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.

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Close to this island is a little island that provides excellent snorkeling opportunities. You may even spot a few reef sharks. Bathtub-warm water and fine sand beaches kept me here for over three weeks. It will do the same for you. Visit between November and March for the best weather and the fewest people. May through October sees a harsh monsoon season that shuts the island down. The best way to get there is by boat from Pak Bara.
Tour companies and guides are given specific times for when their guests can snorkel at a particular site. This restriction enhances the experience, as your view of a shark won’t be interrupted by another group’s flippers. The best place to snorkel without a guide is a beach close to the Finch Bay Galapagos Hotel, which is reached by passing iguanas and sea lions that sit on the sand along the way.
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