This page have been written in collaboration with Maham (1 spot)

The boat trip to Klein Curacao, a small coral island just 10 miles off the main island, is one of the most popular day tours around Curacao. The leeward side of the island, fringed by a half-a-mile long white sand beach, provide good snorkeling opportunities. The seabed is not spectacular (with very few coral and fish at snorkeling depths), but it is visited by many sea turtles – maybe the best snorkeling spot in Curacao to meet them.

Smooth trunkfish at Klein Curacao

How to get there?

The island of Klein Curacao is lying some 10 miles off the southeast point of Curacao. Several local operators offer full-catered day boat trips to the island. Most of boats are departing from Caracas Bay or Spanish Water early in the morning (around 6:30-8am) and are back in the afternoon. Some operators can arrange optional pick-up and drop-off in main Curacao’s hotels and resorts. Prices starts around $100 per person for the day, all-inclusive. If you suffer from seasickness, be aware that the boat trip to the island is quite long (1:45 to 2 hours each way) and can be rough and wavy, especially on the way to Klein Curacao.

Klein Curacao snorkeling map

Water entrance

You can enter the water anywhere from the half-a-mile long sandy beach. However, to reach the snorkeling area drawn on the map below (where you’ll have the best chances to spot sea turtles), we advise you to enter the water just past the last beach hut, when coming from the pontoon (see map above).

Exploration

The recommended snorkeling zone covers the area between the beach and the reef, some 150 meters away. The seabed is made up of seagrass and sandy beds (↕3-15ft/1-5m), sprinkled with some small rocks and coral bommies. Among the (few) fish you may encounter in this area are juvenile blue tang, bluehead wrasse, sergeant major, and some inquisitive smooth trunkfish.

Snorkeling with green sea turtles in Klein Curacao

The main reason why visitors snorkel Klein Curacao is the opportunity to see the sea turtles – mainly green sea turtles. By crisscrossing the area, you should not have to wait too long before seeing them. They are generally feeding or resting on the seagrass meadows. Do not disturb or touch the turtles, and keep a distance when they are coming up to the surface to breath.

Blue tang in Klein Curacao

At a 120-150 meters distance from the shore, you will reach a slope covered with corals (↕25-30ft/8-1-0m), but the reef is too deep to be fully enjoyed while snorkeling from the surface of the sea. The reef is by far the most fishy area, and you may come across dozen of fish species here, including hogfish, butterflyfish, barracuda, Bermuda chub and even French angelfish.

Restaurants and accommodation

There are no permanent residents on the island. All day tours to Klein Curacao includes water, refreshment and a BBQ lunch on the beach. Check when booking.

 

  • Level required Beginner
  • Maximum depth30ft/10m on the drop off
  • Water entranceEasy, from a sandy beach
  • LifeguardNo
  • Visitor numbersMedium to high
  • Access costsDay tour price (from $100pp.)
  • Restaurants nearbyLunch is included in all day tours

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.