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Hawaii Snorkeling/Scuba Diving
Some of the best diving and snorkeling in the world happens off the coasts of this archipelago. Whether you have spent or are taking the plunge for the first time there are a lot of things to know about the where, when and how of enjoying your time under the sea.
The most popular spots for snorkeling and diving are Hanauma Bay, east of Honolulu, and Pokai Bay Beach Park near Waianae on the Leeward coast.
Aquanatics Marine Services: offering fantastic scuba dives and snorkel adventures in small groups, insuring you great service and attention. Explore a WWII Corsair fighter plane, sunken barge wrecks, sea caves, shallow reef sites and Hanauman Bay. 808 395-0725.
Dive Hawaii - large, open-dive platform boat with an extra-wide swim step for easy ocean entry. 808 223-4444.
Paradise Divers of Hawaii, poolside at Waikiki Sand Villa Hotel, 2375 Ala Wai Blvd. 808 921-3230.
Dan’s Dive Shop, 660 Ala Moana Blvd. Explore Waikiki’s 100’ deep hole and see the remains of the Navy’s "Yard Oiler #257." 808 536-6181.
Waikiki Diving Center - 424 Nahua Street, near the International Market Place. Rent snorkeling and scuba gear. Take diving lessons with some of the best master instructors in the world. 808 922-2121.
Hana Tours, with round trip pick-up from Waikiki, offers a complete adventure package sharing with you the underwater magic of Hanauma Bay. $15.00 including snorkeling equipment. 808 926-0333.
Snorkel Bob’s Oahu, 700 Kapahulu Avenue on the way to Hanauma Bay. 8 - 5 daily 808 735-7944.
Paradise Snorkel Adventures, Continental Surf Hotel, 2426 Kuhio and Uluniu Streets. 808 923-7766.
Hawaiian Fun Tours. Tours daily 8:30 a.m. - 1 p.m., 10:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m., and 1 - 5 p.m. Snorkel Hanauma Bay. 808 554-2616.
Dream Cruises 808 592-5200.
Snuba - combination snorkeling and scuba diving. Professional guided tours of Hanauma Bay and KoOlina Resort. 808 396-6163.
Clarks’s Divemaster Tours, snorkel or dive to shipwrecks, turtles, tropical fish and spotted eagle rays. 808 923-5595. Toll-free 888-728-2250.
Paradise Cruise’s Waikiki Snorkel & BBQ: three-hour cruise away from crowded beaches in the crystal-clear waters just off Waikiki. Snorkel equipment, instructions, slide, rafts, view boards, plus a grilled-on-board, all-you-can-eat BBQ lunch provided. 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. daily. 808 983-STAR.
For experienced divers, cave and lava tube diving are great adventures. There are great reefs off the western shore of the island, and it’s usually easiest to just ask someone at one of the many dive shops and ocean activity centers where the nearest spot can be found.
Snorkeling gear can be rented for as little as $15 - a bargain when you consider the sights you’ll see underwater. Five of the best spots on Maui to snorkel and dive are Honolua Bay, Olowalu, Ahihi-Kinau Bay, Kaanapali’s Black Rock, and Wailea’s Ulua Beach.
For the security of having an experienced diver along, you might want to consider one of the diving charters that sail out of Maalaea Bay and Lahaina. Molokini Crater, a marine preserve, displays an abundance of sea life. This is a very popular morning excursion for both snorkeling and scuba.
Frogman Charters, Inc. (Boss Frog’s Dive Shops): a spacious and luxurious sailing catamaran, takes you to Molokini Crater, the world’s most beautiful and pristine marine sanctuary, for scuba diving or snorkeling. No experience is necessary as highly trained instructors narrate, assist and supervise excursions. A tropical breakfast, deli-style lunch, all beverages, and quality snorkel gear are included. Private charters are very reasonable rates also available. 808 661-3333 or 808 875-4477.
Dive Maui, located in the Lahaina Center, Lahaina, offers daily boat dives, introductory scuba, Molokini dives, beach dives, and even a night dive which provides a once-in-a-lifetime glimpse of the tropical sealife which only comes out after the sun sets. Their internationally renowned diving school offers a PADI, NAUI, and SSI with three and four-day classes for the best prices available. Dives include spectacular views of coral reefs, sea turtles, lava formations, and shipwrecks. 808 667-2080.
Maui Diamond II, departing daily from Maalaea Harbor, leisurely cruise to Molokini Crater (weather permitting). Snorkel or scuba dive with the experts. The maximum passenger load is 20, so there is never any overcrowding and personalized service is the rule. Includes your equipment, continental breakfast and buffet lunch. Also available out of Kihei Boat Launch is a six-passenger dive vessel for a half-day excursion. 808 879-9119.
Pacific Whale Foundation Eco Adventures offers cruises in which all profits support marine conservation. On the Molokini and Turtle Arches Snorkel Picnic led by marine research naturalists, they will guide you on a snorkel tour and share findings of their coral reef study. Travel on the sailing catamaran Manutea as a part of the Lanai Wild Dolphin and Snorkel Adventure. Explore a scenic coast where wild dolphins play. Snorkel pristine reefs, enjoy a barbecue lunch and sail back to Lahaina Harbor. For dinner, experience the beauty of a tropical sunset on the Hawaiian Sunset Barbecue Dinner Cruise with live music nightly. 808 879-8811.
Snorkel Bob’s rents snorkeling gear including RX and corrective lenses, boogie boards, underwater cameras, 24-hour express gear returns, inter-island gear returns and now, Snorkel Bob’s Reality Guide to Hawaii (for all islands). The Reality Guide is the how, when, and where to go. Also available, Snorkel Bob’s Road to Hana Cassette Tape. Open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. In Kihei 808 879-7449, in Napili 808 669-9603, and in Lahaina 808 661-4421 or 808 667-2553.
Ed Robinson’s Diving Adventures: join internationally renowned underwater photographer, Ed Robinson and staff with over twenty years of exploration in Maui and Lanai waters. Premier service. 800 635-1273 or 808 879-3584.
Tropical Divers Maui offers special discounts on available dive tours for contacting them direct. The scuba dive company specializes in intro lessons and reef dives for first timers. Certified divers can enjoy night, scooter, and boat dives to Lanai and Molokini. 808 669-6284.
Maui Dive Shop’s eight retail locations offer snorkeling and diving excursions, water-sport equipment rentals and sales, and diving instructions. Daily snorkeling and diving tours include gear, food and beverages. 808 879-3388 in Kihei or 808 661-5388 in Lahaina.
Blue Dolphin’s spacious and luxurious sailing catamaran takes you to Molokini Crater to scuba dive or snorkel. No experience is necessary as highly trained instructors narrate, assist and supervise excursions. A tropical breakfast deli-style lunch, beverages, and quality snorkel gear are included. Private charters at very reasonable rates are also available. 808 661-3333 or 808 891-2500.
Maui Scuba Dive - Maui Scuba Dive and Lanai Scuba Dive Boat trips for certiifed divers and beginner divers. 20 years of experience leading tours to Lanai and Maui means that our guides will bring the hidden into view for you on the reef. Our website has dive site descriptions, stories, maps, and pictures. If you want to get an idea of what is available to dive on Maui or Lanai visit Extended Horizons Scuba on the web.
Kauai offers world-class snorkeling and diving. Some of the best snorkeling spots are Lydgate Park (east shore), which is great for beginners; Poipu Beach Park; Tunnels Reef on the north shore, which is not advisable during winter months and Salt Pond on the south shore. Snorkel Bob’s, next to Coconut Marketplace in Kapaa and also in Kapaa rents "the bestest gear for the leastest price" including RX lenses and boogie boards. Daily 8 - 5. 808 742-2206 or 808 823-9433. Sea Fun offers a spectacular snorkeling adventure. See Kauai reef life with expert guides. 808 245-6400.
As for scuba diving, Dive Kauai Scuba Center offers certification classes, 976 Kuhio Highway in Kapaa 808 822-0452. Fathom Five Divers, 3450 Poipu Road, in Koloa, hosts half-day and full-day trips as well as their famous night dive to Sheraton Caverns. 808 742-6991. Sea Sport Divers, 2827 Poipu Road, can take you to Kauai’s best spots and offers night dives 808 742-9303 or 800-685-5889.
Beginners can get used to diving at Koloa Landing. General Store, offers everything from colorful lemon butterfly fish to Hammerhead sharks and even a sunken steamship. At Turtle Hill you’ll find many green sea turtles as well as lobster, octopus and eels. At Fishbowl you’ll be overwhelmed by hoards of schooling fish. Sheraton Caves has two very friendly sea turtles, Pepe and LaPue. Almost all the dive spots on the south shore offer lava tubes, caves, interesting rock formations and black coral. More experienced divers may want to venture to Niihau to dive The Great Wall.
Sea Paradise Scuba, Keauhou Bay. "Home of the Guaranteed Dive Experience." Complete dive shop with daily boat trips to premier dive locations. Small groups, guided dives, underwater video and camera rentals. Morning, afternoon, sunset/night and intro dive available. 808 322-2500.
Live/Dive Pacific Inc. Kailua-Kona. Explore pristine Big Island waters from the luxurious "Kona Aggressor II" - Hawaii’s ultimate live-aboard diving adventure. 808 329-8182 or 800-344-5662.
Snorkel Bob’s Kona, Alii Drive next to Huggo’s and the Royal Kona Resort. "The 1 and Only - Snorkel Bob’s got a huge inventory of the bestest gear for the leastest price including RX lenses and boogie boards. Free Inter-Island Gear Returns and 24-hour Express Gear Return too! 8 - 5 every day. 808 329-0770.
Sea Quest Raft & Snorkel Adventure, Keauhou Bay. Explore by raft the remote area between Keauhou Bay and Place of Refuge. View spectacular sea caves, lava tubes, snorkel. Beverages, snacks and snorkel gear are provided. Six people maximum. 808 329 RAFT. Sher and Carolyn loved this one! You can book it as part of your Hawaii-Xpert.com vacation.
Mile 20 is Molokai's most popular snorkeling beach among visitors.
Murphy Beach Park, Rocky Point, and Small Bay at Kumimi Beach, on the drive toward Halawa Valley, where the road to the east ends, offer swimming, snorkeling and surfing possibilities.
Bill Kapuni's Snorkel and Dive Adventure, Kaunakakai, offers an adventure of a lifetime at the last unspoiled barrier reef in Hawaii. Air fill and equipment rental. PADI instructor. 808 553-9867
Molokai Charters, in Kaunakakai, offers two hour, half day, or a full day of sailing aboard the Coast Guard documented vessel, "Satan's Doll." Snorkeling off Lanai; sail with whales. 808 553-5852
Don’t miss breathtaking Cathedrals of Lanai, which has been hailed by avid divers as one of the best dive spots in the world. Hulopoe Bay is part of a Marine Life Conservation District. It is a preferred habitat to Hawaiian spinner dolphins. Located in south Lanai, the bay is under the gaze of the luxurious Manele Bay Hotel. Snorkeling equipment can be rented at the kiosk on the beach. Snorkel sails and scuba diving outings can be booked at the activities desks of The Lodge at Koele or The Manele Bay Hotel.
Spinning Dolphin Charters 808 565-6613 (Captain Menze)
Trilogy Ocean Sports 808 565-2384