Exmouth Snorkel Guide
Far north of the city of Perth in the great state of Western Australia lies a little town called Exmouth. This town is a popular tourist destination for national and international visitors who flock here every year to witness the turquoise blue waters, the migrating humpback whales, and the stunning Cape Range National Park. One more reason to add to the list is spectacular snorkeling right at your fingertips.
Here in Exmouth you will find yourself on the very doorstep to the Ningaloo Marine Park which is one of Western Australia’s premier snorkeling locations. This is because the Ningaloo reef is one of the world’s last remaining untouched fringing coral reefs. This spectacular reef system showcases an extraordinary range of corals, fish, turtles, stingrays, dugongs, whale sharks, dolphins, manta rays and much more. Stretching over 260 kilometers from Bundegi Beach and heading south there is no shortage of places to explore.
Now for this article we will focus on snorkel sites that you can access easily off the beach. However, if you are feeling a bit more ambitious there are a multitude of boat and tour operators that run snorkel tours and other marine interaction experiences, just contact the Ningaloo visitor center to find out more information.
Turquoise Bay: For our first snorkel spot we have our personal favorite, Turquoise Bay. This spot is located 60 kilometers south of Exmouth in the Cape Range National Park. Here you will find gorgeous white sand and turquoise blue waters (hence the name) and this will quickly become your favorite spot to come and waste the day away as holiday mode kicks in. For the best snorkeling here be sure to start on the southern side of the southern car park. Because there is a current that pulls you north as you snorkel this will allow you to drift snorkel and float along as the current does all the hard work for you. Be sure to swim around 50 meters off the beach when you start this snorkel (abilities permitting) and if you are lucky you might even run into a sea turtle or a reef shark while admiring the coral reef.
Lakeside: The second most popular snorkel site in the area is Lakeside which is conveniently only 5 kilometers north of Turquoise Bay. The average depth of this snorkel is only 2.5 meters so it is a great spot to start out at to ease yourself into things or if you are looking for the best beginner spot around then be sure to start here. To access this snorkel spot walk approximately 400 meters south from the carpark to the marked entry point. The snorkel trail goes out and to the north approximately 150 meters and then back down south to exit at the same point from which you started.
Oyster Stacks: Last but not least be sure to check out oyster stacks. This is a very unique snorkel spot for viewing the fish life. This spot is not the place to go if you want to see massive amounts of coral and have a nice sandy beach to relax on between snorkel sessions. Here you will find a rocky beach with large rock formations that make up the oyster stacks in the water as well. As you snorkel around these oyster stacks you will see one of the most prominent displays of fish life and if you take a peek under some of the rocks you might even be able to catch a glimpse of some extra special specimens. Be sure to check the tides before snorkeling here because the average depth is only 2 meters and it is not the best spot for exploring on a low tide. There is a sign posted on the footpath that will explain to you the tides and what times are best for snorkeling here.
Lucky for you most of the best snorkel spots in the area are easily accessible from the beach and are well suited to people of all abilities and ages. And if you haven't got your own snorkel gear do not fret. There are plenty of shops in town that will be happy to hire some out to you for daily or overnight hire or you can purchase your own new kit which will most likely come in handy because after snorkeling here you will be hooked forever.