Half Moon Cay (HMC) Snorkel?

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#1
Cold Springs (Reno), Nevada
55 Posts
Joined Dec 2017
We'll have an opportunity to go ashore on HMC on 19 March near the end of our Panama Canal cruise on the Oosterdam.

As an experienced snorkeler, I am wondering if a snorkeling excursion is necessary on HMC. I have no problem just getting in the water off the beach and amusing myself - if there is some sea life to see. If Google Maps can be relied on, it looks like there are some reef or rock formations within 500' of the north end of the beach, with a few scattered rocks off to the south. If anyone has snorkeled there I would like to hear your opinion.

What looks like a "better" place is on the south side of the tender docking area (in the ocean, not in the dock), with a path to a rather rocky looking shore. Has anyone gone in there, and if so, what did you think?

TIA
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#2
ohio
914 Posts
Joined Sep 2010
my husband has done that and it's ok - a lady had fruit loops she feed fish with -- that was interesting
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#3
Central Wisconsin
2,927 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by esimon
my husband has done that and it's ok - a lady had fruit loops she feed fish with -- that was interesting
That is so bad for the fish!
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#5
467 Posts
Joined Jan 2015
Originally posted by Sea42
That is so bad for the fish!


Sorry, this cracked me up. While Im sure it’s true , what don’t fish eat ??


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#6
United States
3 Posts
Joined Mar 2014
We just recently snorkeled at Half Moon Cay and enjoyed it. We The following is a synopsis of the information I pulled together from many sources on this website. Walk to the far-left side of the island to the rocky area by the stables (far left when looking at the island from the boat). After walking about 20 minutes, there is a small reef located about 50 yards off shore. It is shallow and easy to navigate as long as there are no waves. Avoid the fire coral. The current can be strong so only swim here if it is a calm day and be careful not to get thrown into the rocks. People have reported seeing turtles, barracudas, an octopus, sharks and stingrays. We saw a lot of fish but only one stingray off in the distance. There is a small white beach with no other access but from the water. Hang out there and just enjoy the peace and quiet. Make sure you allow time for the 20+ min walk back to the ship to catch a tender. The only other piece of advice I have is to go as early as you can. It does get more crowded for the walk there and back as the morning progresses. I hope this helps!
#7
Beautiful British Columbia, Canada
2,769 Posts
Joined Aug 2009
We had our own snorkel gear and snorkelled near the large cabana (??). We wanted to relax more than snorkel so didn't venture to the other side. There were some fish near the rocks plus the resident octopus. We also did the snorkel with stingrays while at Half Moon Cay which was fun.

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#8
Florida
2,848 Posts
Joined Dec 2007
Originally posted by dee2673
Sorry, this cracked me up. While Im sure it’s true , what don’t fish eat ??


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Maybe the fish go cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs
#9
The Big Easy
19,869 Posts
Joined Oct 2006
Originally posted by ddlslm
We just recently snorkeled at Half Moon Cay and enjoyed it. We The following is a synopsis of the information I pulled together from many sources on this website. Walk to the far-left side of the island to the rocky area by the stables (far left when looking at the island from the boat). After walking about 20 minutes, there is a small reef located about 50 yards off shore. It is shallow and easy to navigate as long as there are no waves. Avoid the fire coral. The current can be strong so only swim here if it is a calm day and be careful not to get thrown into the rocks. People have reported seeing turtles, barracudas, an octopus, sharks and stingrays. We saw a lot of fish but only one stingray off in the distance. There is a small white beach with no other access but from the water. Hang out there and just enjoy the peace and quiet. Make sure you allow time for the 20+ min walk back to the ship to catch a tender. The only other piece of advice I have is to go as early as you can. It does get more crowded for the walk there and back as the morning progresses. I hope this helps!
This is exactly what we did in November. There's lots of dead coral at first but the further you go, the better. There are pilings of an old pier that attract fish, and we very much enjoyed relaxing on that private beach for a little while. It was a nice break before swimming back.
#10
Florida
668 Posts
Joined Dec 2012
Also at HMC in November and have snorkeled there many times. An easy area to access to snorkel is along the right side of the beach as you face HMC from the ship. Bottom is all sand, water 2-5 feet deep. Snorkel along rock opposite side of boat entry jetty out to border ropes. There is a small reef with lots of fish and some fish along rocks. Only 5 minute walk from entry to HMC to area to enter water. Current and rough seas a non issue
#11
Central Wisconsin
2,927 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by dee2673
Sorry, this cracked me up. While Im sure it’s true , what don’t fish eat ??


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It's not just about that the fruit loops themselves are so bad for the fish. And what an animal eats doesn't mean you should feed it to them!

It is also bad because this type of feeding causes the more aggressive fish to displace the less aggressive which will lead to less diversity in the populations. So you end up seeing a lot fewer types of fish when you go snorkeling. So it's not only bad for the fish but for the snorkelers too.
I will now step down from my soapbox
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#12
Virginia, USA
3,901 Posts
Joined May 2007
Originally posted by ddlslm
We just recently snorkeled at Half Moon Cay and enjoyed it. We The following is a synopsis of the information I pulled together from many sources on this website. Walk to the far-left side of the island to the rocky area by the stables (far left when looking at the island from the boat). After walking about 20 minutes, there is a small reef located about 50 yards off shore. It is shallow and easy to navigate as long as there are no waves. Avoid the fire coral. The current can be strong so only swim here if it is a calm day and be careful not to get thrown into the rocks. People have reported seeing turtles, barracudas, an octopus, sharks and stingrays. We saw a lot of fish but only one stingray off in the distance. There is a small white beach with no other access but from the water. Hang out there and just enjoy the peace and quiet. Make sure you allow time for the 20+ min walk back to the ship to catch a tender. The only other piece of advice I have is to go as early as you can. It does get more crowded for the walk there and back as the morning progresses. I hope this helps!
Did not know about this location! We bring our own equipment and use the "snorkel area" which has been satisfactory but not nearly as great as what you are describing. Next time it's off to the stable area!
#13
467 Posts
Joined Jan 2015
Originally posted by Sea42
It's not just about that the fruit loops themselves are so bad for the fish. And what an animal eats doesn't mean you should feed it to them!



It is also bad because this type of feeding causes the more aggressive fish to displace the less aggressive which will lead to less diversity in the populations. So you end up seeing a lot fewer types of fish when you go snorkeling. So it's not only bad for the fish but for the snorkelers too.

I will now step down from my soapbox


No wish to offend anyone. And again, while I am sure it’s true, fish eat their own poop for heavens sake! But I guess it IS organic. I’d never feed them breakfast cereal regardless I am a believer that just because you can doesn’t mean you should. So I do get it. It just struck me funny.


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#14
Central Wisconsin
2,927 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by dee2673
No wish to offend anyone. And again, while I am sure it’s true, fish eat their own poop for heavens sake! But I guess it IS organic. I’d never feed them breakfast cereal regardless I am a believer that just because you can doesn’t mean you should. So I do get it. It just struck me funny.


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Absolutely no problem. My dog will eat the most disgusting things but then the vet insists no cheese!
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Coming up:
Marina 1/2019 - Pacific Serenade
Past Sailings:
Eurodam 6/2018 - Alaska (first cruise for grandson!)
Noordam 9/2012 - Mediterranean
Nieuw Amsterdam 1/2012 - Caribbean
Caribbean Princess 1/2010 - Caribbean
Star Princess 5/2006 - Baltic
Regal Princess 9/1997 - Alaska