Asia covers a huge area, many different countries, and an incredibly large variety of different types of land and water environments. From deserts to tropics; from islands to huge landmasses, Asian countries and regions vary widely in the types of lifestyle and environments that exist.
It shouldn’t be surprising, then, that you can find some great snorkeling in Asia! Then again, we’re not here to talk about simply great snorkeling; we’re here to discuss the best snorkeling in Asia, and why each of these snorkeling places is worth a visit.
Best Snorkeling in Asia
Today, we’ll help you to plan your next snorkeling adventure by providing you with the best snorkeling sites to visit in Asia.
1. Koh Chang Marina National Park, Thailand
There are a lot of beautiful snorkeling locations in Southeast Asia. In Thailand, the region that stands out the most for its beautiful underwater vistas is Koh Chang Marina National Park. This region is home to dozens, if not hundreds, of beautiful snorkeling spots if you know where to look for them.
This region has weather that is much different from that of the other parts of Thailand. For a large part of the year (October through April), it’s incredibly arid. In particular, visiting Koh Ran— an uninhabited island in this area—is sure to grant you amazing sites of a huge number of fish!
It’s safe to say that this isn’t the most popular snorkeling sport in Thailand, but that is part of what makes it one of the best. Tourism in Thailand is rapidly deteriorating the condition of many snorkeling locations, and thus this one stands out as one that is still open and clean.
2. Sabah, Borneo, Malaysia
In the Malaysian state of Borneo, Sabah can be considered to be one of the best areas for snorkeling. This is because, here, there are over 400 islands! In fact, more than 75% of all of the reefs in Borneo can be found in this particular region. Amazing, right?
One of the nicest things about snorkeling in this region is that many of the living reefs are very near the water surface, so snorkelers with any level of experience will be able to enjoy the reefs and sites.
When exploring, you can expect to see some of this marine life:
- Green turtles
- Manta rays
- Reef sharks
This location easily qualifies as a contender for the best snorkeling in Asia. We recommend that you visit in April when the water temperature is most agreeable between 26°C and 30°C.
3. Bali, Indonesia
Indonesia is another coral-heavy area in Asia, and you can find a lot of people who visit this region for snorkeling because of this. In particular, Bali is one of the best places to do some amazing snorkeling.
One thing that people love to see most is the wreck of the famous USS Liberty. This is located in Tulamben, which is a small coastal village. It’s safe to say that this spot is incredibly popular (and thus crowded), but that doesn’t make it any less worthy of seeing!
Here at the wreck, you can see sponges, sea anemones, fish, coral, and more! The wreck depth varies from five meters to 30 meters, and you’ll need to be able to swim about 30 meters offshore to get up close to the wreck.
Palau Menjangan, also known as Deer Island, is another incredibly popular spot for snorkeling. Here, you can see angelfish, chormis, and clownfish. It’s easily considered to be one of the most stunning places in Indonesia, but the reef condition has been deteriorating in recent years, so there are more restrictive rules about snorkeling there.
4. Bohol, Philippines
The Philippines, which some people forget is part of Asia, is a wondrous place for snorkeling. Among all of the great snorkeling locations, Bohol can be considered to be one of the absolute best.
In addition to snorkeling, Bohol offers great historic sites and scenic vistas that you can explore. There are also five-star resorts and a lot of great nightlife here. Then again, we’re here to talk about the snorkeling!
Every snorkeling tour in this area will bring you to amazing corals, and you may even see dolphins or sea turtles throughout your adventure! The variety of sea life in this region is sure to stun even those who have been on hundreds of snorkeling explorations before; you never know what you’ll be able to see.
The amount of diversity in this region is amazing, so you can easily enjoy the best snorkeling experience not only in Asia but also the world.
5. Grand Island, Goa
Goa is a fascinating region that is known for having an interesting blend of both Portuguese and Indian culture, but that’s not the only thing that Goa is known for. It’s also known for its amazing snorkeling spots!
While Goa is covered in amazing waterfalls, forests, and even a lot of interesting wildlife, there are a lot of different variations of beaches and snorkeling spots that you can discover. The most popular, however, has got to be Grand Island!
On Grand Island, both snorkeling and scuba tourism is famous. Here, there are soft and colorful corals, and there are also humpback dolphins! When you take an adventure in Grand Island, you’re sure to come back with a number of amazing stories to share. This island in the Arabian Sea is known as Ilha Grande and Monkey Beach as well.
You’ve now been introduced to five of the most amazing and memorable snorkeling locations around Asia, but are these the only locations that you will want to visit? Probably not!
The simple fact is that Asia is a huge region, and there are thousands of different islands in this area that have amazing snorkeling locations. While these five are certainly some of the best snorkeling locations that you can find in Asia, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t other amazing spots as well!
If you find that these five spots seem very appealing to you, we highly recommend doing additional research in other similar spots to fill out your trip schedule. You won’t regret taking as many chances as you can get to do some snorkeling in Asia, and every location is sure to live on in your memory as one of the best experiences ever.