Established in 1999, the Masia Blanca Marine Reserve is the main marine protected area on the Costa Daurada. It protects a rocky reef that outcrops in front of Coma-ruga large sandy beaches. If you can snorkel the shallows near the beach, a boat trip is required to discover the spot’s most beautiful areas, where scorpionfish, small groupers and moray eels can sometimes be seen.

Two-banded seabream at Reserva Marina Masía Blanca
The two-banded seabream is one of the most common fish species in the reserve.

How to get to Masía Blanca Marine Reserve snorkeling spot?

The Masia Blanca Marine Reserve is located in Coma-ruga, about 30km north of Tarragona. To find the reserve, reach this point (located opposite the spot) and park in the nearby streets. The snorkeling area is not marked with buoys, but you can ask the marine reserve information desk to show you the direction.

Masía Blanca Marine Reserve snorkeling map

Water entrance for snorkeling Masía Blanca Marine Reserve

Enter the water from the sandy beach, in front of the spot. If you plan to go further than the area near the beach (zone 1 on the map above), take a diving flag with you.

Masía Blanca Marine Reserve snorkeling exploration tips

The Masia Blanca Marine Reserve can be divided into 3 snorkeling areas:

1 / A 40m wide band which extends right in front of the beach (zone 1 on the map). It has shallow sandy and rocky bottoms (↕2-6ft/0,5-2m) where striped red mullet, wrasse, two-banded seabream and sometimes rarer species like the zebra seabream can be seen. This area is suitable for beginners and children.

Zebra seabream at Reserva Marina Masía Blanca
The zebra seabream, usually pretty rare in shallow areas, can be seen in the reserve, sometimes close to the beach.

2 / After having snorkeled over large expanses of sand, you will reach the first rocky ridges, which start some 100-130m from the beach (zone 2 on the map). Here, the seabed is rocky, covered with algae and sponges (↕10-15ft/3-5m). This fairly deep area is not recommended if you snorkel only from the surface. Two banded seabream, sargo and salema are among the most common fish species in this perimeter. In this area, take a diving flag with you, because boats and jet ski sometimes pass nearby (do not go beyond the line of yellow buoys, which can be seen on either side of the reserve at about 170-180m from the beach).

3 / About 200m from the beach is the heart of the reserve (zone 3 on the map), where rocky ridges and maerl banks (accumulations of coralline algae) are found some 10-12ft/3-4m deep. Due to the distance between the beach and this area (and because boats are frequently seen crossing the area), it is recommended to get there by boat. Some Coma-ruga operators offer snorkeling tours to the reserve. Here, you can discover the fantastic underwater diversity of Masia Blanca, where moray eels, congers, small groupers and brown meagre are occasionally sighted.

Salema at Masía Blanca
A salema photographed in the reserve’s shallows.

Underwater visibility can be poor in the reserve, located in the middle of a sandy beach and near a stream mouth.

Restaurants and accommodation nearby

There are no restaurants just in front of the spot. Walking or driving towards the center of Coma-Ruga by the seafront, you’ll find several restaurants along the beach and near the port.




 

  • Level required Advanced
  • Protected areaReserva Marina Masía Blanca
  • Maximum depth30ft/10m
  • Water entranceFrom a sandy beach
  • Potential DangersBoats/jet ski crossing the area
  • LifeguardYes, in summer
  • Visitor numbersMedium
  • Access costsFree

MAP Spot

These spots are only recommended to good swimmers, in good physical conditions, and with excellent snorkeling skills. These spots can experience currents, moderate waves, important depths, tight or narrow passages, or tricky water entrance, and can be located near hazardous areas (channels, boat traffic, strong currents…). The distance to swim to reach the most interesting snorkeling areas can be important - up to 500 meters. The “advanced” category includes drift snorkeling (transported by currents) and snorkeling off the coast.

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.