Top 5 Snorkeling Dive Spots in the Florida Panhandle

Snorkeling - Florida - Panhandle
Snorkeling - Florida - Panhandle

When traveling in the Florida Panhandle, you’re gonna want to find a great snorkeling dive spot. There are 150 miles of white sand beach in the Florida Panhandle and hundreds of fresh seafood restaurants and tons of attractions. 

But you don’t want to visit Florida and miss out on some amazing snorkeling opportunities. But, as always, you’ll want to pay attention to any warning flags that may be present before you enter the water. Check out our 5 Top Beach Safety Tips before planning your trip.

Now, come with us as we unpack the Top 5 Snorkeling Dive Spots in the Florida Panhandle. 

#1 Pensacola Beach Gulf Snorkel Reef 

Located about 450 feet from the Pensacola Beach fishing pier, the Pensacola Beach Gulf snorkel reef is the site of the old Pensacola Beach fishing pier. The old pier ultimately became an artificial reef housing an assortment of undersea critters.  

Here you can check out sharks, sea turtles, and more in barely 12 feet of water. If you travel east down the beach, you’ll encounter a shipwreck. 

Snorkeling - Florida - Panhandle

#2 Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary 

The Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary is composed of three separate reef areas off the shores of Navarre Beach Marine Park. It sits on Santa Rosa Island between Eglin Air Force Base property and the residential/commercial area of Navarre Beach. 

Two reefs can be found on the sound side with another reef located on the gulf coast side of Navarre Beach Marine Sanctuary. 

#3 Pensacola Beach Bay Snorkel Reef 

Located Southeast of Pensacola, Pensacola Beach Bay Snorkel Reef offers the opportunity to snorkel through a large offshore artificial reef.  

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The Pensacola Beach Bay Snorkel Reef was created by the Escambia County Marine Resources Division. The water ranges from 7 to 10 feet deep. So, while on a snorkeling dive off Pensacola, you’ll likely encounter a large quantity of marine life. 

Snorkeling - Florida - Panhandle

#4 St Andrews Jetties 

Located in St Andrews State Park in Panama City, Florida just southeast of Panama City Beach, St Andrews Jetties is known to be an easy dive. Also, the water visibility is usually great here and you can expect to find a plethora of diverse marine life.  

Jetty Rocks provide a home for colorful reef fish. The water here reaches depths of between three and 15 feet. So, if you’re lucky, you might even get to see some bottle-nose dolphins.  

#5 Destin Jetty 

Another great place to view sea life is located southeast of Fort Walton Beach at Destin Jetty. The snorkeling here is known to feature a wide range of diverse fish populations.  

Water clarity here has been known to be up to 30 feet and clear enough to see the L-shaped rocks of the jetty. Also, the depth of Destin Jetty ranges from 4 to 40 feet. So, be sure and stay up to speed on all the hot spots and sweet destinations in Florida.

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