Last Updated on June 21, 2023 by Snorkel Ken
So, we just got back to Georgia after a trip to Islamorada and I couldn’t wait to write up this small guide that we thought you might find helpful.
Long called the “Sport Fishing Capital of the World”, Islamorada is now more popular than ever. Forming a kind of “legendary” status amongst anglers, divers and snorkelers, Islamorada’s massive amount of healthy, diverse, marine life pull in all sorts of adventure seekers. Snorkeling the Florida Keys is gonna’ fun!
What Makes Islamorada Snorkeling So Great?
There are Queen Angelfish, shallow coral reefs, and high-profile coral heads that make Islamorada snorkeling awesomeness. Moray eels, dart and wiggle below from coral crevice to coral crevice. You’ll get the chance to see nurse sharks (reclusive) and maybe even a turtle or a sea horse!
Lizzy and I were able to see a couple of green sea turtles and a huge array of gorgeous fish during your three days stay.
And don’t think that Islamorada doesn’t take its great natural gift seriously! They even have an underwater study for habitat science and research called the Aquarius.
To learn more about Islamorada stop by the Chamber of Commerce at mile marker 82.5 or dial 1-800-322-5397.
Our Favorite Snorkel and Dive Spots in Islamorada in the Florida Keys
The Eagle, an intentionally sunk ship is about 287 feet long and sits in 110 feet of water. As a drive attraction, The Eagle dominates all in Islamorada. She rests on her starboard side and the patina of sponge and coral encroachers is a beautiful, colorful site. Lots of jack, tarpon, and grunt.
Davis Coral Reef is known worldwide for the huge concentration of grunts and snapper. Not to mention the green moray eels that are prevalent and familiar sites for dive masters. The morays actually interact, to a degree.
Recognizing the location by a 136-foot lighthouse, the USS Alligator ran aground and sank in 1822 and here lies another great dive spot. The story behind the grounding is quite remarkable as the Alligator was protecting a convoy from pirates. This is a possible snorkel spot as well due to the relatively shallow 25 feet of water.
For a chance of pace from the diving and snorkeling, take a shot at Conch Wall. It is comprised of a sloping wall and great growth of barrel sponge and gorgonia. It’s a different experience than snorkeling a typical reef but the sponge growth is beautiful.
Crocker Wall is a 450+-foot-long wall in just fifty feet of water. The wall has a thirty-foot drop that is crowded with grunts, yellowtail, and grouper with spur-and-groove coral and blocks coral on the wall.
For macro photo enthusiasts, Pickles Reef provides a great chance to experience the reef’s minutia, from flamingo tongue cowries to banded coral shrimp, all amid a dynamic coral reef in only 15 to 25 feet of water. Not our favorite location but a change isn’t bad at times.