Sand Island Snorkeling

The 33rd most popular snorkel dive spot in the Florida Keys.

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Southeast of Key Largo, the snorkeling at Sand Island is well known an abundant parrotfish population.

The Sand Island is located 6 miles southeast of Key Largo and 0.8 nautical miles northeast of Melassas Reef Light. When accessing via private boat use the Pennekamp boat ramp. It is marked by three mooring buoys. The best mooring buoy for snorkeling off Sand Island is the middle buoy in 14 foot deep water. Start snorkleing seaward to reach an area 22 feet deep where hawksbill turtles and nurse sharks hang out.

After a day snorkeling Sand Island, check out the Key Largo Conch House for some cold drinks.

While the snorkeling at Sand Island is possible year-round, most snorkelers usually shoot for March through September. There is usually some rolling surf at most snorkeling sites off Key Largo, while you can expect the flatest surf conditions from June through August.

When using a dive boat charter to reach the dive site, make sure to reconfirm the reservation the afternoon prior. Most dive boats select the site the afternoon prior or even the morning of the dive. Also, most dive boats have a minimum passenger requirement in order to leave dock meaning they may cancel at the last minute, so when reverifying the afternoon prior ask how many reservations they have.

To reach the snorkeling in the Florida Keys by air, there are several options. The most popular option is to fly into Miami International Airport (MIA), which is served by all major US and international airlines. Also nearby, a potentially lower cost option is to fly into Ft Lauderdale airport (FLL). From either of these airports, you can rent a car to drive south on the Florida Turnpike a couple hours to reach the Florida Keys (watch out for automated cash-less toll highways along the way). Alternately, you can fly into Key West International Airport (EYW) which is served by several airlines including United/Silver Airways, Delta, USAir and Southwest. If you don’t mind coming into Key West, there is also the regular Key West Express ferry service (4 hours) that runs from Ft Myers.

Overall, Sand Island is the 33rd most popular snorkel dive spot of all 40 snorkeling dives in the Florida Keys. Several of the better snorkeling spots are nearby Sand Island including John Pennekamp State Park, Molasses Reef, White Bank Reef, Pickles Reef, Grecian Rocks and Christ Of The Deep.

Best Sand Island Snorkeling Review | Key Largo, Florida Keys

Snorkeling Key Largo (FL)


Local Contact(s):  John Pennekamp State Park (305) 451-1202; Key Largo (800) 822-1088; Quicksilver/Reef Roamer Catamaran Snorkeling Tours (305) 453-0110; Sundiver custom snorkeling tours (305) 451-2220.

Recommended Book:  "Snorkeling The Florida Keys" from Brad Bertelli

Recommended Map:  "Florida Keys Dive Map" from Franko Maps

Best Season:  Mar. - Sep.

Average Difficulty:  Moderate

Base Camp:  Key Largo Kampground (305) 451-1431

Luxury Loding:  Westin Beach Resort Key Largo; Jules Undersea Lodge (305) 451-2353

Breakfast Restaurant:  Harrietts, Travenier

Article Source:   Best Sand Island Snorkeling Review

GPS:  25.018107, -80.370698

Date Published:  7/21/2013

Date Updated:  7/24/2016

ID:  23627

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Sand Island Snorkeling Map


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