By RT – (Southern USA)
I am wondering if anyone can share a recent report on snorkeling Cozumel. Have the reefs recovered at all? How is the snorkeling there now? I am thinking of a taking a trip there in the spring of 2015.
Thanks for any help.
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Cindi – Jan 28, 2015 – Cozumel, Worth a Second Look
I’ve been meaning to post a trip report on my recent Cozumel vacation, but even with the best of intentions that has not happened…
But, what I can tell you is that Cozumel is definitely worth the trip, but I probably wouldn’t go specifically to snorkel.
We took a snorkel trip by boat, which I actually would not recommend – the water is simply too deep for us snorkelers at Palancar Reef.
Stick to the shore snorkeling – although somewhat limited – and you will have a good time.
Renee – Feb 8, 2015 – Cozumel Snorkeling
I just got back from a week in Cozumel. We chose to stay at a hotel that has snorkeling right on the beach. I did not go on any boats that take you out into a reef area. To me, it seemed like it would be too deep to experience much, but maybe I’m wrong.
The snorkeling was fun and we did see a bunch of stuff: lobsters, sand dollar, all the regular tropical fish, lots of sting rays, even a bat fish!
The thing to keep in mind is that there does not seem to be a lot of coral. It was mostly rocky areas and piers where all the snorkeling was. So if you are looking for tons of live coral that is shallow… maybe go somewhere else.
Having said all that, I would go again in a heartbeat! I had a great time. I’ve been snorkeling in Hawaii and Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands and this was less spectacular but it was also much cheaper!
Jean – Mar 6, 2015 – Still Worth It
My husband and I snorkel a fair amount (we go a couple times a year pretty much all over) and we consider Cozumel a fall back, having made about 7-8 trips.
We were there at the end of January, 2015. Unfortunately it was cold, for there, about 70°F and windy enough for the resorts to want you to stay out of the water for the majority of the week we were there. When we did get into the water the snorkeling was fairly good anywhere from Money Bar north toward town.
I wouldn’t bother with a reef trip though because it is too deep for good snorkeling and riddled with jellyfish.
Gerry – Apr 8, 2015 – Cozumel March 2015
I was in Cozumel for the fourth time on a cruise ship for the day. I went out on a boat trip with Roswitha (Mystic Snorkeling) for the third time. It is always a good trip snorkeling around Palancar and Columbia reefs. They are kind of deep, at 12-20 feet, but there is still beautiful coral and good variety of large fish. I always see a turtle out there, some rays, and large grouper.
I paid the guide extra to night snorkel with me just outside of the marina. I saw the usual night stuff, got to get up close with a juvenile puffer very friendly and reef squid also. Usually squid get spooked when you get close, but these were docile and stayed a foot from your face without bolting. Pretty cool.
I spent 10 days in Bonaire last fall so I am really spoiled, but Cozumel is much cheaper.
I am going back in August for a week to do a whale shark tour. I will snorkel with Roswitha again, and maybe do a dolphin encounter too. There is an excursion where you can assist in liberating baby turtles from their nests at night; going to try that also. August happens to be the best time of year to go for whale sharks and baby turtles. I also will shore snorkel drift from The Money Bar to Fiesta Americana day and night.
Karen – Nov 23, 2015 – Cozumel, Great Snorkeling – Money Bar
Just returned 11/2015 from a trip to Cozumel and our main focus is snorkeling. We had a great trip!
We did a lot of shore snorkeling in front and to the north of Residence Reef (where we stayed) and there were many fish and some reef.
We ALWAYS enjoy Punta Sur and their AMAZING fan garden and lots of fish. Some beautiful coral formations there as well.
We took a boat trip to Palancar, which was too deep, and Columbia, which was great. I would not waste may time at Palancar again, but Columbia was well worth it.
We also went to Chankanaab which was fine, but very cold and sometimes blurry with the fresh water entering.
The last day we decided to return to one of our original places, Money Bar. We had not been there in four years. We were stunned buy the huge amount of new growth! There were some great formations and tons of life. The “crackling” there was louder than anywhere else we snorkeled.
It was a great trip and we would suggest that you give it a shot again as the reef is definitely growing.
Nicole and Galen – May 30, 2020 – More Recent Cozumel Snorkeling Reports
Richard shared his thorough and helpful 2018 Cozumel snorkeling report. Suzanne shared her 2017 Cozumel resort beach snorkeling report.