1 May 2024

Australia's Coral Coast is a marine lovers wonderland, boasting some of the most spectacular snorkelling spots in the world.

You’ll find vibrant coral reef systems that teem with marine life, as well as crystal-blue waters that will have you second guessing whether you’re in the Coral Coast or the Maldives. So, grab your mask, snorkel, and flippers, you’re about the dive into some magical waters.

Blue Holes

10. Blue Holes

Blue Holes is located just south of Kalbarri and is a snorkelling spot characterised by its shallow, cobalt-blue sinkholes formed in the rugged limestone crustaceans. The clear, calm waters of Blue Holes provide excellent visibility for snorkellers to explore the underwater caves and rock formations. A myriad of fish, including over 70 species of finfish, and coral, adds to the allure of this exceptional snorkelling spot. Blue Holes' protected waters make it a safe snorkelling area for the whole family to enjoy.

Coral Bay coral gardens

9. Oyster Bridge

Accessible solely by 4WD due to soft sand terrain, Oyster Bridge lies 14 kilometres north of Coral Bay within the Bateman Sanctuary Zone, offering one of the most captivating snorkelling experiences in the region. A lengthy rock formation, resembling a bridge, stretches parallel to the shore, forming a lagoon. Perfect for young snorkellers, this spot offers immediate encounters with diverse marine life just off the beach. For those seeking a longer swim or exploring at high tide, venturing over or around the bridge reveals even more marine wonders amidst the coral. For visitors without 4WD access, quad bike tours offer an alternative means of reaching this site.


8. Point Quobba Aquarium

Point Quobba Aquarium is a calm coral-filled lagoon known to the locals as the 'Aquarium'. Found in Carnarvon, the snorkel hotspot is a natural haven, notorious for its rock pools and brimming marine life. The calm waters and shallow depths make Point Quobba Aquarium the perfect spot for families and beginner snorkellers to explore what lies below. Whether you're observing marine creatures from the shoreline or snorkelling in the rock pools, Point Quobba Aquarium definitely deserves a spot on your Coral Coast Highway itinerary.

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7. Oyster Stacks

Oyster Stacks in Exmouth is renowned for the Moorish Idol, Convict Surgeonfish, various sub-sets of the Parrotfish family, Lined and Racoon Butterfly fish as well as Angelfish. Snorkelling Oyster Stacks is tide dependant, so we recommend visiting in the morning during high tide to avoid damaging the coral reef.

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6. Osprey Bay

Osprey Bay is a remote snorkelling spot located in the UNSECO World Heritage Listed Ningaloo Reef that offers tranquil waters, perfect for the kids. Snorkellers can discover a kaleidoscope of vibrant corals, tropical fish, and friendly sea turtles. The peaceful atmosphere and pristine underwater environment make Osprey Bay an ideal destination for ocean lovers seeking a dose of underwater serenity. Whether you're exploring the shallow reefs close to shore or venturing further out to deeper waters, Osprey Bay promises a beautiful snorkelling experience.

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5. Lakeside

Lakeside is a sheltered beach situated within Cape Range National Park and is part of the Ningaloo Marine Park. Glide over shallow reefs and potentially even be lucky enough to swim with dugongs, dolphins and an array of fish and coral species. While less busy than other snorkel spots in Exmouth, Lakeside features equal underwater beauty and is an essential addition to your Coral Coast itinerary.

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4. Five Fingers Reef

Five Fingers Reef is a hidden gem in Coral Bay that can be accessed via 4WD only. The five fingers of parallel reef that give this place its name, run from the beach to around 200 metres offshore. You can step right off the sand, weave your way through narrow waterways, swim amongst abundant fish, and spot rays, octopus, and turtles. In fact, Five Fingers Reef is arguably the best location near Coral Bay to swim with turtles in the Ningaloo Reef making it a must-visit when visiting the area.


3. Abrolhos Islands

The Abrolhos Islands, an archipelago off the coast of Geraldton, are a remote paradise for snorkelling enthusiasts in search for the ultimate underwater escape. The Islands surrounding reef communities are a meeting place for tropical and temperate sea life, forming one of state’s unique marine areas and rated #2 in the Top Ten Dive and Snorkel Spots in Western Australia. Get to the islands by jumping on board a liveaboard cruise with Eco Abrolhos Cruises or spend the day at the islands with Kalbarri Scenic Flights or Shine Aviation.

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2. Ayres Rock

For confident snorkellers, Ayres Rock is a giant coral bommie that can be found near Coral Bay, approximately 400 metres offshore Bills Bay. This massive brain coral spans about 8 metres in diameter and stands 5 to 6 metres tall. We recommend jumping on tour with Coral Bay Eco Tours who can take you there, or popping into the Coral Bay visitor centre who can pinpoint certain markers and a buoy to get you there.

Turquoise Bay

1. Turquoise Bay

Turquoise Bay is a slice of paradise nestled within Cape Range National Park and was named the #1 beach in the South Pacific and #3 in the world in Trip Advisor’s 2022 Travellers’ Choice Awards. Snorkellers can drift along the gentle current that is suitable for moderate to advanced swimmers, exploring an array of marine life along the way. Enter the water at the southern end of the beach and let the current take you over the reef for a fantastic snorkel.

Whether you plan on drifting with the current, snorkelling in lagoon pools, or venturing out to deeper waters, there is no shortage of snorkel spots to add to your Coral Coast itinerary. Before visiting these hotspots, please be mindful of your flippers! Preserving the environment is crucial for maintaining the coral's pristine state. Additionally, ensure you apply sunscreen well before entering the water to prevent it from washing off and harming the coral.

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