There is no doubt that snorkeling tours are definitely one of the most popular of all Key West tours and activities. Key West is known for its proximity to one of the country's densest and most diverse stretch of the fragile coral reef ecosystem that stretches from the coast of Palm Beach County all the way out to the remote islands of the Dry Tortugas. Snorkeling in Key West allows you to head out to one of the best spots along the Key West coral reef gardens to take a sneak peek at the fascinating world of corals, reef fish, and other marine life that make up the gardens. Key West snorkeling is fun and easy, especially with the help of on-board crew members who provide guests with thorough instruction on proper use of snorkeling gear. But as you will see on the main Best On Key West snorkeling tours page, there are quite a variety of snorkeling tours to choose from when coming to Key West. This article is meant to help you find the perfect Key West snorkeling trip for you and your family.
Standard Snorkel Adventures
These are the kind of snorkeling trips that are most prevalent in Key West. And while they are considered our "standard" snorkeling tours, they are far from boring or typical as far as snorkeling in general goes. Any Key West snorkeling excursion is jam-packed with fun and good times thanks to the unique and excellent quality of the coral reef gardens as well as to the engaging and entertaining crew and staff aboard the snorkeling boats. Our most popular snorkel trip is the Snorkel Adventure, departing on a spacious and comfortable 78-foot catamaran and providing on-board guests with up to 1.5 hours of snorkeling as well as complimentary water, soft drinks and beer on the return trip. The Reef Express is another popular snorkel trip for the budget-minded traveler. Instead of one snorkel location it actually does two 30-45 minute stops in two different places.
Eco-Tours and Snorkeling
If you are looking for something that gives you a more comprehensive sense of the natural side of Key West Florida and the Florida Keys, go on one of the snorkeling eco-tours instead of a standard snorkeling tour. The snorkeling eco-tours combine Key West snorkeling with other means of exposing guests to the beautiful natural environments of Key West. One of the most popular snorkeling eco-tours is the Back Country Safari. This trip heads out to Key West's primitive back country aboard an authentic sailboat. In the back country, guests are able to kayak through the Mangrove Islands, a group of small islets that are dense with foliage and wildlife. The trip also includes over an hour of snorkeling at one of the most diverse spots for snorkeling in the Gulf of Mexico. Looe Key Snorkel is another excellent snorkeling trip that goes above and beyond. The trip is a full 5 hours and takes you out to the area of the Florida Keys that many consider to have the best snorkeling. In fact, Looe Key is known for having five different types of coral reef systems, and the amount and diversity of wildlife out there is unparalleled! And then, finally, there is the highly popular Dry Tortugas trips that take you out to the remote islands of the Dry Tortugas, about 68 miles west of Key West. These islands are almost entirely surrounded by coral reef, so snorkeling out in the Tortugas is straight off the beach.
Sunset Snorkeling and More!
But there are even more types of snorkeling excursions and other ways of exploring the underwater environments of the coral reef. A sunset snorkel trip combines a standard snorkeling excursion with an exciting and picturesque Key West sunset cruise. The Rum and Reggae is by far the most popular sunset snorkel trip in Key West, offering guests complimentary rum punch, beer, wine and sodas after the snorkel portion of the trip and excellent views of the sunset to the sounds of groovy reggae music. Another way of exploring the coral reef gardens that is similar to snorkeling but also different is the new Mini-Sub adventures where you use your own personal underwater scooter to explore the gardens. There is also snuba diving, which combines snorkeling and scuba diving techniques for an easy and exciting way of exploring deeper areas of the coral reef.