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Located on the island of Solarte, which faces the town of Bocas del Toro, Hospital Point has good snorkeling. Around the rocky point, you can explore a reef flat and a drop-off supporting a diversity of reef fish species. In particular, you may see shoals of tangs, parrotfish, snappers, damselfish and many other colorful creatures.

Hospital Point, Bocas del Toro
Hospital Point, Bocas del Toro.

How to get to Hospital Point snorkeling spot?

Hospital Point, or Punta Hospital, is the name of the rocky point at the northwest end of Solarte, in the Bocas Del Toro archipelago. It is located about 2250 meters as the crow flies from Bocas Town. There are several ways to get there:

  • On a snorkeling trip. Some boat tours offered in Bocas include snorkeling at Hospital Point, but as it is not a very popular location, it is generally not included in standard tours. Check this point beforehand with the tour agency. Tour price is from $35 per person (2022).
  • By water taxi. If you are staying on one of the surrounding islands, you can ask a taxi boat to drop you at the location, agreeing to a return time with the captain.
  • By kayak, from the northwest of Solarte or from the southwest of Bastimentos. Pay attention to the boat traffic. Once at the spot, you will find buoys on which to attach your kayak.

Hospital Point snorkeling map

Water entrance for snorkeling Hospital Point

We recommend entering the water from the small beach (about in front of the small white house) or from your boat/kayak.

Hospital Point snorkeling exploration tips

Once in the water, the best way to explore this spot is to swim all around the rocky point. You will first snorkel over a reef drop-off (↕30 ft/10 m) covered with gorgonians and sponges, before reaching a shallow reef flat that extends all around the rocky point (↕2-6 ft/0.5-2 m).

Reef life at Hospital Point
Grunt at reef at Hospital Point.

On the west side, the seabed is shallower and the species are a little different. Perhaps a little less attractive than around the drop-off on the eastern side of the point, but with better visibility since less deep.

Stoplight parrotfish at Hospital Point
A stoplight parrotfish.

At this location, the seabed is quite colorful (covered with gorgonians, sponges, sea anemones and sea urchins) and you can see various species of fish there: several types of parrotfish and schooling surgeonfish, couples of butterflyfish, schoolmaster snapper, bluehead wrasse, hamlet, and numerous juvenile yellowtail damselfish playing hide and seek among the sponges.

Brittle star and coral
Brittle star and coral.

Occasionally, you might encounter trumpetfish, pufferfish, needlefish, triggerfish and reef squid.

This spot usually has no current, but the water can be cloudy at times, especially in the rainy season.

Restaurants and accommodation nearby

There are several accommodations in the small village of Solarte, between 300 and 800 meters south of the spot. If you’re staying there, you might consider getting in the water from one of the pontoons and snorkeling to Punta Hospital.


  • Level required Intermediate
  • Maximum depth10ft/3m on the flats, +30ft/10m on the drop-off
  • Water entranceFrom a small beach, a kayak or a tour boat
  • LifeguardNo
  • Visitor numbersLow
  • Access costsFree (by kayak or swimming from the nearby resort) or cost of a snorkeling tour
  • Restaurants nearbyNo

MAP Spot

These spots are accessible to anyone with basic snorkeling skills, and feeling comfortable in the water and with his snorkeling gear. You will enter the water from the shore (beach, pontoon, ladder, rocks) or from a boat. The water height in the sea entrance area is reasonable, but you will not necessarily be within your depth. Moderate currents can occur in the area, even when the sea conditions are good. The distance to swim to reach the most interesting snorkeling areas of the spot does not exceed 200 meters.

This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell. You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.