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Lauderdale-by-the Sea

a group of fish in the water

Lauderdale Diving


In the town of Lauderdale-by-the Sea, you will find a sleepy little beach town sandwiched in the middle of a large metro-area. Here you will also find world class diving just a few kicks from shore!  The presence of lively corals, an abundance of marine life and ease of access have led to this site being named Florida’s Beach Diving Capital!  The reef consists of natural ledges, hard and soft corals, coral heads, Swiss-cheese bottom and much more.Lauderdale-by-the-Sea (LBTS) is located along Commercial Blvd and Hwy A1A, near the Anglins Pier in Broward County Florida. The area consists of 3 sets of reef broad reef lines that can be viewed from the map to the left.

Though the beach entrances at Datura and Hibiscus Streets are popular entrance points, Divers can enter the water anywhere in the town of Lauderdale-by-the-Sea, swim out 100 yards and find themselves surrounded by coral reef and gorgeous marine life.


Located only a few hundred feet from shore, the reefs off Lauderdale by the Sea features an average depth of 10-15 feet and a max depth of 25 feet. On a calm day, Lauderdale by the Sea is an excellent spot for divers of all experience levels. The reefs here run North and South and consist of broad ledges filled with hard and soft corals.

Just offshore of the Datura entrance, divers can find the “Shipwreck Trail” by swimming out just past the buoys (that mark the swimming areas), then drop down and continue east. The Shipwreck trail is home to the USS Copenhagen, a natural shipwreck that fell in the early 1800’


Visibility fluctuates based on rain, wind, waves, tide and other factors but is generally very good. Best time is high tide, to check tides click here.

Cleaning up trash and debris underneath the Anglins Pier with the FAU Freediving Club

Openness & Elements

Lauderdale by the Sea consists of open ocean, however, be sure to avoid the pier area as fishing lines are present.

There is usually minimal current at LBTS, but the site is subject to increased wind/waves (Summertime is usually the calmest). Jellyfish, Sea lice, and other stinging nettles may be present as well. Sargasso (seaweed) can be thick in early summer.


Marine Life

Lauderdale-by-the-Sea has been rated one of the top shore dive sites in the world and for good reason! These vibrant reefs are teeming with colorful marine life from tropical fish to spiny lobsters, large moray eels and much more! An added bonus? Keep your eyes peeled for gorgeous shells that frequently deposit in the reef and along the water’s edge! If you do take shells, check carefully to see that there is not a marine organism living inside of it!

Shell pile at Lauderdale-by-the-Sea

Accessibility, Parking, & Traffic

Parking tends to fill up quickly on weekends, so be sure to arrive early. Flat sandy beaches offer ease of entry when getting in the water. See map below for parking, access points, and reef area.

Must pay to park, Pricing fluctuates but is generally more expensive on weekends. Click for more info.

LBTS is located in a densely populated area of South Florida. Many residents and tourists patronize this beach (mostly for reasons other than diving). While the reefs here are very close to shore, there is still the presence of boat, jet ski, and other watercraft traffic, be sure to bring a flag! Heaviest traffic occurs during weekends.


LBTS is a world renowned shore dive spot that you MUST visit! The site is budget friendly, as you don’t need a boat to to access, and the shallow profile of the reefs make this a great dive for all skill levels! LBTS is great for SCUBA, Freedivers and Snorkelers alike! The area around Commercial Blvd and A1A is a active area with vibrant restaurants and shops.

We strongly advise that before diving any location, you check for the most recent updates on potential hazards, security, water quality, and closures. If you do plan to visit, respect the environment.

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