can often be spotted here as well.

The chart directly below lists some key facts regarding 3 of the best places where you can experience snorkeling in this area.

Snorkeling Sites Near Road Town
Site Location Island
Brewers Bay 2.7 mi. Northwest of Central Road Town Tortola
White Bay 4.1 mi. Northeast of Central Road Town Guana Island
White Bay 4.4 mi. Northeast of Central Road Town Guana Island

Snorkeling Boat Trips

For some people, the most enjoyable snorkeling is accessed away from the shore.

If you want to combine some snorkeling with a boating adventure, you might want to check with BVI Yacht Charters. If you're looking to charter a yacht to sail independently throughout the British Virgin Islands, this charter company has over 50 yachts in their fleet. This means you'll be able to choose from a huge variety of vessels and are sure to find the perfect fit for you.

Another option worth investigating is Footloose Sailboat Charters. Every custom sailboat in their fleet includes electronics and navigational charts, double staterooms, freshwater showers, fully appointed galleys, stereo systems, initial ice and water, housekeeping supplies, and much more. Everything you need to get your sailing adventure started comes included. They're located in Road Town.

A third good option is BVI 360. Power boat and private yacht charters to a variety of destinations within the British Virgin Islands are offered by BVI 360, and their tour guides are pleased to share some of the island's hidden gems with you.

A few details concerning boat trip providers that offer snorkeling opportunities are displayed down below.

Day Sails and Boat Trips In Road Town
Name Phone Location
Aaron Rentals (284) 494-8917 Downtown Road Town
Aristocat Charters (284) 499-1249 Downtown Road Town
BVI 360 (284) 541-1281 0.7 mi. South-Southeast of Downtown Road Town
BVI Yacht Charters -- 0.5 mi. Northeast of Downtown Road Town
Blue Sail BVI (284) 494-2268 Downtown Road Town
Conch Charters (284) 494-4868 Downtown Road Town
Footloose Sailboat Charters (284) 494-0528 0.4 mi. North-Northeast of Downtown Road Town
White Squall II (284) 494-2564 Downtown Road Town

Snorkeling Services

If you're looking for a business that offers snorkel rentals, excursions, or similar services, you might want to contact BVI Scuba Company. Most of the tours that this operator offers bring snorkeling together in a combo package that also includes at least one other option such as birding, hiking, or a relaxing boat ride. Included in their packages are the snorkeling gear, refreshments, and snacks. They are located in downtown Road Town.

Another company worth knowing about is Blue Water Divers. Planning on doing some snorkeling during your time on the isles? This group is not only the top scuba diving operation around, but they also rent out snorkeling equipment.

A third place to consider is Tortola Kayak Snorkel Tours. This shop's major snorkeling-centered tours include trips to the Baths, Norman Island, Treasure Point, Salt Island, and the Wreck of the RMS Rhone. All of their tours include your snorkeling gear, transportation by boat, and lunch. They're found within Beef Island, easily reached by taxi East-Northeast of central Road Town.

Be sure to look at the following table for a list of 5 companies that offer snorkeling related services.

Snorkeling Services In And Around Road Town
Name Type Phone Location Island
BVI Scuba Company Snorkeling Tour Operator (284) 540-2222 Downtown Road Town Tortola
Blue Water Divers Snorkeling Equipment Rental Service (284) 494-2847 Nanny Cay, 1.9 mi. South West of Central Road Town Tortola
Caribbean Images Tours (Snorkelling) Ltd Snorkeling Tour Operator (284) 494-8599 Downtown Road Town Tortola
Paradise Watersports Snorkeling Equipment Rental Service (284) 495-9941 5.1 mi. Southeast of Central Road Town Peter Island
Tortola Kayak Snorkel Tours Snorkeling Equipment Rental Service (284) 346-2606 4.4 mi. East-Northeast of Central Road Town Beef Island

To learn more about snorkeling, including tips and suggestions for both "old pros" and beginners, read our exhaustive Caribbean snorkeling page.

Make planning a snorkeling trip your top priority, even if it just means carving out a bit of time during your trip to the beach to wear your mask and snorkel.  You will never be sorry that you did, even in what can be considered the island's worst conditions.  


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