Controversial as it may sound from dive experts, we believe that you can often get as much pleasure from snorkelling as you can from diving. In fact, sometimes snorkelling is the best way to view the underwater world. With this in mind we have been researching the globe for original and exciting snorkelling trips.

Here are some of the best snorkel trips we have found.

Blue Whales in Sri Lanka

From late April to early June, the largest animal to have ever graced the earth, the blue whale, can be found in the waters off Sri Lanka. With the help of expert guides, spotter planes and a little bit of luck, you can get in the water with these giants, measuring up to 100ft. Combine the whales with some exploration on land in this fascinating country and you have the makings of a very special holiday.

Humpback Whales in the Caribbean

Every year from January to March, humpback whales come to Silver Banks in the Dominican Republic to give birth to their young. Snorkelling while a mother and calf swim below you is breathtaking. Whether you charter your own supremely luxurious boat and crew or join a scheduled trip, this is special. And why not add on some diving, rest and relaxation on the Turks and Caicos at the end of the trip to recover?

Leopard Seals in Antarctica

There aren't many trips more exciting than a trip to Antarctica. February and March is the time for encounters with leopard seals and you can both dive and snorkel with these beautiful creatures. They may look menacing with their big teeth but if you are sensible you can safely have a lot of fun with them in the water. Then of course there is the stunning scenery of Antarctica to enjoy.

Whale Sharks Worldwide

There are a few places around the world where you can be virtually guaranteed encounters with the largest fish in the sea, the whale shark. From East Africa and East Asia to the Caribbean and Indian Ocean, if you know where to look (and we do) you can jet off for a snorkelling trip with these gentle ocean giants.

These are just a few of the extraordinary snorkel trips we can now organise with our swiftly growing network of expert guides from around the world. Even the most adventurous of divers will be thrilled by these adventures.

We think these are some of the best snorkel trips around the world. If you have any others let us know in the comments.