Your first snorkeling trip is sure to be an adventure. Exploring the underwater world is a completely different experience than anything you will encounter on dry land… everything you see through those goggles will have the potential to intrigue and excite. This quick guide will help you ensure your first snorkeling experience is as smooth and enjoyable as possible.
Qualities of a Great Beginner Snorkeling Group
Finding the right group is the hardest part. Every snorkeling instructor is different, and every excursion is different. Beginner-friendly snorkeling groups are difficult to find – beginners usually do not stay beginners for very long in this addictive and enriching sport. Determine your compatibility with a particular instructor or excursion by looking for the three qualities listed below:
1. Group Dynamics – Ask about the experience level of the other snorkelers. The majority of groups are “mixed”, accepting snorkelers of every skill level. We suggest looking for excursions tailored specifically to beginners because the mixed groups offer less time to ask questions. However, if the mixed group is very small, you may enjoy the ability to socialize with more advanced snorkelers.
2. Good Location – Location is super important. Snorkeling from the beach is easier than snorkeling from a boat, but beach locations are often much less exciting. Snorkeling from a boat requires extra bravery and skill but instructors can use boats to take you to the most beautiful pristine, life-filled spots. You may want to avoid groups that include divers because good diving spots are often too deep to see anything from the surface.
3. Easy Itinerary – Some people mistakenly think that snorkeling is a lazy sport but that couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s actually very intensive and tiring especially for beginners. If you are not used to the intense sun, or if you are not a strong swimmer, you may want to book a shorter excursion or at least ensure there will be plenty of breaks. Save those packed itineraries for your second outing.
Preparing for Your Grand Adventure
Booking is only half the battle. Thorough research is the only way to ensure your first trip does not present any undesired surprises. You’ll need to learn the local snorkeling rules (don’t touch the coral don’t feed the fish). Most of the rules are common sense but some locations have specific restrictions. For example, some locations are home to invasive seaweed species and local laws may require all divers and snorkelers to wash their equipment thoroughly to avoid spreading the problem.
Etiquette tips are also helpful, like remaining relaxed and quiet to avoid kicking up sand or scaring away the aquatic life. Etiquette does not stop at politeness – it is good form to practice donning, using, and cleaning your equipment ahead of time so that fellow snorkelers do not have to sit by idly while the instructor helps you learn the basics. Buy some cheap snorkeling gear well ahead of time and practice basic clearing and troubleshooting techniques so you’ll know what to expect on your trip.
The first trip is always unforgettable. The extra time spent preparing is well worth the effort. Research thoroughly and prepare early to make sure every memory you make is a good one.
Thank You Reading! I’m Josh K. – a full-time Internet freelance writer. I write for and publish my work various blogs. I tend to keep my work closely related to my interests and hobbies. I hope you enjoyed the article.