Diving Tips for Florida Keys SCUBA and Snorkeling

Scuba Diving Shops

Scuba Diving Tips

  • Before booking a reef trip, check out weather conditions; its best not to go out in rough seas. Poor visibility, strong winds and waves reduce safe interaction at the reef.
  • Remember that even the lightest touch with hands or equipment can damage sensitive coral polyps.
  • Snorkelers should wear float coats - inflatable snorkel vests - to allow gear adjustment without standing on the coral. Never stand upon a coral reef!
  • To avoid contact with the ocean bottom, divers should only use the weight needed and practice proper buoyancy control. Areas that appear empty may support new growth if left undisturbed.
  • Avoid wearing gloves and touching or collecting marine life. Most tropical fish captured die within a year. Queen conch is a protected species, and cannot be taken.
  • Resist the temptation to feed fish, seabirds and marine mammals; it changes their natural behavior and diet.
  • Remember, its illegal to harvest coral in Florida and buying it at local shops only depletes reefs elsewhere in the world.
  • Bring back any trash you find and recycle it, if possible.
  • Snorkel aware, dive with care!


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Public Boat Ramps in the Keys.
There may be fees for launching boats at these sites.
• Marathon MM 54 bayside
• Marathon, Dodge Lake, Aviation Blvd. & Harbor Drive, behind airport, Bayside
• Marathon, MM 49, Bayside
• West of 7 Mile Bridge, MM 40 Bayside
• Bahia Honda State Recreation Area, MM 37 Oceanside
• Big Pine Key, Koehn Drive
• Spanish Harbour Channel, MM 34 Bayside
• Blimp Base, Cudjoe Key, MM 20
• Big Coppitt, MM 11 Oceanside
• Stock Island, MM 5.2 Oceanside
• Simonton Street, Key West Harbor, Key West
• Smathers Beach, South Roosevelt Blvd., Key West
• Garrison Bight, North Roosevelt Blvd., Key West