Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is, of course, world famous, but there’s some impressive snorkeling and diving on the west coast of the country, too. Not far from Exmouth, Ningaloo Marine Park was named a World Heritage Site in 2011. The protected area of 2,435 square kilometers (940 square miles) is home to an impressive array of marine life, from recently discovered sponges to sea turtles and manta rays. Gentle whale sharks and humpback whales inhabit the waters, as do dugongs, a cousin of manatees. If you want to stay dry while admiring the reef and its residents, glass-bottom boats at Turquoise Bay let you gaze at some of the 500 or so fish species and hundreds of coral varieties found here.

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Snorkeling in Turquoise Bay

It doesn’t get much better than snorkeling from the gorgeous white-sand beach of Turquoise Bay through the crystal-clear waters of Western Australia’s Ningaloo Reef. In what’s known as one of the greatest places on Earth for snorkeling, you’ll likely swim past sea turtles, sharks, rays, eels, and all kinds of exotic fish darting around the spectacular coral.

Paradise Found in Coral Bay

You can wade for what seems like forever through these shallow, crystal-clear waters... and then you’ll hit the edge of Ningaloo Reef! Throw on your snorkel gear and explore the depths of what I consider to be a reef even greater than Great Barrier. Then sit back and relax on the gorgeous beach and enjoy the laid-back atmosphere of this little town in its own slice of paradise along the Western Australian coast.

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