Some people like to scuba dive deep under the surface of the water, while others are perfectly content to float on its surface and snorkel. If you fall into the latter group then the wonderful world of Erscott’s Hole will blow your mind.

Among the many natural attractions, this spot is easily the snorkelling highlight of Lord Howe Island. Erscott’s Hole is home to over 500 species of fish and more than 90 species of coral.

The reef system here is incredibly healthy and diverse – a tapestry of colour and activity that easily ranks among the most impressive reef sites in Australia.

snorkelling at Erscott’s Hole

The site is huge and completely protected as an intertidal groyne. A garden of staghorn coral dominates the scene, complemented by dozens of other soft and hard coral species. The shallow nature of the lagoon means almost anyone can enjoy the underwater spectacle.

Some of the amazing creatures regularly spotted here include the blue fish, which can change the colour of its body like a chameleon from dark green to blue in just seconds. It’s truly a miracle of nature.

The double header wrasse is another of the fascinating fish that are spotted by divers almost every day here.

Even if you don’t feel like getting in the water and snorkelling, there are glass-bottom boats that run tours every day.

These boats have helped condition the local fish to the presence of humans and their vessels, which has resulted in some of the tamest, friendliest fish you are likely to ever encounter.

There are two dive outfitters on Lord Howe Island, with Erscott’s Hole on their agendas. They run frequent snorkelling trips to this iconic spot, providing all the gear and guidance needed.

This lagoon is also easy to reach on your own if you prefer to wade into the sea from the tiny strip of beach. Either way, Erscott’s Hole is one underwater site not to be missed.

Map of Erscott's Hole

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