Cemetery Reef Snorkeling
The 4th most popular snorkel dive spot in Grand Cayman.
Wednesday 3 October 2018 06:22 GMT
North of Georgetown at the north end of Seven Mile Beach, the snorkelling at Cemetery Beach Reef is known for its seclusion, especially relative to the other dive sites around the island. The beach is particularly scenic with its huge Australian pines. Unfortunately, there isn't much to see right off the beach - you'll need to swim pretty far offshore to get to the reefs. Straight out from the beach access pathway, you’ll see three large orange buoys in a row leading away from the shore. The main reef formation is at the third buoy about 300 feet offshore in 10 foot deep water.
This patchy reef has scattered coral heads of average health that have plenty of reef fish and occasional resting nurse sharks or sea turtles. From that third buoy, there are a few smaller coral heads about 200 feet to the south. Keep in mind that it can be a challenging snorkel back against the surf. During Cemetary Reef snorkeling, you may encounter sergeant majors, yellowtail snapper, bermuda chub and grunts. Some snorkelers have been feed the colorful fish for years, so they may swarm you when you arrive. Also, this dive site is known for occasional strong currents, so exercise care. Even further offshore, there is the marked wreck of the USS Kittiwake in 65 foot deep water, but it is best accessed by snorkel boats since its an extremely long swim out and tough coming back.
After a long day of snorkeling at Cemetary Reef, you might want to grab a cool, refreshing drink at Macabuca Tiki Bar behind the Cracked Conch Restaurant just north of the Cayman Turtle Centre.
To reach the snorkeling on Grand Cayman Island by air, you will fly into the Owen Roberts International Airport (GCM). There are regular flights from Houston, Dallas and Miami. There are regular flights from Houston, Dallas and Miami. Once on Grand Cayman Island, the snorkeling dive sites are easily accessed by renting either a scooter or jeep, both of which are common means of transportation on the island. There is also a public bus that covers most regions of the island. When departing the Cayman Islands, there is a departure tax of $37.50USD. This tax may be included in the airline ticket, but you will want to verify in advance.
The Cemetery Reef snorkeling dive site is located near the northern end of Seven Mile Beach. The Cemetary is easily found on West Bay Road at the intersection with Cemetary Road and across from the West Bay Fire Station. There is some roadside parking adjacent to the cemetary and a small informal parking area across the street.
Overall, Cemetery Reef is the 4th most popular snorkel dive spot of all 25 snorkeling dives in Grand Cayman. Several of the better snorkeling spots are nearby Cemetery Reef including USS Kittiwake and Marriott Beach.