Exploring Inlet Beach’s Cobia Reef

Here’s all you need to know about visiting the artificial reef – on your own or as part of a tour.

Artificial snorkel reef Inlet Beach 30A Florida

We couldn’t resist sharing this gorgeous photo of Cobia Reef, the thriving artificial reef located just off the coast of our ultimate beach house’s Inlet Beach location.

We’re proud of what the South Walton Artificial Reef Association has accomplished by installing this and other artificial reefs throughout 30A Florida. Since its installation in the summer of 2017, the Cobia Reef has become home to a cornucopia of marine creatures. You’ll find marine life of all kinds: fish, invertebrates, reptiles and even marine mammals.

An octopus? Not out of the question. Sea turtles, rays and reef sharks? Oh my! Snappers, groupers, flounders and tangs frequent Gulf reefs like ours. You may even catch glimpses of dolphins leaping, flipping and frolicking in our beautiful Gulf.

All in all, you’re going to encounter 94 individual EcoSystems reefs, cleverly and carefully shaped to look like the locally popular cobia fish.

Just a Short Paddle Away

The Cobia Reef is one of many of the things we love about our location. Directly accessible from Inlet Beach – a mere 323 yards off the coast – the reef is about as close to the Latitudes and Attitudes beach house as possible.

For safety – not to mention, to keep your energy up – the South Walton Artificial Reef Association recommends taking a paddleboard or kayak out to the artificial reefs or, if swimming, having a flotation device handy.

You’ll also find public restrooms and parking available near the reef sites, although as a guest at Latitudes and Attitudes, you’ll be close enough to your home-away-from-home to skip the hassle of driving and parking. This proximity is ideal because it offers you flexibility. Instead of locking yourself into a guided tour (and paying extra for it), you can choose to visit the reef on your own schedule, enjoy the unique snorkeling opportunity at your own pace and come back to the beach house when you’re ready – not on someone else’s timeline.

Guided Tours of Cobia Reef

If you’re not an expert snorkeler and you don’t want to miss anything, you can absolutely opt for a guided tour of the Cobia Reef. Snorkel-30A‘s popular tours take a small group out for two hours of guided reef exploration (and provide all of the snorkel gear you may need) and welcome children as young as eight.

There are plenty of benefits of a guided tour, particularly for visitors who are new to, or nervous about, snorkeling. Having knowledgeable snorkel guides to help you learn to use the gear and troubleshoot any problems makes for a safe, hassle-free first snorkeling experience. Guides make tours more educational and informative by having the knowledge to identify marine creatures, offer fun and interesting facts on the marine life and the reef ecosystem and answer your questions.

Whether you choose to explore the reef independently or go on a guided excursion, you’re sure to find this can’t-miss attraction worth a look.

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