Snorkel Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley

Located just a few miles south of the town of San Pedro on Ambergris Caye, the Hol Chan Marine Reserve is a large protected marine environment famous for its rich abundance of coral reefs and aquatic flora and fauna.

Why You Have to Snorkel Han Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley

Declared a protected habitat in 1987, the Hol Chan Marine Reserve measures more than 4,400 acres (18 square kilometers) in size.

The name “Hol Chan” is Maya for “Little Cut” and refers to a natural break in the Belize Barrier Reef. The reserve is home to three kinds of sea turtles, two kinds of dolphins, the West Indian manatee, lobsters, eels, stingrays, sea anemones, dozens of species of fish, and three kinds of coral.

The reserve is divided into four zones:

  • Zone A – In and around the coral reef where fishing is prohibited but snorkeling and scuba diving are permitted.
  • Zone B – An area of sea grass beds where fishing is permitted.
  • Zone C – The mangrove swamps of southern Ambergris Caye where limited sport fishing is permitted.
  • Zone D – Popularly known as Shark Ray Alley, the zone is primarily used for snorkeling but some limited fishing is permitted in the area.

Shark Ray Alley is the local nickname for a shallow section where swift currents attract large groups of nurse sharks and stingrays, a popular destination for scuba diving.

Where in Belize Is Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley Located?

The reserve begins at the southern end of Ambergris Caye and continues south along the Belize Barrier Reef unto the waters offshore of Caye Caulker.

When Is the Best Time to Snorkel Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley

Variations in tide and weather affect which creatures can be seen in the reserve but the robust ecosystem means that visitors can experience the majesty of Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley all year round.

Best Way to Get to Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley

As the reserve stretches between the islands of Caye Caulker and Ambergris Caye, most visitors to Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley begin their trips from one of those two islands.

Best Way to Experience Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley

All fishing, scuba diving and snorkeling in the reserve requires the payment of a fee. The government does not collect these fees directly but instead from licensed tour guides. Visitors must contract with a licensed operator in order to enter and enjoy snorkeling, sport fishing, or diving in the reserve.

Contact us if you have questions or would like to book a tour on Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley.


Top Places to Stay in Belize

Belize Tour Companies and Travel Agents

Belize Real Estate Opportunities

February 20, 2018

Teds Travel – The wonders of Belize

Teds Travels – The wonders of Belize Anyone who doesn’t know about Belize finds the travel destination fascinating. Read more:...
Read More
February 20, 2018

Belize contributes to ‘Dollar for the Caribbean Relief Fund’

BELIZE CITY, Belize (CMC) — The Belize Tourism Board (BTB) has collaborated with tourism industry stakeholders in raising US$59,934 as...
Read More
February 16, 2018

Caribbean surpasses 30 million mark, a major victory in spite of hurricanes

BARBADOS — Despite the catastrophic hurricanes that pummelled several islands last September, the Caribbean has reached a new benchmark, surpassing...
Read More
February 16, 2018

Los Angeles to Belize from $391 R/T [United/COPA]

Information is valid at time of publication. So sometimes you may not find the price mentioned in the post (ex....
Read More
February 16, 2018

Beaches, Mayan Ruins and Casinos: How Can Belize Use Different Types of Tourism for Economic Boost?

When you think of the reasons that draw tourists to Belize, you’re naturally likely to think straigh taway of the...
Read More
February 16, 2018

Belize: Reef, Rainforests, and Ruins

Belize is the perfect place for a little R & R, reef and rainforest, and if that's not enough, you...
Read More
February 16, 2018

Belikin launches limited edition of artisan beer bottles

Belikin, the beer of Belize, officially launched its Limited Edition beer bottles on Friday, February 9th at Naia Resort and...
Read More
February 16, 2018

Belize: Un-Belize-able

It's Anthony Everett's turn to escape the New England winter. His destination: Belize, a tourist destination known for the largest...
Read More
February 16, 2018

Turneffe Island Resort Offers Romantic Travel Deal

Up Your Valentine’s Day Game with a Romantic Adventure Getaway Off the Coast of Belize Last minute vacation package deal...
Read More
1 2 3 11




Leave a Comment


Welcome! Login in to your account

Remember me Lost your password?

Don't have account. Register

Lost Password


Please support the site
By clicking any of these buttons you help our site to get better