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beginner snorkeler suggestions?

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beginner snorkeler suggestions?

I am camping at cinnimon bay with a friend who is not a natural in the water- and has fears that they hope and plan to overcome in order to enjoy the marine life and learn snorkeling.

What are you suggestions for the first places to snorkel for them to build confidence.

I plan to build up during the week to some of the more exciting places, that might be a little more of a strong swimmer situation.

It scares this swimmer to be away from a place to put their feet down -

any suggestions?

Thanks Kathleen

Hamilton, New Jersey
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11. Re: beginner snorkeler suggestions?

Take note of the post a couple higher above about the caribbean salt content. You will float very easy when you stay relaxed. As a matter of fact, it's somewhat difficult to dive in the caribbean while snorkeling without some weights. If you need a vest for comfort do that, but you will not need it. The key is to relax. Floundering/panicking is probably the only way to get yourself in trouble. Enjoy, there is alot to see Kathleen

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12. Re: beginner snorkeler suggestions?

I can tell you how my 3 children began - they are now in in their teens and absolutely LOVE the water. We also used this same principle with our Meme who is in her 60's. I purchased a noodle at the dollar store - it bends easily into their suitcases. We started with just the mask - they would float along and stick their head in & out of the water; from their we added the snorkel part. Like one of the post - the buoyancy is incredible - I don't even use fin anymore! Maybe a little rum punch before hand will help to relax - HA! Have a blast in STJ!!

Greensboro, NC
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13. Re: beginner snorkeler suggestions?

I'll make a slightly different suggestion. Make sure to get one of the newer snorkels with the valve at the top that keeps water out. My sister got ours at BJ's club for only $11 for the whole set! Sounds crappy, but worked great! That valve really keeps the water out and makes snorkeling easier.

The float/noodle/vest idea is good too. There's plenty of good snorkeling just floating on top of the water.

Oh, yeah. A good idea we saw (but didn't do) was to wear a doo rag on your head. Keeps the hair out of the way AND keeps your scalp from getting burned!

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14. Re: beginner snorkeler suggestions?

Cinnamon Bay is a great place to start unless it is windy. If there is enough wind to make waves, go to Maho Bay, which is more protected from the wind, especially along the east (right) side. Francis Bay (left side) is even better, although a little harder to get to than Maho. At all these beaches the slope into the water is very gradual and is all smooth sand. You can snorkel along the rocks close to shore without ever getting in too deep to put your feet down.

I would not start with Salt Pond or Lameshur, which have rockier entries. You also have to swim further to get to good snorkeling.

Most of the other advice I can think of has been covered by others except one very important tip: if you are snorkeling in the heat of the day, WEAR A SHIRT. Even the best sunscreen will not protect pasty northern skin from that tropical sun! If you are very susceptible to sunburn, wear sunscreen AND a shirt. Also, get lots of waterproof sunscreen on the backs of your legs, especially the upper curve of the calf and the backs of the thighs (especially for women).

15. Re: beginner snorkeler suggestions?

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