Snorkeling at Freeman’s Bay, Antigua
by Steven C.
Pilothouse at Freeman's Bay Antigua
My wife and I went to Antigua last month, December 2018, and tried a number of different snorkeling sites. We go mainly to relax and enjoy the beach, but we’re also avid snorkelers. Most of the sites were not great, for various reasons, but we did have one very enjoyable experience snorkeling at Freeman's Bay that I’d like to share.
We contacted “Snorkeling Antigua” via the internet, and hired the proprietor, Bernardo Concepcion (Bernie) for the whole day. Bernie is a big proponent of reef care and respect for the wildlife under the waves. His enthusiasm is infectious and his professionalism is evident. He leads the route in the water, and he captures video along the way, which he provides to you a few days after the snorkel. Check out the reviews on TripAdvisor.
The first half of our day was spent at Freeman’s Bay, entering the water at Galleon Beach. There are three distinctly different environments in the bay: grassy, reef, and rocky. There is a small wreck on the bottom in two different spots. The pilothouse (photo) is located away from the main hull of the small ship. While in the bay, we saw quite a few Octopus, numerous Green Sea Turtles (photo), three Southern Stingrays (photo), and a pair of Caribbean Reef Squid. Also seen were Lionfish, French Angelfish, Foureye Butterflyfish, Bluehead Wrasse, Smooth Trunkfish (photo), Porcupinefish, Rock Beauty, Glasseye Snapper, Peacock Flounder, Spotted Drum, Whitespotted Filefish, Three Rowed Sea Cucumber, and the usual schools of Blue Tangs and Surgeonfish. It was quite a variety, all seen and photos obtained during just over two hours in the water.
I think a lot of the success of the day was due to the expert guidance of our host. Bernie knows all the best places to go in the bay, and the video he provided was quite entertaining. We’re going back to Antigua in a couple years, and we plan to investigate different snorkeling sites. If we find another gem, we’ll report it here.