A common January trend is picking up a new hobby. That ‘new year, new me’ mentality has kicked in and you’re looking for something fun to do in 2021. This hobby could be snorkelling! A popular activity around Perth, snorkelling is an interesting spin on the regular beach trip.
I fell in love with snorkelling when I was in Year 10 Outdoor Education. On a three day camp to Rottnest Island, I was amazed at how accessible snorkelling was and how much of the ocean I could see with just some flippers and a mask! Ever since then I’ve been roping everyone that would listen into coming snorkelling with me, and making them fall in love with the hobby too. If you’re a snorkelling novice, we’ve listed some of the spots best suited to beginners!
Snorkel SPot 1: Point Peron, Rockingham
An hour south of Perth, Point Peron falls within Shoalwater Marine Park and is a popular spot for local snorkelers and divers. Its underwater trails promises sights of coral, reefs and schools of fish. If you’re really lucky you’ll get a visit from some dolphins who have been known to swim very close to shore or a camouflaged sea dragon which can easily be mistaken for seaweed! Point Peron have several sites off the coast that snorkelers of all levels can check out before heading out.
SNorkel Spot 2: Mettams Pool, Trigg
Mettams often makes a recommended snorkelling list and it’s for good reason. Just south of Hillary’s Boat Harbour, these limestone reefs house an array of different sea animals from zebra stripped morwong fish to the multi-coloured wrasse! What’s better is you don’t have to go out too far to see fish. The beach’s ring-shaped rock formation forms a two metre deep lagoon making this part of WA’s coastline easily accessible. However the outer edge of the reef can occasionally bring strong surges and would be best suited to those who are regular snorkelers.
Snorkel Spot 3: Bennion Beach, Trigg
Slightly further south from Mettams is the hidden gem that is Bennion Beach! Rarely spoken about, Bennion is located in between Mettams Pool and Trigg beach and draws less crowds of people but promises the same beauty that Mettams does. The great thing about both are the number of eateries in the area. Some local favourites include Yelo where you can grab one of their cooling smoothies or Canteen Trigg whose fish tacos make for a great post-snorkelling meal!
Snorkel Spot 4: The Basin, Rottnest Island
If you are keen on making a day trip to Rottnest Island, then be sure to visit The Basin for some swimming and snorkelling! Situated to the north of the island, close to the ferry arrival and departure point, the Basin is a frequent for many families because of its shallow depth and calm beach. Its multiple tidal pools makes it a popular hangout for a casual swim. However it also makes a great snorkelling spot with clear water, brightly-coloured coral and schools of fish. The warm Leeuwin Current that surrounds the island brings over 130 different species of tropical fish to see! The Basin is one of the only spots patrolled with lifeguards stationed from 8:30am to 4:30pm every day.
Snorkel Spot 5: Omeo Wreck Dive Trail, Coogee
Centred around the Omeo Shipwreck, the dedicated snorkel trail will be enjoyable for anyone looking to explore the inner (but shallow) depths of the ocean. This snorkelling spot adds something more interesting than your average trail, with artificial reef and underwater art sculptures that act as homes for aquatic life. Snorkelers and divers are likely to see an array of fish as well as crayfish and molluscs! The trail can be accessed via Socrates Parade and ranges from two to seven metres in depth. The City of Cockburn have provided a guide map that showcases these depths.
Before you plan your trip, there are a few things you should keep in mind. Check the weather conditions before heading out as ideal snorkelling conditions would be a sunny day and low tide. Never go out alone and make sure to swim within your depths. Not all beaches will have lifeguards there or close by so remember to take some precautionary measures.
Although we’re unable to go international, snorkelling along WA’s coastline will make you feel like you’re on an exotic holiday. All you need is a mask, flippers and some good weather and you’ll be able to take advantage of one of the best activities the Perth summer can offer!
For more WA adventure activities, check out Your WA Tour Guide here.