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Zhongao Beach is one of the most popular snorkeling locations on Liuqiu Island. It is famous for its many visiting green sea turtles, which are pretty easy to see even a very short distance from shore. Triggerfish, trevallies, parrotfish and surgeonfish also abound at the reef. While prevalent with fish, the reef, however, is quite poor in coral.

Zhongao Beach, Liuqiu Island
Zhongao Beach, Liuqiu Island.

How to get to the Zhongao Beach snorkeling spot

Zhongao Beach, just southeast of the Baishawei Fishing Harbor, is one of  two popular beaches on the northeast end of Liuqiu Island. You can easily walk here on foot either by coming up from the southeast end of the harbor or walking up Guan Guang Gang Road. Walk up the road to where it turns right at the aquatic center into an area where some motor scooter rentals are offered.

It is free to enter and swim at this beach. There are organized snorkeling tours and various other organized groups in the water, but if you rent or bring your own gear, just go on in.

Zhongao Beach snorkeling map, Taiwan

Water entrance for snorkeling Zhongao Beach

Water entrance is easy, from a sandy and rocky beach. This is a shallow and easy beach suitable for beginners.

Zhongao Beach snorkeling exploration tips

You can go out 100 yards or so from the beach (which is itself only about 200 yards wide), as there are breakwaters around the harbor and an erosion control breakwater on the east end of the beach. These seem to block currents pretty well.

Green sea turtle at the surface of the sea at Zhongao Beach
A green sea turtle at the surface of the sea at Zhongao Beach.

Despite crowds in the water, fish and turtles are plentiful and easy to see, and the coral is in fair condition. Green sea turtles are abundant in Liuqiu waters and Zhongao Beach is one of the best locations to spot them. Taiwanese laws are very strict about swimming with sea turtles: keep a distance and never try to touch or chase them.

Coral beds at Zhongao Beach
The seabed at Zhongao Beach.

Among the fish species you may spot at this location are the whitespotted puffer, the Moorish Idol, the blackbelly triggerfish, and several species of parrotfish and butterflyfish.

The beach is often crowded with people swimming, snorkeling, floating on inflatable rafts, kayaking, or cruising around on stand-up paddle boards. Boats come in close to shore as well.

Turtle feeding on seaweed at Zhongao Beach
A green sea turtle feeding on seaweed at Zhongao Beach.

Restaurants and accommodation nearby

There is no beach restaurant at Zhongdao, but you’ll find a fair choice of places to eat in Liuqiu Township main streets and around the harbor.


  • Level required Beginner
  • Maximum depth15ft/5m
  • Water entranceFrom a sandy & rocky beach
  • Potential DangersBoat, paddle and kayak traffic
  • Visitor numbersHigh
  • Access costsFree

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.