Black Sand Reef Snorkeling

The 8th most popular snorkel dive spot in Curacao.

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North of Williamstad, the snorkeling at Black Sand Reef is known for good coral heads and diverse marine life. Also known as Playa Santu Pretu or Boka Santu Pretu, the cove offers some protection and usually clear water. This snorkeling spot is highlighted by the wreck of the Catharine, which lies upside down in roughly 18-22 feet of water. The main reef is about a 3-5 minute snorkel past the wreck.

In 1999, Hurricane Lenny passed near the island resulting in the first big waves in over 100 years. This wave action over a 24 hour period had a severe effect on the shallow water corals on west-facing coastlines. There was significant toppling of the massive coral colonies, along with bleaching and smothering. Similarly, in 2008, Tropical Storm Omar passed near the island producing heavy wave action along west-facing coastlines. The effects of these storm, along with occasional bleaching events, have left many of the snorkeling dive sites not appearing as they had in past photos nor seeming as described in the brief locally printed snorkeling dive descriptions, which tend to be older. While snorkeling off Curacao, you'll occasionally encounter some large, older coral formation remnants that give clues to the size of the past reefs. And, you may notice some small new growth occuring along the sand flats where new coral is taking hold in the cemented coral rubble, especially quick growing fire coral. Overall, there are 57 coral species providing habitat for over 500 fish species.

Overall, Black Sand Reef is the 8th most popular snorkel dive spot of all 14 snorkeling dives in Curacao.

MORE INFORMATION

Local Contact(s):  Caribbean Sea Sports snorkeling tours (+599-9) 462 2620; Go West Diving (+599-9) 864 0102; Porto Mari Sports Diving (999) 864-7539; Bounty Adventures (999) 767-9998.

Recommended Book:  "The Ultimate Snorkeling Book" from Wes Burgess

Recommended Map:  "Curacao Dive Map" from Franko Maps

Best Season:  Any

Base Camp:  Moonz Bed, Breakfast And Hostel Curacao; Scuba Lodge Suites

Luxury Loding:  Lions Dive Resort; Lodge Kura Hulanda And Beach Club; Acoya Hotel Suites; Baoase Resort; Avila Beach Hotel; Santa Barbara Beach Resort

Breakfast Restaurant:  Iguana Cafe, Willemstad

Reference Source:  click here https://www.curacao.com/

Article Source:   Best Black Sand Reef Snorkeling Review https://www.snorkelingdives.com/?id=24446

GPS:  12.303096, -69.149118

Date Published:  12/25/2011

Date Updated:  1/23/2019

ID:  24446

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