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The Jokin Cliffs boast one of the most beautiful landscapes of New Caledonia, complete with gorgeous grey boulders, lush nature and turquoise water. This sheltered bay makes it great place for snorkeling. The coral reef is globally degraded here, but it shelters a decent variety of colorful fish species and you might be lucky enough to spot sharks and sea turtles in the deeper areas.

Snorkeling with fire clownfish at Jokin Cliffs

How to get to Jokin Cliffs?

This spot is located next to Doking, north of Lifou Island. Renting a car is advised, but hitchhiking also works pretty well on the island. From Wé, Lifou’s main village, it is a 40 minutes car ride to the spot. The site since is poorly indicated, so we recommend using a geo-tracking application to get there. A stairway leads to the cliffs’ foot. This 10 minute-walk down offers breathtaking views over the bay’s turquoise waters. Jinek Bay, an excellent snorkel spot, is located only 10 kilometers from Jokin Cliffs: don’t hesitate to explore both spots on the same day.

Jokin Cliffs snorkeling map, Lifou

Getting into the water for snorkeling Jokin Cliffs

Easy water entrance is made possible by a ladder fixed on the concrete platform at the bottom of the stairs.

Jokin Cliffs snorkeling tips

The coral reefs located where the bay opens to the sea are the main area of interest here. Inside the bay, the seabed is deprived of coral and underwater life is scarce. Mind the sea conditions before entering the water, as the reef is close to the open sea and quite exposed to waves and currents. The rocky shores bordering the bay ensure excellent underwater visibility on this spot (there are no sandy beaches nearby).

Eastern triangle butterflyfish at Jokin Cliffs

Starting from the stairs, you will first swim over a shallow rocky seabed (↕1.5-3m) punctuated with a few coral heads. This area does not teem with fish, but butterflyfish, triggerfish and wrasses can be spotted here and there. As you swim towards the reefs located at the bay’s outer side (on your left when facing the sea), water depth quickly increases. You will then discover coral flats (↕0.5-1m) almost breaking the water surface, separated by deeper areas (↕6-8m).

Coral is very degraded on the reefs, even if lively branching corals and soft coral (as sarcophyton) can still be observed. Giant clams, some of which boasting fluorescent-blue lips, are set in areas most exposed to daylight. Batfish, titan triggerfish, hawkfish and Jansen’s wrasse are some of the most commonplace species on this spot. Close to the cliffs, a few patches of sea anemones attract the usual cinnamon clownfish and a few threespot damselfish. The clownfish concentration can be impressive: sometimes more than 50 of them can be seen over only a few square meters.

Coral reef at Jokin Cliffs

Keep an eye on the deeper areas: lucky ones might spot a silvertip shark or a sea turtle there, but they are shy on this spot and will probably swim away if one tries to get too close.

Restaurants and accommodation nearby

A few restaurants and cafés are located close to the spot, but their opening times are unreliable.


  • Level required Intermediate
  • Maximum depth30ft/10m
  • Water entranceFrom a ladder
  • LifeguardNo
  • Visitor numbersMedium
  • Access costsFree
  • Restaurants nearbyYes
  • Public toilets & showersNo

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.