Hawaii is one of the most remote places on the globe.  Surrounded by thousands of miles of Pacific Ocean – it is not a surprise that Maui offers some of the best snorkeling in the world.  There are numerous snorkeling locations for visitors to explore.  We wanted to narrow down and discuss our top 10 favorite snorkeling destinations near Maui.

#1 Lana’i Island

Lanai Coastline

There are numerous great, uncrowded spots to snorkel along the coast of Lana’i Island. You need to either take a ferry to Lanai, or take a snorkel boat to the island. It’s best known for scuba diving, but there snorkeling is unique for many reasons. Reports seeing hundreds of dolphins while snorkeling on a very regular basis are common. There’s a large community of spinner dolphins that inhabit the shores of Lana’i.

 

#2 Black Rock

Black Rock Maui

Black Rock is the large rock hill at the north end of Ka’anapali Beach. This is a great spot because of the easy access and protection that the rocky cliffs often give from northerly swell activity. Kaanapali beach has many high-end resorts along the beach, so walking to Black Rock is easy from here. Otherwise, you can drive along the Honoapi’ilani Highway (30) and turn on Kaanapali Parkway or Kekae Dr towards the ocean. When snorkeling, make sure to stay clear of cliff divers. Also, each night, a Hawaiian torch lighting ceremony occurs where tiki torches are lit along the coastline and all the way up to the top of Black Rock. It ends with the torch lighters jumping into the ocean. A lot of fun to watch.

 

#3 La Perouse

La Perouse Bay

One of the furthest southern spots you can visit on the island of Maui, La Perouse’s volcanic landscape is something from another world. As you drive south on Makena Road, you’ll pass the last houses then drive for miles through a very-rugged lava field. When you get to the end of the road, you’ll find a dirt parking lot with a rocky bay. This bay has some amazing ocean life, and it’s known to be the site where a pod of spinner dolphins likes to spend time. If you see the dolphins, give them space and keep your distance. Do everything you can to not affect their normal swimming route. Also, take care when entering and exiting the ocean here. The rocks are sharp, and during the summer there might be south swells making the water rougher than normal.

 

#4 Honolua Bay

Honolua Bay Maui

In contrast to La Perouse Bay, Honolua Bay is one of the most northern bays on the island. This large bay is pretty well protected from wind and even when there’s swell, it can be calm on the inside (though it’s recommended to not snorkel when there are waves.) Driving north on the Honoapi’ilani Highway (31), you’ll wrap down and around a very lush area of rainforest, which is the apex of the bay. With adequate permission, you can walk through the forest to the shoreline. Some of the best snorkeling is further up the coastline on the right and left. You’ll often see boats in here with snorkelers, a much easier way to get directly to the best snorkel areas at Honolua Bay.

 

#5 Coral Gardens

Coral Gardens Maui

Coral Gardens is the name given to the area along the cliffs of the Pali. The Pali is the area along the coastline from Ukumehame and Papalaua to Maalaea. There are many great spots to snorkel here, but they’re often impossible to access by car or foot. The cliffs are incredibly steep and unstable, which is great for keeping wind and crowds down but not so good for accessing. This is why you’ll sometimes see snorkel boats here when the wind is up at Molokini Crater. You’ll also find that some snorkel charters refer to these areas as Turtle Town. They may be right. See #8 on what we think of Turtle Town.

 

#6 Ahihi Bay

Ahili Bay Makena

Just past the last entrances of Big Beach (Makena Beach) is a little cove called Ahihi Bay. It’s the last little Bay before the last houses (Sugarman’s Estate) when driving south. If you keep driving, you’ll see lava fields and you’ll know you’ve gone too far. There’s just a few spots for parking, and it often has at least a few people there. When you enter the water, make sure you do so only at the northern end where there’s a little bit of sand. You’ll feel a concrete slab under the water at the very entrance. Any other area of access is forbidden and dangerous for you and the reef. Ahihi Bay is part of the protected Ahihi Hinau Natural Area Reserve, which protects the ocean life from fishing. This being said, there’s a lot of fish and vibrant coral reef here.

 

#7 Kapalua & Napili Bays

Kapalua Bay Maui

Kapalua Bay has a public parking lot off of the Lower Honoapi’ilani Highway. It’s often crowded, but the snorkeling in the bay is great. Just south of Kapalua Bay is the Napili area, which has all kinds of nooks and crannies to explore. Parking isn’t all that easy to find, but there is a little bit of parking near Napili Bay. Both sides of the bay have great snorkeling and lots of turtles. Occasionally, you’ll see a monk seal on the beach (keep your distance.) If you’re adventurous, you can snorkel south to Honokeana Bay, which has similar snorkeling. It’s a fun spot to snorkel, but access is very dangerous due to the rocky/cliff entry. It’s also problematic when there’s any swell since this is where the surf spot “Hole in the Head” is. Yes, that’s the name of the spot. And yes, we can attest to the accuracy of the name from experience. Not fun. Napili Bay and Kapalua Bay offer far better protection from surf.

 

#8 “Turtle Town”

Turtle Town Near Makena

The infamous and controversial Turtle Town’s location is widely contested. After having heard dozens of captains claiming 20-30 different spots as the official Turtle Town, we can only come to the conclusion that Turtle Town is where ever a lot of turtles have been seen recently. It’s very difficult to know where Turtle Town is right now, unless you are a captain that’s been searching for them in the last few days. The most widely agreed upon spot is in front of the Makena Beach & Golf Resort. We agree that you can find turtles there, but to be honest, we see turtles almost every time we get in the water anywhere around Maui. The 2nd reef at Ulua/Mokapu has a Hawaiian sea turtle cleaning station, so that’s a viable spot to see them as well.

 

#9 Ulua/Mokapu

Ulua/Makapu Beach

Often used as the training ground for new scuba divers by the scuba schools, we find this area is great for seeing ocean life along the reefs with an easy beach entry. The next beaches north of Wailea beach and south of Keawakapu beach are 2 connected beaches: Ulua Beach and Mokapu Beach. A rocky reef formation separates the 2 beaches. Along this reef can be found all kinds of coral and ocean life. If you’re adventurous and have the ability to snorkel at depths, about 30 feet down you’ll find a turtle cleaning station along the second reef. When water clarity is high, you can see it from the surface.

#10 Molokini Crater

Molokini Island

Snorkeling Molokini Crater is a popularthing to do due to the high-visibility of the protected inner waters and also for the abundance of ocean life due to it being deemed a Marine Life Conservation District. Having one of the best wall dives, the backside of the crater is also a world famous scuba diving spot. This volcanic atoll is only a few miles from the south coast of Maui, making for a quick and fun trip by boat from Ma’alaea Harbor. 

Caution: When in the ocean anywhere in Maui County, there are many dangers you should be aware of. We are not liable for any loss or damage that many occur when entering the ocean. Our suggestions come with many red flags! Be careful of waves, sharp coral reef, sharp rocks, dangerous ocean life, vessels, other people, your own ability, aliens, Loch Ness Monsters, and any and all things that could be dangerous.

Check out this source for more info and pictures

 

While you’re away from your hometown

Let home be where the anchor’s down

Let home be where the trades blow, cruising out on the deep blue sea

Trade in all of your shoes for bare feet

As steadily the shoreline ocean waves goodbye

For new found destinations – you’re free

Like a patch let your hair dip down over one eye

And sing a song within your heart – A pirate’s life for me

The seascapes take your breath away

Out where honu and dolphins play

Go anywhere your heart goes, jumping out in the deep blue sea

You’ve traded in your bare feet for fins – you’re free

You feel your new found freedom within reach

And sing the song that lingers on – A pirate’s life for me!

~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~.  ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~. ~

Join us aboard, snorkel magnificent coral reefs and be pirates for a day! Sea Monkey Private Charters – Where we are all kids at heart and age matters not. Leave your cares behind, imagination and a sense of adventure are all you need!

Let us take you to a place where love is in the trade winds, and Maui has more up it’s Aloha shirted sleeve than shimmering moon lit waters and fiery sunsets. Romance is all around for lovers seeking the ultimate tropical paradise honeymoon. Drumbeats of the Hawaiian luau, hula, and sacred chants – salty seascapes and cool waterfall pools to dip into – hikes in the whispering bamboo forest – a boat that’s all your own for the day, to whisk you away like the tides that make their own rules.

There is a mystery about the Hawaiian islands and culture that lingers long after in the hearts of those that are touched by the Spirit of Aloha. Let us take you there – join us aboard Sea Monkey Private Charters and let us bring the romance of the islands. Play with us and treasure hunt native marine life as you snorkel hand in hand in turquoise waters, exploring coral reefs. Sip champagne as the sun dips over the horizon and kiss in the moonlight.

Experience Aloha. Experience love and romance. Experience the magic of Maui. Experience luxury aboard Sea Monkey Private Charters… let us take you there.


Humpback Whales on Sea Monkey Private Charters

Humpback Whale Watching Tour in Maui, HI with Sea Monkey Maui Private Charters

Check out this photo of Sea Monkey and this beautiful humpback taken by our friends on raft boat nearby!

Sea Monkey Private Charters is excited to share the dates and location for Whale Tales 2017! Join the fun February 24 – 27, 2017 at the Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua.

Whale Tales 2017 is featuring a multi-day program with presentations offered daily by world-class presenters from around the globe. Benefit whale watches and other ocean activities will be held throughout the weekend, giving all guests the chance to get out on the water and learn firsthand from the presenters.

Whale Tales also offers an Art and Education Expo, showcasing a variety of Maui artists, merchandise and non-profits. Together the presenters, exhibitors, whale watching boats, beneficiaries, sponsors, and guests are committed to creating a world more knowledgeable about whales.

As you mark your calendar and plan for an exciting weekend in February, consider Sea Monkey Private Charters for whale watching, snorkeling and marine life discovery in a way that only private charter’s can lend. Our naturalists aboard are ready to answer your questions and enrich your mind as you experience Humpback Whales in the majestic Hawaiian waters.

Check out Whale Tales Official Website for more info on the event

Romance Your Sweetheart Aboard Sea Monkey Private Charters!

Looking for a perfect Valentine’s Day gift idea for that special someone? Surprise them with a Romantic Sunset Cruise on the beautiful Hawaiian waters. Now is the perfect time for whale watching – if you can take your eyes off of your Valentine! There is nothing quite like the moon rising over the West Maui Mountains as the sun sets over the neighboring island of Lana’i; all the while reclining on the bow of our beautiful SeaRay yacht with the one you love.

Call today and reserve – make the most romantic Valentine’s Day gift idea a reality – make memories that last a lifetime!

We are so proud to have Sharon Stone joining us for our 4-Hour Exclusive Snorkel Trip on January 28th, 2017!  She and her friend spent their afternoon cruising aboard Sea Monkey and soaking up some Maui Sunshine!  Check out these photos that Sharon Stone and her friend shared with us!

Sharon Stone & Sea Monkey Private Charters Crew

Sharon Stone Enjoying Afternoon Aboard Sea Monkey Private Charters

Aerial photo of the island of Lanai in Hawaii

Lanai is an island of intriguing contrasts. Hike the lunar landscape of Keahiakawelo (Garden of the Gods) or picnic overlooking Puu Pehe (Sweetheart Rock), named for a maiden Puu and her handsome warrior. Two Four Season Resorts pamper you—one along the seaside, the other in the misty mountains—while Hotel Lanai in Lanai City welcomes you with old plantation charm. Whether you’re hiking among native Ohia Lehua trees on the Munro Trail or making your way to the 18th hole, Lanai is easily Hawaii’s “Most Enticing Island.”

You won’t find a single traffic light here and that’s exactly how the people of Lanai like it. Only nine miles from Maui yet a world away, Lanai can feel like two places. The first is found in luxurious resorts  where visitors can indulge in world-class amenities and championship-level golf at the Manele Golf Course and Koele Golf Course. The other is found bouncing along the island’s rugged back-roads in a 4-wheel drive exploring off the beaten path treasures like Keahiakawelo (Garden of the Gods) and Polihua Beach. In fact, only 30 miles of Lanai’s roads are paved.

The smallest inhabited island in Hawaii, Lanai offers big enticements to its visitors. From the stunning views atop the pine-lined Munro Trail to watching the acrobatic spinner dolphins from romantic Hulopoe Bay, Lanai is a special place where you’re sure to find serenity, adventure and intimacy. If you want to get away from it all, get away to Lanai.

Source: Lahai’s Official Travel Site

There were so many whales to see yesterday.  It felt like the ocean was a mine field filled with Humpbacks.  Whales were very curious about us and some came to to check us out very close.  Many whales were very playful and we got to see a few whales breaching pretty close as well!  Check out this video we made yesterday aboard Sea Monkey!