5 Best Snorkelling Spots in Eastern Grand Cayman

Here in Grand Cayman’s East End, we have a beautiful, fascinating underwater world to explore. The best way to discover everything from vibrant coral reefs to imposing walls is on our Grand Cayman East End diving trips. However, if you’re not a qualified diver, there are plenty of amazing snorkelling spots scattered around the East End for you to enjoy.

At Tortuga Divers, we provide Grand Cayman snorkelling tours that allow you to safely experience some of the very best locations in the East End under the guidance of our experienced team. We know the places and the safest conditions, allowing you to fully focus on making memories!

So, let’s get started on our picks for the five best snorkelling spots in Grand Cayman’s East End. If you have any questions while reading, please don’t hesitate to contact us for the answers you need.

Man and woman snorkelling

The Adjacent Wonders of Sunrise Reef and Sunset Reef

Accessible only by boat, Sunrise Reef and Sunset Reef lay off Grand Cayman’s southeastern coast. Conditions here are ideal for complete beginners, and yet the rewards on offer make both reefs popular with the most seasoned pros. In fact, Dr Alex Mustard, one of the world’s foremost underwater photographers, often visits Sunset Reef!

As their names suggest, Sunrise Reef and Sunset Reef offer breathtaking snorkelling opportunities at different times of the day. But whenever you visit them, these twin reefs boast crystal-clear waters and a kaleidoscope of marine biodiversity, ensuring an unforgettable experience.

Expect scattered coral formations including brain coral, elkhorn coral, purple sea fans, sponges, and more! You may also encounter angelfish, hawksbill turtles, and peacock flounders, to name only a few of the resident marine species.

And the good news is that Tortuga Divers visit Sunrise Reef and Sunset Reef on our Waverunner Tour in Grand Cayman’s East End!

Man snorkelling and viewing colorful fish

Explore the Hidden Gem of Richfield Reef

A hidden gem nestled off the beaten path, Richfield Reef has an enchanting beauty. Accessible by boat from the East End, this secluded snorkelling spot offers a pristine underwater paradise. Glide across the surface and discover a kaleidoscope of colours as you encounter a vibrant tapestry of coral formations. 

From intricate brain corals to delicate sea fans swaying in the gentle currents, Richfield Reef is a haven for marine biodiversity. Keep your eyes peeled for elusive reef dwellers darting among the crevices.

Richfield Reef is another stop on our thrilling Waverunner Tour in Grand Cayman’s East End

Barefoot Beach is a Treat for Experienced Snorkellers

A trip to Barefoot Beach combines great snorkelling with a visit to one of the best beaches in Grand Cayman’s East End! This secluded beach off Queen’s Highway is such a hidden gem that it’s not even signposted, so double-check you’re in the right place when you arrive.

You can access the reef from the shore, but it’s important to note that the swim out is quite long and doesn’t have any opportunities to stand up. With this in mind, we only recommend Barefoot Beach snorkelling for people with experience, even more so if it’s a windy day.

For the first 300 feet or so, you will find turtle grass beds in the sand flats. This then gives way to the reef which sits in water with depths ranging from four to eight feet. Expect to find healthy elkhorn coral, star coral, and an array of colourful marine species.

The entrance to the water is rocky and rich in sea urchins, so take care and consider timing your snorkel with high tide.

View of Grand Cayman Morritt's resort from the ocean

Snorkel Under Mimi’s Dock at Morritt’s Resort

If you’re staying at or near Morritt’s Tortuga Resort in the East End, you can find great snorkelling under Mimi’s Dock. You can access this spot right from the beach in front of the resort! If you need some gear, come to us for all your snorkel equipment rental in Grand Cayman’s East End. We provide masks, fins, and snorkels in all sizes which you can rent on a daily or weekly basis.

Once in the winter, you can look down on a cornucopia of fish and other marine species! You can swim right up to them, but be sure to always treat these animals with respect. The sights on offer and the calm conditions make this a great activity to enjoy with children.

However, please do not confuse snorkelling at Mimi’s Dock with swimming out to the reef opposite Morritt’s Resort. This is further out, and the currents are very strong, especially near the cut in the reef. It’s easy to get into difficulties there.

For a snorkelling experience that is as fun as it is safe, consider our Shallow Reef Snorkel in Grand Cayman’s East End.

Man Snorkeling

Get Off the Beaten Path at Colliers Wilderness Drive

Grand Cayman is filled with hidden gems and one of our favourites for snorkelling is Colliers Wilderness Drive. And the good news is that it’s easy to reach from Morritt’s Resort. To get there, simply turn left out of the resort onto Queens Highway, which will become Austin Connolly Drive. After around 1.2 miles, just south of Collier’s Public Beach, you will reach an intersection with Colliers Wilderness Drive on your right.

There is no signposting to direct you, so park opposite the road and walk towards the ocean. Pass through a gap between the bushes and follow the path to the shore, from which you can enter the tempting water. You can find Charlie’s Shoal snorkel site here, which consists of large coral boulders, finger coral formations, and various marine species.

Looking for more off-the-beaten-path locations to escape to while you’re in our part of the island? We think you’ll love our blog East End Grand Cayman: Exploring the Hidden Gems.

Man and woman on jetski with instructor in water

Book Your Grand Cayman Snorkelling Tours in the East End!

Now you know just five of the best snorkelling spots in eastern Grand Cayman, it’s time to explore them! Browse our range of Grand Cayman snorkelling tours to find the perfect adventure to suit your needs. If you have any pre-booking questions for the Tortuga Divers team, please just get in touch for more information.

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