we went to cheesburger reef. It's very close to the ship ( you could probably jump right off the ship and swim to it) very good snorkleing there. there was also a ship wreck very close to it and that was very neat
This is a great website for cozumel beaches, www.cozumelinsider.com. That will help you decide on where to go. All are easy to get to by cab, decide on price before getting into cab tho. That's just the way they do things on the islands. Have fun, planning to go to playa palancar when we stop off there in Aug.. The beaches are very different from the states. Alot of them are man made. They bring in the sand to make a beach shore. They are a great way to relax and enjoy the beautiful water. Also if you like fun party restaurants. Go to Carlos 'n' Charles. It's a blast. Have Fun.
I have snorkeled close to the ship dock as did Whitney55. When you get off the ship and walk through the vendors walk out to the road and take a left. Just a few yards away is a hotel. Walk through their lobby and onto the sand in the back. Put your towel down and enjoy! Very good snorkeling there. There is even a shower to rinse off yourself and your equipment.
Those of you talking about snorkeling close to the dock are talking about La Cieba Hotel. You can see it from the ship - If I remember right, its pink. There is a sunken plane a bit offshore and the snorkeling is pretty good. I think that cruise passengers sometimes get charged to use the facilities - depending on the mood of the day.
Personally, I'd take a cab to Chankanaab - if I remember right - its about a 10 dollar cab ride - and the park admission is 10 dollars US as well. Theres plenty of palapas and lounge chairs - the botanical gardens is beautiful - and the snorkeling was good - particularly for beginners - calm water - lots of things to see without having to go out too far..