The Soufriere-Scotts Head Marine Reserve was ratified in 1998 to protect and preserve the spectacular underwater features of the Soufriere crater.
The bay is an extinct volcanic crater whose walls drop to an uncharted depth within a lava chute. The majority of the dives are on the submerged remains of this crater: vertical walls in some cases with no ledge separating surface from the depths below, submerged pinnacles rise form the depths close to and just offshore providing another type of dive habitat, and in other areas gently sloping shelves extend from shore to the depths of the middle of the bay. At one particular site pockets of air are warmed within the rock by the latent volcanic activity of the island and as it expands are squeezed out through cracks, giving the effect of diving, swimming, or snorkeling through a glass of champagne.
Due to the nature of the reef, the SSMR is home to many rare and unusual creatures which are found in relative abundance here. This makes the area a delight for those who have just discovered it, and brings back those who have already found this place. Professional and amateur underwater photographers, and the discerning diver frequently return time and time again.
You don't have to be a diver to enjoy the marine reserve - dolphins are quite often seen playing in the bay, especially around sunset.