What Is The Difference Between Scuba Diving & Snorkeling?

If you have never been scuba diving before, then you may make the exact same mistake that so many others do and assume that scuba diving and snorkeling is actually the same thing. However, this is really not the case! Let’s take a look at what the differences are between these two water based activities.

What Makes These Activities Similar?

First of all, let’s start by thinking about why so many people get scuba diving and snorkeling confused. There are actually a couple of things that make them very similar. For example, both activities are going to require you to wear a mask, fins/ flippers and a snorkel. Also, both scuba divers and snorkelers are going to be spending a large amount of time just under the surface of the water looking down at the hidden world beneath the waves.


How Are Scuba Diving & Snorkeling Different

So, both of these activities are sound quite similar, right? However, aside from the somewhat superficial similarities outlined above they are actually very different. First and foremost, snorkelers and going to stay on the surface of the ocean to view the sealife below while scuba divers will be diving a little deeper thanks to the use of breathing apparatus and they do not need to resurface for air like a skin diver would. Skin divers are somewhere in the middle between scuba and snorkeling! A skin diver does not use breathing apparatus, but will dive deeper than a snorkeler by simply holding their breath and then resurfacing as and when they need to!

Another difference between scuba diving and snorkeling is that scuba diving requires more training and/or instruction whereas pretty much anyone is going to be able to snorkel in shallow waters. However, that does not necessarily mean that scuba diving is much more difficult. Lots of people get put off by all of the equipment that is required, but most of the associated training is more about safety and handling that equipment. When it comes down to it, if you can swim then you can scuba dive!

When you book a tour online with LivingOceanScuba or some other dive tour provider you will get all of the necessary training that you will require. Just let them know that you are a beginner!

Scuba Diving or Snorkeling: Which is Better?

So that brings us down to the million dollar question. Which of the two activities is better, Scuba diving or snorkeling? The truth is that this all comes down to the individuals personal preference. Some people are perfectly happy with the overview of life beneath the waves that snorkeling can offer them. However, others are more interested in exploring a little bit more in depth and these people like the fact the scuba diving can offer them the opportunity to spend more time underwater thanks to the breathing apparatus. Scuba diving certainly allows the participant to get much closer to the fish and other creatures than they wood snorkeling and that is something that really appeals to some people’s sense of curiosity and adventure!


In conclusion, although snorkeling and scuba diving do have some similarities, these are actually two very different activities. Neither is more superior than the other, they just offer participants two different experiences and it is down to you to decide which of those appeals to you more.

Scuba Diving is certainly the more physically demanding of the two and will require at least some level of instruction for you to be able to handle the necessary equipment safely.

Whichever one you choose, one thing is certain – you will love exploring the world that waits just under the surface of the water.