A captivating display of dazzling corals, colourful fish and fascinating marine creatures, New Caledonia snorkeling proves to be among the best in the region. With few people, crystal clear waters and great conditions all year round, there’s never been a better time to slip on your fins, mask and snorkel, and discover the incredible beauty found just below the surface!
Discover the lagoonVoir plus
Snorkeling along underwater trails
Several underwater trails have been built to allow you to familiarise yourself with the incredible creatures that call the lagoon home, from fish and corals to sea turtles, stingrays and more. The best known and most popular underwater trail is found at Duck Island, around 10 minutes by water taxi from the beach of Anse Vata. Duck Island is a registered marine reserve and its underwater trail is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Just follow the marked underwater trail with a simple mask and snorkel for an experience unlike any other! Equipment is also available for hire if you happen to be interested in discovering what makes New Caledonia snorkeling so special but don’t have your own.
Anchored to the Tamanou reef in Sainte Marie Bay, the Pontoon in Nouméa offers wonderful scenery. The 400㎡ leisure complex is a unique and original way to explore the lagoon. A trail called the underwater tunnel will let you discover rich flora and fauna, especially on the outskirts of the coral. The floating restaurant welcomes you for a relaxing break, lunch or a night out.
Snorkeling can be practiced in Nouméa between the beaches of Lemon Bay, L'Anse Vata, and the Chateau Royal. There’s no shortage of spots around the country, and each island offers a new opportunity to go snorkeling. Don’t hesitate to board a water taxi and explore the lagoons as a family too. The diversity and captivating nature of New Caledonia snorkeling will surprise you, and the multicoloured fish are a real spectacle.
The best spots for snorkeling in New Caledonia
- Signal and Larégnère islets, Noumea. Coral formations and an incredible variety of marine life, from colourful fish to sea turtles, make these diving spots special.
- Deva underwater trail, Bourail.
- At the foot of the Jokin Cliffs, Lifou. Surrounded by cliffs comprised of ancient coral stone, this snorkeling cove is a fantastic place to dive below the surface.
- Southern Pleiades, Ouvéa. Perhaps best known for its manta ray inhabitants, this corner of Ouvéa makes for a great day trip destination.
- Amédée Lighthouse, Noumea. With crystal clear waters and calm waters, this beautiful diving spot is a good area to explore if you’re wanting to see sea turtles in the wild.
- Tibarama Island, Poindimié. Home to corals, rare ribbon eels and more, this islet has been referred to by some as one of the most beautiful islands in the archipelago.
- Hienga Island, Hienghène. Featuring an underwater snorkeling trail, the island boasts some beautiful scenery below the surface.
- Ténia Islet, Boulouparis. About an hour from Nouméa, the protected marine reserve allows divers to encounter sea turtles, colourful fish, dugongs, manta rays, dolphins and more.
- Duck Island Marine Reserve, Nouméa. An underwater trail is the highlight of this island found just off the coast of Nouméa.
- Oro natural swimming pool, Isle of Pines. The clear waters of the natural pool are home to brightly coloured fish and an array of corals.