Molasses Reef in Key Largo, FL is one of our premiere dive sites. You’ll know it well for it the incredible variety of marine life you could see. From sharks to turtles to rays, nearly anything can be encountered here.


So how did Molasses Reef get its name? Local legend suggests that Molasses is named for a barge that grounded here many years ago carrying a cargo of molasses barrels. Then as the tide came in and out, and storms stirred things up it was said to begin to smell of molasses.

Diving and Snorkeling it

A favorite among divers and snorkelers visiting Key Largo, Florida.  All alongside it there are many remains of ships that wrecked against this dangerous coral barrier reef.  This reef is located 6 miles off the coast line of Key Largo. Expect to see French grunts, blue-striped grunts, white grunts, trumpetfish, gray angelfish, French angelfish, queen angelfish, yellow tail snapper, chubs, tangs, scrawled filefish, trunkfish, scrawled cowfish, sergeant major, yellowtail damselfish, butterflyfish, Atlantic spadefish, porkfish, bar jack, yellow goatfish, porcupinefish, blue chromis, grouper, great barracuda, every type of parrotfish, and so many more we can’t even name them all! Everyone describes their time at Molasses Reef as like being in an aquarium.

Molasses is one of our reefs that resides close to the Gulf Stream. What does this mean to you? Well, it means that from that offshore current we receive beautiful clear water that comes through the area. This often means Molasses has great visibility. Although sometimes it means we get current on the site as well. Most days it’s manageable and other days it makes the reef perfect for drift diving. Also because of the nearby Gulf Stream, we can receive migrations of large pelagic species. You can occasionally spot hammerhead sharks in the area, and people swear they’ve seen the rare whale shark as well! When you dive it you can do many different depth ranges, as it go from 15 ft – 50 ft and even has a deep side drop off if you know where to look!


  molassessnorkeling key largo schooling fish


Dive Site Spotlight: Molasses Reef