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Lying between Malta and Tunisia, Lampedusa is the southernmost of the Italian islands. Along its southwest coast is Rabbit Beach (Spiaggia dei Conigli) and its islet, Rabbit Island (Isola dei Conigli). It is undoubtedly the most beautiful beach in Lampedusa, and one of the most spectacular in all of Europe. The rocky islet and its warm waters protected by a nature reserve make it a gorgeous snorkeling spot, with excellent visibility and rich biodiversity.

Dusky grouper in Rabbit Island
A dusky grouper noted under a rocky outcrop.

How to get to the Isola dei Conigli snorkeling spot

Isola dei Conigli (Rabbit Island) is a rocky islet near the southwest coast of Lampedusa. This faces the Spiaggia dei Conigli (Rabbit Beach), from which it is separated by a short distance. From the Lampedusa harbor, it takes about 15 minutes by car to reach the path that descends to the beach, and then a 20 minute walk to get to the shore.

Access to the beach is restricted to 550 visitors per day and you must book well in advance online at the Lampedusa Island Nature Reserve’s website. If you haven’t booked on time, there are times when a small amount of extra visitors are allowed, but you have to come early in the morning to get in line at the entrance.

This area is an important nesting site for loggerhead turtles in the Mediterranean. Because of this, the beach is closed at night to protect the turtles.

Isola dei Conigli snorkeling map, Lampedusa
Isola dei Conigli snorkeling map, Lampedusa.

Water entrance for snorkeling Isola dei Conigli

You can enter the water anywhere from the sandy beach. If you want to snorkel the islet’s edge, the recommended entry is at the southern end of the beach (on your left if you are facing the sea).

When the tide is low and the sandy isthmus connecting it to the mainland is revealed, you can see it is not truly an island. At high tide, the sand-covered walkway is not visible, but the island can be reached by walking through the water, which is between a foot and a foot and a half deep.

Isola dei Conigli snorkeling exploration tips

This spot has a very extensive snorkeling area, which includes the bay which is approximately 275 yards wide and faces the beach This also includes the surroundings of Rabbit Island, to the east of the bay (snorkeling area 1 on the map).

Advanced snorkelers can consider snorkeling back to the beach by following the eastern shores of the islet (itinerary 2 on the map, the whole islet tour is about 1,000 yards.

Colorful fish in Lampedusa
Isola dei Conigli features numerous fish in most areas. In this picture, salema, seabream and damselfish.

Rabbit Island features a diversity of marine environments. This includes extensive sandy beds that face the beach, Posidonia meadows on either side of the bay and around the islet, as well as rocky areas especially along the shore.

If the depth is moderate near shore, it can reach 60 feet in the center of the bay and on the drop-offs.

A pair of flying gurnards over Isola dei Conigli seagrass beds
A pair of flying gurnards over Isola dei Conigli sandy beds.

Snorkeling at Isola dei Conigli offers the opportunity to observe interesting fish species. Near the beach, you sometimes find yourself surrounded by hundreds of saddled breams, fed by some visitors. In the rocky areas, the Mediterranean parrotfish and the dusky grouper are two emblematic species that are easy to spot.

Don’t forget to explore the sandy beds, where pairs of flying gurnards can be encountered.

Mediterranean parrotfish terminal phase
The colorful Mediterranean parrotfish (terminal phase).

The bay is well protected from the wind, which allows you to enjoy calm seas most of the time. Boat traffic is prohibited in the bay, but if you go outside the protected area, take a diving buoy with you.

Restaurants and accommodation nearby

There is no restaurant on the beach, but there is one at the top of Spiaggia dei Conigli  which is before the walk into the natural reserve. You can also bring a picnic. Be sure to take enough water with you.

Snorkel Isola dei Conigli’s crystal-clear waters in this amazing video 👇 shared by Slowemotions!


  • Level required Beginner
  • Protected areaLampedusa Island Nature Reserve
  • Maximum depth60 feet/18 meters
  • Water entranceFrom a sandy beach
  • LifeguardNo
  • Visitor numbersMedium
  • Access costsFree (by reservation only)
  • Restaurants nearbyNo

MAP Spot

These snorkeling spots are accessible to beginners and kids. You will enter the water gradually from a beach, or in a less than 3ft. deep area. The sea is generally calm, shallow, with almost no waves or currents. These spots are usually located in marked and/or monitored swimming areas. It is not necessary to swim long distances to discover the sea life.

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.