10 Best Places to See Coral Reefs

Photo credit: andBeyond

If you are into scuba diving, then you know just how much marine life you can experience while underwater. One of the things you will like to see are the coral reefs. Coral reefs are known to add an amazing beauty to the underwater environment. Now that you are intrigued to check out coral reefs, what are the best places to see them?

Many people who are looking to enjoy coral reefs for the first time would have such a question. Luckily, we are here to help you learn more about the best places to see coral reefs. Check out the list below to get started.

The Great Barrier Reef

This coral reef is found in Australia. If you are ever in Australia, then this can be a nice way to spend your holiday. The Great Barrier Reef is great for snorkeling and is known to be the largest coral reef in the world. The area has both the outer and inner reefs to explore. In the coral reefs, you would see some of the exotic fish only in the area and nowhere else in the world.

If you want to experience the reef, make sure that you plan the visit during the dry months. At least the weather will be nice and the water will be clear. The diversity you will see at this coral reef will make you come back for more in the future.

The Palancar Reef

Photo credit: Dressel Divers

This is another top choice for those looking to see coral reefs. This reef is in the San Miguel de Cozumel area in Mexico. The coral reef is known for being the garden of sorts. This is because the reef has vibrant colors and formations that gives it the look of a flower garden.

The reef is beautiful to a point that some call it the underwater garden of Eden. If you are looking for a place that is different from the other coral reefs you have visited before, then this is a nice place to check out.

The area is also full of lobsters, stingrays, and barracudas. You will experience a variety of marine life like never before.

Raja Ampat

If you rate coral reefs based on the numbers, then Raja Ampat will be the top of the list. This coral reef in Indonesia is known for having more than 600 species living in the area. It is a pleasure looking at over 1200 varieties of fish swimming around the reefs.

Comparing to some other reefs around the world, we find that Raja Ampat reefs are in amazing condition. They remain unexplored for a long-time despite of the beauty that you get in these reefs. Well, if you are always looking to explore some of the best reefs with a variety of species, then Raja Ampat should be on your list.

Grand Central Station and Chimneys

These coral reefs are located in Fiji. People have named it the soft coral capital of the world. That is quite the title considering that there are thousands of coral reef destinations in the world.

These reefs have been preserved and cared for by the Namima Marine Reserve. The reefs boast of having over 1000 species of invertebrates, 400 corals, and many other marine life such as plants. Some of the species found here cannot be found in other reefs around the world.

Belize Barrier Reef

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This is another top choice for those who want to visit coral reefs. It is ranked as the second in the world in terms of size. With size, you can expect a lot more in terms of species. The area has a large assortment of plants, sea creatures, fish, and corals.

The coral reef has over 300 species documented and over 65 types of coral. Each time you take a dive in this area, be ready to experience looking at multiple species and beautiful corals.

Mayan Riviera

If you are ever in the Caribbean, consider checking out the Mayan Riviera. It is known for being a large coral reef with many species that those who like to dive will enjoy. The reef has over 100 types of hard corals, over 600 species of fish, and so much more waiting to be explored.

Many people love to visit the area as the water remains warm and clear for most months of the year. As such, it can be an ideal place to go for a vacation.

Scientists and conservationists are now fighting to keep destruction from reaching the coral reef. This is because the coral reef decline in the Caribbean has been on the rise.

Red Sea Coral Reef

This coral reef spans over several countries such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, and Eritrea. For such a long coastline, you will always have a great time checking it out. The coastline is 1,200 miles. It is easy to imagine the vast amount of variety of species you would get in such an area.

The coral reef is home to over 1,100 fish species and other types of marine life. Considering its location, you will find that the water is always warm. As such, you should end up having a great time diving in such water.

Andros Barrier Reef

Photo credit: The Andros Barrier Reef

This is one of the best places to experience coral reefs because of its size. It is known for being one of the longest barrier reefs in the world. It extends up to 124 miles in length and it is located in the Bahamas. The area has huge vertical cliff drops, deep ocean trenches, and mangrove areas. All these are great areas where corals would thrive.

The Andros Barrier Reef is good for housing the large marine life such as tiger sharks, barracuda, octopus, and a lot more. You do not even need to make early bookings to enjoy the reef. You simply have to show up and get into the reef to explore it.

Tubbatah Reef

The area is a large 24-acre preservation site that houses some of the best and rare species in the world. The reef is divided into two parts. One area is 5 kilometers wide while the other is 2 kilometers wide. Visitors will like it for the fact that you can easily see some of the reefs without diving too deep.

For those who need to explore the hidden reefs, then consider visiting the southern part. You will need a dive suit to go deep and enjoy the beauty of the area.

Little Cayman

Photo credit: Undersea Divers

The Cayman Islands are known for their many underwater treasures and one of them is the Little Cayman. The reef is covered by many colorful coral gardens. These gardens are filled with many types of tropical fish. Although it had seen a decline in the past decade, the conservation efforts have helped to rejuvenate the area. You can now have unforgettable moments whenever you dive in Little Cayman.


If you are looking for the best place to see coral reefs, then the list above should give you an idea of where to start. There might be more other places to see coral reefs, so you should consider checking them out also. Take your time to analyze an area before deciding that it would be perfect for coral reef divers.