During the day, we walked down the hill from Land's End (couldn't hike it since it was closed off due to the govt shut down) passing the Cliff House. On separate visits, I was able to enjoy the sunset and long walks along the water. This isn't something I do often (or ever, tbh) since NY beaches are pretty filthy and cannot compare at all. If you're lucky, you'll get to see all of the sand dollars on the shore.
In the heart of the South Pacific, Fiji, famous for its white sand beaches, crystal clear waters and unspoiled natural environment, is made up of more than 300 small islands. The perennial favorites are the Mamanuca and Yasawa island groups, just north of Fiji’s main island, Viti Levu. There you will find a kind of paradise you can’t find anywhere else. Snorkeling and diving, relaxing in the shade of a palm tree, and feeling the soft sea air drift by while sipping on a fruity umbrella drink — it’s heavenly.
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Many people make the pilgrimage to Fiji to worship reefs resplendent in forests of lush, soft corals. But here’s the catch: you can’t necessarily find the best snorkeling spots near every island throughout the chain. Our top pick in the whole country is Somosomo Strait, found between the islands of Taveuni and Vanua Levu. And, yes, reefs do encircle the islands starting from shore, but to access the best of the best, namely Rainbow Reef, a boat tour is a must.
Some commercial snorkeling organizations require snorkelers at their venue to wear an inflatable vest, similar to a personal flotation device. They are usually bright yellow or orange and have a device that allows users to inflate or deflate the device to adjust their buoyancy. However, these devices hinder and prevent a snorkeler from free diving to any depth. Especially in cooler water, a wetsuit of appropriate thickness and coverage may be worn; wetsuits do provide some buoyancy without as much resistance to submersion. In the tropics, snorkelers (especially those with pale skin) often wear a rashguard or a shirt and/or board shorts in order to help protect the skin of the back and upper legs against sunburn.
A snorkel can be useful when scuba diving as it is a safe way of swimming face down at the surface for extended periods to conserve the bottled air supply, or in an emergency situation when there is a problem with either air supply or regulator. Many dives do not require the use of a snorkel at all, and some scuba divers do not consider a snorkel a necessary or even useful piece of equipment, but the usefulness of a snorkel depends on the dive plan and the dive site. If there is no requirement to swim face down and see what is happening underwater, then a snorkel is not useful. If it is necessary to swim over heavy seaweed which can entangle the pillar valve and regulator if the diver swims face upward to get to and from the dive site, then a snorkel is useful to save breathing gas.
Aruba is a small island — just 19.6 miles long — and boasts ideal temperatures year round, thanks to the constant trade winds (which helps with the humidity and limits the annoyance of mosquitoes). When travel to other islands in the Caribbean is dicey, Aruba is the optimal choice because it is located in the Netherland Antilles, outside of the hurricane belt.
Another South Pacific island group (see a pattern here?), the Cook Islands are pretty far off the map. OK, not too far, but they are considerably less visited than some of their neighbors. These tiny islands are named after James Cook, the intrepid man who discovered them. With few amenities, this is the best place to find your inner castaway and escape modern life. The islands see similar weather to the rest of the area, with temperatures hot and humid all year round.
While some snorkeling spots can be tricky the guides have an exceptional knowledge of their surroundings, constantly making sure that you remain safe. Most importantly, most of the best snorkeling sites in the Galapagos are actually quite shallow, meaning you can swim and walk out from the beach and then simply swim and follow the coastline to the vivid reefs. Not only does the water depth make it safe for inexperienced snorkelers, it keeps you close to some of the most evocative marine life.