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I have only snorkeled in two spots in the keys - one off islamorada near Key largo (hen and chicken) and then here, the Grecian Rocks. Maybe it was the tide, but the Grecian Rocks was BY FAR superior! Our visibiity was amazing, we were SO CLOSE to the reef, it just grew from the floor to greet us! - it looked like you could not even swim over it, like you'd touch it, but I saw another snorkeler floating above it and realized it was possible - you just have to be careful not to stand up and kick the coral. The reef is large here - there is a lot of area to go over!! That makes a huge difference when snorkeling.
We did not have to look way down (another reason maybe the tide was lower, check for optimal time) as we did at the other site where everything seemed so far away.
I had a cheap under water camera and I was so close to the fish I got some good shots, anyway and some pretty video of a parrot fish that swam almost right up to me!! We saw huge French Angels, male and female stop light parrot fish and much more. I got some pretty pics for a cheap camera! Other snorkelers that traveled further got to see sea turtles and other critters. I was so mesmerised by following a huge gray angel and a huge French Angel I lost track of time. I did not even hear them sound the horn to come back - I was the last one (as usual) back on the boat! It's just so peaceful here - was the best snorkeling experience I have ever had. I went once in St Lucia and it was WAY too deep, nothing was close enough to see and I found it scary - I felt very vulnerable. And I do some local right off shore spots in South east Florida - but I have only been snorkeling off a boat 3 times and this, by far, was the most beautiful!!
Please rate if this was helpful... Also, I suggest Jon Pennekamp park to visit this area - I have not done any other, but they were very helpful and will also allow you to hire a guide (in advance) to show you around. I would definitely do that the next time, i just didn't know it was an option when I went.
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