This Coral Reef Off The Texas Coast Has Clear Waters & So Much Wildlife To Explore

It's a magical sea world below the surface. 🐟

A person scuba diving at Flower Garden Banks. Right: The coral reef at Flower Garden Banks.

A person scuba diving at Flower Garden Banks. Right: The coral reef at Flower Garden Banks.

Clear water in Texas does exist and along 100 miles off the coast of Galveston lies a natural salt dome turned into a vast coral reef.

There are plenty of unique species that lie beneath the surface, and it's a gorgeous sight to see.

The Flower Garden Banks National Marine Sanctuary consists of three extraordinary banks that are home to this sea life and vibrant coral reefs that are full of life and color.

You can take a dive in either the East Flower Garden Bank, West Flower Garden Bank, or Stetson Bank via a commercial dive or fishing charter that will boat you out to the sanctuary, and you can explore the impressive beauty yourself.

The banks are protected by the NOAA's National Marine Sanctuaries. You can witness intricate coral structures in the clear blues surrounded by an abundance of wildlife and old oil platforms.

There are also stunning Silk sharks, adorable turtles on the East Bank and giant Manta Rays that sometimes curiously approach divers.

Of course, the coral is home to a ton of smaller colorful fish. You'll spot bluehead and yellowhead wrasses, damselfish, pufferfish, eels, crab, and shrimp lurking around, too.

There's so much to discover when you dive down below. You can plan your visit ahead of time by familiarizing yourself with reef etiquette and learning more about the sanctuary rules.

Before you get going, check our Responsible Travel Guide so you can be informed, be safe, be smart, and most of all, be respectful on your adventure.

This article has been updated since it was originally published on May 5, 2020.

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