3 Super Fun Beach Snorkels in South Florida
Several weeks ago I ventured to Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, Riviera Beach, and West Palm Beach. I snorkeled in 3 locations and they were all great.
Disclaimer: This blog and the information posted is based on my personal experience. Sometimes rules change or beaches are closed so please do a little research the day before you plan to go on a snorkeling adventure to avoid disappointments or surprises.
#1- Phil Foster Park- under the Blue Heron Bridge
ADDRESS: 900 Blue Heron Blvd, Riviera Beach, FL 33404
Things to note: You should go at high tide to have the best visibility. It is important to snorkel with a dive flag for safety. This allows boaters to see you from a far distance. They usually sell them at sporting good stores, dive stores or you can order one on Amazon through my affiliate link by clicking HERE.
Parking is FREE! The reef is a short swim from the entry point, approximately 150 feet straight out. The water is generally calm. The reefs are cool because they are artificial, with plaques of information about what organizations created/donated them. The biodiversity is great. Some of the animals I saw while I was there are pictured below.
#2- South Inlet Park- Boca Raton
Address: 1100 S Ocean Blvd, Boca Raton, FL 33432
Parking at this spot is pay-by-the-hour. There is a little wooden bridge that takes you to the beach. Once you are on the beach, walk until you see a building. Enter the water where the building is and kick straight out about 400 feet directly across from it. You will most likely see some other dive flags and that’s where you want to be. The animals in this area are pretty big and when I was there I saw a sea turtle. I was watching the turtle from a distance and it seems that I was determined not to be a threat because it came up for a breath of air right near me! Check out my video below.
#3- Lauderdale By the Sea
ADDRESS: The corner of Datura Ave and El Mar Drive
There are many places to park in this are. Many of them are either flat rate for the day or by the hour. This reef is a little harder to find. It’s deeper and about 500 feet off the beach. Follow the other dive flags to the reef. The water is a little choppier but once you pass the surf, it’s an easy swim. I saw a lot of tropical fish everywhere and several puffer fish. I even found an elusive trumpet fish! When you enter the water, there are tiny little fish that nip at your feet. Don’t be alarmed. They are harmless and it tickles not hurts. If you wear water shoes or water pants, you won’t even feel them.
I stayed at Hotel Seacrest and highly recommend them. The best part is the location. It is a three-block walk to a different beach where you can play in the surf, and your room comes with a parking spot! Here is the review I left for them on Trip Advisor. Note: this is NOT a sponsored recommendation. I paid to stay there and they did not offer anything to me for a positive review.
Final Thoughts for Safety
Adhere to the lifeguard flags. There will be signs posted about what each color flag means. If you have any questions about why a particular flag is flying, most lifeguards are happy to chat with you and explain. Always snorkel with a buddy!
The sun is super intense in Florida. This is NOT an affiliate link, I love this brand of reef safe sunscreen. In lieu of sunscreen, whenever possible I wear an exposure shirt that has sun protection. You can get them at many different sporting goods shops and I find that even if they are made for running or biking, they do well in the water. I also recommend pool noodles for buoyancy help if you are snorkeling without a wetsuit.
If you have any questions about this post, leave me a comment! If you visit any of these places, I would love to hear about your experience and/or see photos. Here are all of my social media links: