Snorkelling, Diving and Water Sports on Lord Howe Island


Snorkelling on Lord Howe Island

Snorkelling in the azure waters of Lord Howe Island is truly something special, revealing pristine coral reefs, vibrant tropical fish and playful turtles. Explore Lagoon Beach, Neds Beach, Old Settlement Beach, Erscott’s Hole and Blinky Beach and see up to 90 varieties of colourful coral and more than 500 species of fish.

  • Kayaking, Lord Howe Island
  • Stand up paddleboarding, Lord Howe Island

Snorkelling, diving and watersports

Lord Howe Island is a haven for watersports enthusiasts. One of the most popular activities on the island is snorkelling, where you can see schools of fish, turtles and stingrays.

Lagoon Beach, Neds Beach, Old Settlement Beach, Erscott’s Hole and Blinky Beach are all idyllic snorkelling locations.

You can also explore the wreck of the Favourite ship in North Bay on an Islander Cruise, or book a glass-bottom boat and snorkelling tour with Marine Adventurers or Environmental Tours.

Scuba diving, Lord Howe Island

Lord Howe Island is home to more than 10 surf breaks, offering plenty of choice for surfers, swimmers and beachcombers.

Another fun activity to try out is kite surfing, using a kite-like sail and the power of the wind to pull you across the water on a surfboard. Windsurfing is best done at Lagoon Beach at Neds Beach, and the calm shallows of North Bay and Old Settlement Beach offer excellent kayaking and stand-up paddleboarding. Equipment hire is available across the island.

Lord Howe Island Marine Park is home to a variety of tropical, subtropical and temperate marine life found nowhere else on Earth, making it one of the world’s top diving sites.

Explore the basalt caves and reefs below the world's tallest sea-stack, Ball’s Pyramid, which is home to huge schools of violet sweep, rainbow runners, marlin, dolphins, turtles and rare species such as Spanish dancers, double-headed wrasse and galapagos whalers.

Book a dive with Howea Divers or PRO DIVE Lord Howe Island and discover the reefs and marine life of the famed Admiralty Islands.

  • Hand feeding Fish on Lord Howe Island NSW

    Hand-feed the fish at Neds Beach

    Hand-feed eager mullet, garfish and kingfish for a unique Lord Howe Island experience at Neds Beach Sanctuary Zone. Here you can see an amazing diversity of marine life and coral close to shore. You can also paddle or snorkel in the clear waters of the beach and get up close with fish.

  • Stand-up paddleboarding on Lord Howe Island

    Stand-up paddleboarding

    Hire a board at Neds Beach or from the PRO DIVE Hire Centre at Lagoon Beach and try your hand at stand-up paddleboarding. Glide through the calm waters of the bay, where you can see turtles, stingrays, schools of fish and vibrant coral. It’s great fun and an excellent way to explore the island’s waters.

  • Snorkelling, Lord Howe Island

    Snorkelling and diving

    Lord Howe Island is home to an abundance of beautiful marine life, and snorkelling is one of the best ways to see it up close. Spectacular diving and snorkeling sites include Neds Beach, Erscott's Hole, the Admiralty Islands and Ball's Pyramid. Swim amongst up to 500 species of marine life including fish, turtles and stingrays.

Swimming safety information

Swimming safety information

NSW has a wide range of wonderful swimming options including beaches, ocean pools, harbourside pools, lakes, rivers, and swimming holes at the bottom of waterfalls. However to ensure maximum safety and enjoyment, swimmers should follow this general advice:

Look for patrolled beaches (this is where lifesavers are on duty; you will see red and yellow flags that indicate this). You should always swim between the red and yellow flags as they mark the safest place to swim.

Never swim alone at night, or under the influence of alcohol, or directly after a meal.

Always check water depth before diving in, as rocks or trees could be submerged, and never run and dive into the water from the beach.

Check for signs regarding advice on water conditions at your chosen swimming spot and at any natural swimming hole. Always proceed with caution as surfaces could be slippery and water conditions may not be immediately apparent; particularly if the area has recently experienced heavy rain or flooding.

Pay attention to the advice of the lifesavers and safety signs. Visit SharkSmart to understand any potential risks in the area you are swimming. 

Popular Accommodation Options on Lord Howe Island

Lord Howe Island - Just Paradise 2016
  1. Admiralty Islands

    Just 15 minutes by boat from Lord Howe rests an intriguing group of volcanic formations, dubbed the Admiralty Islands. Large pinnacles, coral reefs, larger schools of fish and diving depths of 15-40 metres...

  2. Balls Pyramid

    23 kilometres southeast of the island, the world's tallest sea stack and the site of some of Australia's most remarkable diving can be found - the 551 metre tall Balls Pyramid. Exploring the caves and waters...

  3. Erscott's Hole

    Home to 500 fish species and 90 species of coral, Lord Howe's snorkelling is second to none.A luxuriant garden of staghorn coral dominates the iconic snorkelling destination that is Erscott's Hole, a natural...

  4. Islander Cruises

    Join Islander Cruises on one of their specialised tours to some of Lord Howe Island's more remote and pristine locations.Bushwalking tours, beach picnics, barbecue tours and Sunset Cruises are...

  5. Lord Howe Island Marine Park

    Lord Howe Island Marine Park is internationally significant, with the world's southernmost coral reef and the only fringing coral reef lagoon in NSW. The convergence of warm and cool waters results in a unique mix of...

  6. MV Lulawai

    Join the crew of the 'MV Lulawai', purpose built on the island for the late Roy Wilson in 1969. This beautiful, traditional vessel was purposely designed and built for the island's waters and to provide a service for...

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