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Coastal Living magazine lists 10 great places in the U.S., Caribbean and Central America where you can try the fun, in their July-August issue.

First on the list if Dean’s Blue Hole, Long Island, Bahamas, and 2nd is Buck Island, our National Park, here in St Croix.

Also included are Crystal River in Florida; Rockhouse resort of Negril, Jamaica; Pigeon Cay, Honduras; Stingray City, Grand Cayman, which the magazine says “may be the most popular snorkel site in the world,” Hol Chan Marine Reserve in Belize; Bimini Islands, the Bahamas; Lover’s Cove, Catalina Island, Calif.; and Papalaua Wayside Park, Maui, Hawaii.

If you are a beginner, be sure and visit a dive shop for gear, get a neoprene mask strap (it adjusts more easily than silicone), use defogging spray on the mask, snorkel with a buddy, rinse your gear when you get out of the water, and consider taking a lesson. Tanya Burnett-Palmer of Coastal Living, advises “If you’re still honing your snorkeling skills, seek out the operators sanctioned by the park; they’re quick with instruction and help. Keep an eye out for: the three species of sea turtles that call the park a nesting area.”

Visit St Croix Beaches for information and tips.

St Croix has several great dive shops – just ask any Coldwell Banker agent for a recommendation (remember, this is a small friendly island).