Experience the Mackerel Islands from underwater! Located just north of the world heritage listed Ningaloo Reef and the Exmouth Gulf, an ocean playground awaits full of amazing sea life and untouched coral reefs.

Fringing reefs surround the island so you can access straight from the beach, or hire a boat to explore the snorkel trail.

Snorkel the Mackerel Islands, Western Australia

A variety of reef locations surround the Mackerel Islands, including our ‘house’ reefs, which are easily accessible from shore. These sites offer some great snorkelling for those wishing to explore close to the beachfront and are especially fun for kids.

Low tides are common and make for a tranquil, enjoyable snorkel adventure to admire all the beauty and action under the sea, while friends and family can watch from their cabin’s outdoor entertaining area. You can hire masks, snorkels and flippers from our activity centre.

The sites laid out in the Mackerel Islands’ snorkel trail are prime examples of the vast varieties of coral, structures and marine life habitats found in the broader Pilbara coastal area of Australia. They range from the visually breathtaking to the environmentally unique.


  • Snorkel set hire (small selection) available from the island activity centre, or bring your own special snorkel equipment
  • Snorkel directly off the beach
  • Plaka boat hire also available for recreational skipper’s licence holders – discover snorkel sites further out from the islands


Watch a short video clip from Season 5, Episode 7 of Destination WA, Snorkeling the Mackerel Islands.

Snorkel Thevenard Island

Thevenard Island’s sandy cay consists of loose coral sands, covering typically low Pilbara coastal vegetation and surrounded by a protective fringe reef and coral bombies, with other sandstone and coral reef structures nearby.

Snorkel Direction Island

The waters surrounding Direction Island offer a spectacular array of colourful reef fish and beautiful coral formations. The island’s fringing reef is alive and animated with fish, coral, and sea plants.

Boat Access

For the more experienced snorkellers, explore the Mackerel Islands’ snorkel trail by boat. Our plaka boats are available for hire if you hold a recreational skipper’s licence, and provide a great platform for you to investigate pristine coral sites within a short distance from the main boat mooring area.