Snuba is basically scuba diving without a tank on its back; It’s a great way to get introduced to the sport and overcome any initial fears you might have about diving.

Snuba’s official slogan is “Go Beyond Snorkeling”, and it is an appropriate description of the experience that falls into the situation between snorkeling and scuba diving. Like snorkeling and scuba diving, you’re wearing a diving mask. However, instead of a snorkel, you have an adjustment in your mouth, as with scuba. But you don’t carry your own oxygen supply – the tanks are kept on a float and the surface, and the air is pumped through the pipe for your adjustment. No wetsuit is needed, either.

For my money, this is the best alternative for scuba out there. The introductory course takes only 15 minutes, you don’t need to be certified, and have a minimum amount of gear to fuss with. If you’ve never done scuba before, the biggest mental challenge will probably be used to breathe through things.

The first time I did Snuba – in Little Bay, St Maarten, with Blue Bubbles – I had a moment of panic when I lowered my head into the water until I realized I didn’t have to dive and I could spend time space to relax and breathe while I’m still paddling on the surface near the buoy. Then it was great – the first time I got the thrill of diving into the water (don’t forget to turn on the ear to reduce the pressure) like the divers I always envied when I was diving above.

Snuba prices change from Destination but relatively inexpensive in Cozumel – a lot for the experience you get. Anyone ages 8 and can Snuba, and there is also a special program “Snuba Doo” for young children.