West of San Juan and north of Rincon on the western coast of Puerto Rico, the snorkeling at Steps Beach is very popular for its massive elkhorn coral forest. The beach is located within the Tres Palmas Federal Marine Reserve (Reserva Marina Tres Palmas). During Steps Beach snorkeling, you may encounter spanish hogfish, barracuda, french angelfish, chubs, grunts, blue tangs and turtles amongst the sea fan and elkhorn coral habitat. The best time of year for snorkeling is only during the summer months since there are strong western swells in the winter months creating dangerous surf. The best snorkeling at Steps Beach is in July.
To reach Puerto Rico by air, fly into Luis Munoz Marin International Airport (SJU) on the northeast side of the island. From the airport, your best bet is to rent a car to drive to the far western side of the island. While snorkeling in the Rincon area, also consider taking the 40 minute boat ride out to Desecheo Island, which is also known for good diving.
Tip: After snorkeling at Steps Beach, there are two other nearby snorkel spots including Cayo Ron and Cayo El Negro.
Overall, Steps Beach is the 16th most popular snorkel dive spot of all 17 snorkeling dives in Puerto Rico.