Snorkeling Around Vieques

Photo credit © Sea Vieques
 

Home to what are arguably the best snorkeling sites in all of Puerto Rico, Vieques is located just off the eastern shore of the main island, accessible by ferry from Fajardo, and a favorite destination among snorkeling tour guides. 

What exactly is it that is so great about Vieques?  Soft sands lead out to shallow waters that are shockingly blue and feature excellent visibility.  Underwater, snorkelers are privy to patch reefs, vibrant fish, and other marine creatures such as sting rays, sea urchins, the occasional manatee, sometimes a nurse shark, and much more.

Almost every beach in Vieques is great for snorkeling, so you can bring your gear along with you and alternate your day between relaxing on the shore and under the surface of the sea exploring the aforementioned sites.  

If you aren't staying on the island, you can make it to Vieques on your own by taking the ferry from Fajardo, but many tour guides and sailing charters offer daily snorkeling excursions here for anywhere from $40 to $100(USD) per person.  

Snorkeling Sites

If you're ready to see what's below the surface you might want to visit Esperanza Beach. This site is great for those interested in the more unique sites because here you'll likely encounter antler coral, manatees, and the occasional nurse shark. This snorkeling site is found in Esperanza, Vieques.

La Chiva is another place you might enjoy. As the breeding ground for several different juvenile fish species, you can definitely expect to see a lot of colorful little fish darting in and out of the nooks and crannies of this gorgonian coral forest. There are several other species of hard coral here, plus eagle rays, sea urchins, sea turtles, and much more.

A third place to consider is Secret Beach. The diversity of sea life is what most snorkelers find to be so appealing about this site, which has great visibility.

A fourth place where you can go snorkeling is El Gallito. Snorkeling is only good here on days when there is a southeast wind. The reef stretches from a rock outcropping on the west all the way to the rocks on the east, and within space is marine life galore. If you want to experience it for yourself, this site is found within the western part of Vieques.

Esperanza Beach is a fifth site to consider. Visitors will find the best snorkeling here to be along the pier, but be warned that because it is so popular it can get busy -- especially on weekends.

Some details concerning 9 of the best places where you can go snorkeling in this area are listed directly below.

Snorkeling Sites Near Vieques
Site Location
Esperanza Beach 0.4 mi. Southeast of Central Esperanza
La Chiva Central Vieques
Secret Beach 5.0 mi. East-Southeast of Central Isabel Segunda
El Gallito 2.1 mi. West of Central Isabel Segunda
Esperanza Beach 0.4 mi. Southeast of Central Esperanza
Green Beach 9.2 mi. West of Central Isabel Segunda
Secret Beach Central Vieques
Media Luna Beach 1.7 mi. East-Southeast of Central Esperanza
Mosquito Beach Pier 4.6 mi. West of Central Isabel Segunda

Snorkeling Boat Trips

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

If you want to snorkel during a boat trip, you might want to contact Caribbean Lady Sailing Charters. Aboard the 47' Caribbean Lady sailing yacht you may enjoy the uncluttered Caribbean coast and beaches in the Spanish Virgin Islands of Vieques and Culebra.

Another option to consider is SeaVieques. SeaVieques offers morning and afternoon snorkeling and sailing tours along with custom or full day cruises. They're located within Isabel Segunda, Vieques.

A third good option is Vieques Classic Charter. Explore the Spanish Virgin Islands aboard Shalamar, a 47' Cutter Rigged Yawl whose name translates to "boat of love". Enjoy your sail among the beauty of Vieques and the surrounding area.

Take a look at the chart below for a listing of boat trip providers that offer snorkeling opportunities.

Day Sails and Boat Trips On Vieques
Name Phone Location
Caribbean Lady Sailing Charters (787) 930-5610 0.5 mi. South-Southeast of Central Esperanza
Little Boat Sailing (787) 366-5202 Central Vieques
Marauder Sailing Charters (787) 435-4858 4.2 mi. South-Southwest of Central Isabel Segunda
SeaVieques (787) 435-0256 0.2 mi. North-Northwest of Central Isabel Segunda
Vieques Classic Charter (787) 467-3447 0.4 mi. South-Southeast of Central Esperanza
Vieques Island Powercat (787) 980-9978 0.4 mi. South-Southeast of Central Esperanza

Snorkeling Services

If you looking for a place that offers snorkeling gear, excursions or similar services, you might want to contact Isla Nena Scuba. For non-certified divers, there are the Discover Snorkeling, Discover Scuba and Discover Scuba Subsequent Boat Dive tours. In addition to teaching many scuba courses, this PADI dive center also caters to snorkelers. They are found within the northwestern part of Vieques.

A second place that offers snorkeling related services is Abe's Snorkeling. Endorsed by the Puerto Rico Tourism Company and raved about by nearly all of his previous clients, this tour guide are known as some of the best adventure tours -- not only on Vieques, but throughout the whole of Puerto Rico.

A third company worth contacting is Fin Time Adventures. For a top-notch snorkeling and sailing adventure, this operation has you covered. Their trips are regularly scheduled, so there is always one on the horizon for you to book as a highlight of your trip. They're located in the northwestern part of Vieques.

Some key facts regarding 5 firms that provide services related to snorkeling are listed below.

Snorkeling Services On Vieques
Name Phone Location
Abe's Snorkeling (787) 741-2134 Isabel Segunda, Southern part of Vieques
Black Beard Sports (787) 741-1892 Isabel Segunda, Northwestern part of Vieques
Fin Time Adventures (787) 981-4109 0.3 mi. West-Southwest of Central Isabel Segunda
Isla Nena Scuba (787) 718-7605 0.4 mi. South-Southeast of Central Isabel Segunda
SeaVieques (787) 435-0256 Vieques

To learn more concerning snorkeling, including helpful suggestions and tips for beginners and "pros" check out our detailed discussion of snorkeling in the Caribbean.

There are a lot of great snorkeling sites in Puerto Rico, but those that exist around the island of  Vieques are sure to amaze even the most seasoned watersports enthusiast.  

 

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