Belize Snorkeling Photography Trip
Join This Unique Liveaboard Photo Workshop to Glover’s Reef and Turneffe Atolls
February 18-25, 2023
This exclusive snorkeling liveaboard trip and workshop will be led by an award-winning underwater photographer who will help you get better at taking pictures as a snorkeler. The healthy reefs off the coast of Belize in the remote atolls of Turneffe and Glover’s Reef offer wonderful subjects for your photos. You will come back with great pictures and a much better understanding of your camera, photo editing, and techniques for the unique challenges of taking pictures while snorkeling.
Your group of 18 snorkelers will call the well-appointed 138 foot Aggressor IV yacht your home for the week.
This trip is being run by our partner and friend Ben and his team. Based in the U.K., they are experts at running amazing excursions, and have a great appreciation for the underwater world. They have now run numerous liveaboard snorkeling trips to Belize with many satisfied snorkelers. Your tour guide and photo pro is a member of Ben’s team.
Belize is an ideal destination for those wanting to improve their underwater photography skills. The 500 mile long barrier reef and outer atolls play host to an assortment of marine life of all shapes and sizes. The reefs start right at the surface and in most cases gradually slope down to an eventual wall. They are healthy with a mixture of hard corals and layer upon layer of gorgeous purple sea fans and other soft corals. Marine life is in abundance with everything from neon colored sponges, to lobster colonies, to groups of Spotted Eagle Rays and nurse sharks cruising over the reef. You won’t have to deal with much current in these gorgeous Caribbean turquoise waters.
There are many options available to extend your trip with interesting historical, landscape, and cultural excursions, including to Belize’s Mayan ruins and cave tubing rides through the jungle. An afternoon tour of the Altun Ha Mayan ruin is included in your trip. Read more below.
Where Are Belize, Glover’s Reef and Turneffe Atolls?
Belize is on the Caribbean coast in northern Central America, just south of Mexico, with Guatemala neighboring to the west.
Turneffe Atoll is located past the barrier reef that stretches the length of Belize, around 20 miles east of Belize City.
Glover’s Reef Atoll is about 28 miles off the coast of Belize, and south of Turneffe.
You will fly to Philip Goldson International Airport (BZE) in Belize City. Many airlines run direct flights from east and west coast hubs in the USA. From Europe you would need to fly first to the USA, Mexico, or Guatemala. Canadians near Toronto can fly direct.
You will be met on Saturday at the airport in Belize City and transferred to the Radisson Fort George Hotel to wait until 3pm, when you will board the Aggressor. You will spend seven nights on board the yacht, exploring the reefs of the outer atolls.
On Friday, you will head back to Belize City after some morning snorkeling. You will be met there by a local guide who will take you to Altun Ha, the largest Mayan ruin in Belize (photo below), an hour north of Belize City. Then, after dinner in town with your group, you will spend your last night on the Aggressor.
After an early breakfast on Saturday you will be transferred to the airport or hotel if you are staying in Belize.
What Will You Learn About Snorkeling Photography?
One of the main goals of this trip is helping you get better at snorkeling photography. It is for every level of photographer, from beginner, to advanced, for any type of camera, from a tiny GoPro, to an Olympus TG series, up to a SLR in a massive housing if that is what you have.
Snorkeling photography offers unique challenges compared to diving photography. Snorkelers work in shallower water, with lots of available light. And if you duck dive you have to get your shot on one breath of air while controlling your depth.
Your teacher and snorkel guide is an award winning underwater photographer who has published many articles and images, and also has guided many snorkeling trips, so he is very familiar with the challenges of taking pictures as a snorkeler and will help you get the best out of your camera and your snorkeling technique.
Between snorkel sessions you can get some solid feedback on your photos from the photo pro so you can correct any mistakes you may have made before your next session.
In the after lunch down time, your guide will be available for photography discussions or one-on-one time.
A photo workshop will be given daily either before or after dinner, in the large saloon. The topics are usually tailored to the group with regards to what people seem to be struggling with the most.
What Will This Trip Aboard the Aggressor Be Like?
Glover’s Reef and Turneffe Atolls have been selected as the areas of focus for this adventure. These are the best parts of Belize’s expansive reef system for snorkelers, particularly those keen to take underwater photos. These remote reefs are some of the healthiest spots left in the Caribbean, thanks to the combination of extremely deep ocean walls and shallow areas inside the atolls. You will find fantastic snorkeling spots with alive patch reefs full of sea life.
On average you can expect three to four 60-90 minute snorkeling sessions per day with enough time top side to relax and enjoy your comfortable liveaboard yacht.
On your snorkeling adventure you will visit Turneffe Atoll. Located 20 miles east of Belize City and surrounded by deep oceanic waters, it is the largest and is considered the most biologically diverse coral atoll in Belize. The land and seascape consist of a network of reef flats, creeks, and lagoons dotted by more than 150 mangrove islands and higher cayes.
Large expanses of sea grass habitat in the shallows provide important refuge for reef fish, critters and a variety of marine life.
The reefs are adorned with hard and soft corals in abundance – huge gorgonian fans and elephant ear sponges sway in gentle currents, fish life ranges from large groupers, tarpons, jacks, and reef sharks to schools of colorful angel and butterfly fish.
Glover’s Reef Atoll
Glover’s Reef is a partially submerged atoll located 28 miles off the southern coast of Belize. It forms part of the outermost boundary of the Belize Barrier Reef.
This is the most southern of the three atolls, and arguably the best as it is known for excellent water clarity and wealth of marine life.
The atoll has a dozen small cays of white sand, palm trees and great snorkeling spots. The reef was named after an 18th-century pirate who would maraud Spanish merchant ships.
Within one mile of the eastern edge of the atoll the reef wall descends some 2600 feet to the sea floor. It’s this combination of deep waters and shallow sheltered lagoons that invites the wealth and diversity of marine life that will be discovered during your time snorkeling the atoll.
Night Snorkeling Opportunities Too!
There will be opportunities for night snorkeling on this trip. It is an adventure worth experiencing. And you may see creatures you don’t normally see during the day.
Watch This Short Highlight Video
Belize Aggressor IV
The Belize Aggressor IV is a 138 foot yacht with a wide 26 foot beam. Accommodations include eight Deluxe Staterooms with one king bed or two twin beds and two Master Staterooms with one queen bed. All staterooms have private bathrooms, showers, and air-conditioning.
All meals aboard are included. There will be both continental and hot breakfasts in the mornings, a mid-morning snack, buffet style lunch, an afternoon snack, and a plated three course dinner. The onboard menu features chef-prepared international and Creole inspired cuisine catering for all dietary requirements (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free etc), as well as offering complimentary soft drinks, beer and wine. All guests are welcome to bring a bottle of their favorite liquor if they choose to.
In addition to a spacious lounge, the ship has a large sun deck, bar, grill, and internet service available through the satellite system. At night the lounge offers the option of movies and games. A small library of books for exchange is also maintained onboard.
Most of your snorkel excursions are made from the deck at the rear of the yacht. But some snorkel sites will require transport on a small inflatable tender equipped with a ladder (pictured below). The boat’s large gear up area features a hot fresh water shower for use after your snorkel sessions.
Optional Land Exploration Extensions
Ben and his team can help you extend your adventure by booking a land extension to see some of what Belize has to offer topside. They can arrange tours of the cities, excursions to Belize’s Mayan ruins, visits to the Actun Tunichil Muknalthe cave, tubing rides through the jungle, or a canopy tour through the treetops. If you prefer a helicopter ride over the famous Blue Hole or wish to spend time in the Cockscomb Basin looking for jaguars and other wildlife, just let them know. The range of extension options includes accommodation and transfers.
Trip Details and How to Sign Up
This is a small group charter and we expect it to fill quickly. Your spot is reserved with your deposit. Contact Ben below for deposit instructions.
February 18-25, 2023 – Trip full, request to be waitlisted below.
$4345 US per person (Twin/Double Share)
Master Cabin Upgrade: $150 US per person
The initial deposit for this trip is $400 US per person. At 12 months before departure there is a $600 US per person interim deposit, and at six months there is another $1000 US per person interim deposit. The final balance will be due three months before departure. A few payment options are available including debit and credit cards.
Individual travelers – Ben will happily find someone of the same sex for you to share a room with. If he cannot find you someone, no single supplement surcharge will apply.
- Return airport transfers
- 7 nights accommodation and full board (all meals and snacks)
- Complimentary beer, wine, and soft drinks on board the Belize Aggressor IV
- Services of local snorkel guides and boat skiff for 3-4 snorkeling sessions each day
- In and out of water photography education and assistance from your tour guide photo pro
- Afternoon trip to Altun Ha Mayan ruins and dinner in Belize City on the final Friday night of the trip.
- International flights
- Snorkel equipment
- Travel insurance
- Port and Park Fees ($110 US per person)
- Optional Land Tours – Pricing on request
Ben and his U.K. based team are the organizers and leaders of this trip (more about them below). Galen & Nicole from TropicalSnorkeling.com are promoting this trip, but all signups, trip organization and payments are made to and managed by Ben’s team. TropicalSnorkeling.com does receive a referral fee in exchange for promoting the trip, at no extra cost to attendees.
How to Sign Up or Learn More?
Use the contact form below to contact Ben and his team to request more information about them and express your interest in signing up. They will get back to you shortly with full details.
More About Ben and Our Partnership
Ben (pictured with Nicole) is our friend and snorkeling trips partner. He and his team are based in the U.K. and have over 20 years of experience guiding in Asia and beyond. He has been running his own business since 2010 and is primarily offering guided snorkeling trips, but he started with diving. He began offering snorkeling specific trips because he was aware that snorkelers often get the short end of the stick when thrown in with divers. He and his team love the freedom and low stress of snorkeling, and are very aware of the different needs of snorkelers versus divers, in terms of the reef depth, and calm surface conditions needed.
From our experience going on one of his snorkeling trips we found it very well organized, the guides were fantastic and very helpful, and the underwater experiences were exceptional. Snorkeling groups really get the benefit of all of Ben and his guides’ years of experience in the water, and with different resorts and liveaboards.
All of his trips are small groups of 12-18 guests, or with a similar ratio of snorkelers to guides. And for where they visit, and how packed they are with experiences, they are affordable.
His company is licensed and insured. Barring extreme circumstances they do not cancel trips, and all funds are held in a trust until the trip is completed giving you 100% financial security if they or any of their suppliers go out of business before the trip happens.
Learn More About the Yacht
Completed Trip Dates
March 12-19, 2022