Best Snorkel Spots Maui

There is no "Best" Spot

The best spot is really, "Where is the best spot for the day?"

Here in Maui Ocean conditions are always changing. If we have large waves coming from the north, go to the south for calm water and vice versa, you can find this out by checking your local surf report.

 

With that being said, here are some of our favorite Snorkel Spots.

West Maui

Snorkel Spots

South Maui

Snorkel in Maui

Honolua Bay

Honolua Bay Snorkeling | Honolua bay maui
 

Honolua Bay is a Marine Preserve

DURING WINTER CAN HAVE HIGH SURF

 

Located on the lush northwest tip of Maui. If you’re staying on the west side of Maui, it’s only a 5 – 15-minute drive from your hotel. It’s best to snorkel at Honolua Bay in the morning from 7am – 11am when the visibility is the clearest and less crowds

 

Honolua Bay snorkeling can be awesome, it is quite shallow making seeing the corals up close and personal.

 

Honolua Bay Tips

Check the surf report (http://www.surfline.com/surf-report/honolua-bay-maui_10814/)

If it is over 2 feet go somewhere else, as water will be murky.

 

Rocky Beach Entry! 

But is very calm water, If it has rained Honolua can be murky due to river drains into bay.

 

Go by car! The walking path to Honolua bay from the parking area is so magical and beautiful! It is something to not be missed!

Bay can be crowded with Snorkel Boats go by car to avoid them.

Mokuleia Bay

 

Makuleia is a Marine Preserve

DURING WINTER CAN HAVE HIGH SURF

 

Mokuleia is also known as "Slaughter House" Located north of Napili on Hwy 30 (Honoapiilani Hwy) at mile marker 32, you’ll see a chain link fence with roadside parking. This is a bay only accessible by car.

 

Mokuleia Bay Tips

Stay to the right of the bay and work your way up the rocky edge. For the beginners, stick to the first half of the rocky walls. Be careful not get too close because a sudden swell can wash you up on the jagged rocks. For the stronger and more experienced swimmers and snorkelers, work your way up and around the rocky point.

 

Sandy Beach Entry

Very calm water, in the summer months in the winter check surf, Generally this beach is pretty un-crowded.

 

If it is calm enough and your a good swimmer go to the left side of the bay very few people go there.

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Cliff House

Cliff House - Cliff Jump and Snorkel

DURING WINTER CAN HAVE HIGH SURF

 

Cliff House is Located in Kapalua Infront of Montage Hotel, Great for Cliff Jumping and Snorkeling, has ladders getting in/out.

 

Cliff House Tips

Parking there is at the beach access point, Drive past the Montage Hotel, park, get out and walk toward the ocean, follow the dirt trail back towards Kapalua it will lead you to cliff house.

 

Great place to do smaller cliff jumps 10-20 feet here and ladders to get back up/get to snorkel area.

 

Entry by ladders

Very calm water, in the summer months in the winter check surf, Generally this place is pretty un-crowded. 

 

Turtles are sighted here often.

 

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Kapalua Bay

 

Kapalua Bay - Easy Entry Snorkel

 

This horseshoe, or crescent-shaped bay, is a great snorkeling spot in the morning and early afternoon. Located off of the lower road,

 

Kapalua Bay Tips

Parking can fill up quick so park down the road or accross the road by the pineapple grill parking lot

 

Great place to do smaller cliff jumps 10-20 feet here and ladders to get back up/get to snorkel area

 

Entry is very easy

very calm water, Entry is very easy (enter on south side of bay) in the summer months in the winter check surf, beach can become busy, this bay is sheltered from wind and some swell, great for first time snorkelers

 

Snorkel along the north side of the bay for best reef life

 

Napili Bay

Napili Bay - BodyBoard/snorkel

DURING WINTER CAN HAVE HIGH SURF

 

Bring your boogie/bodyboard! the waves that are here roll up the beach and are great for first time bodyboarders and kids! this is our favorite beach! 

 

Turtles are often sited off the north side of the bay - This beach has fresh water showers and two great restaurants to choose from.

 

Great Snorkeling can be found here at Napili Bay during the winter snorkel the north side, during the summer snorkel the south side of the bay.

 

Napili Bay Tips

 

If you drive to Napili Bay, there is a carpark off the highway, but you’ll want to get there early for a spot. Or, take the bus from Whalers Village, the “Napili Islander, Route 30”,

 

Be careful swimming over the reef here it can inches deep in places and if a wave comes it can hurt you. Just swim in the deeper water.

 
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Airport Beach

Airport Beach - showers & BBQ

 

Kahekili Beach Park is also called Airport Beach due to the fact that during the 1960’s and early 1970’s, the location served as West Maui’s only airport. 

 

The best snorkeling is in front of the Westin Ocean Resort Villas north towers. There is a beautiful reef and ample parking at the entrance to the park. Public restrooms, picnic tables, grills and fresh water showers make this snorkel spot a place you can enjoy all day.

 

Airport Beach Tip's

Bring a Beach Chair, Some things to grill and have a picnic! don't forget your snorkel gear!

 

Watch your step on the beach, for the kiawe trees here the have thorns!

 

Easy Sand entry

Walk straight into the ocean and enjoy - Airport Beach Maui is a great place to snorkel.

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Black Rock

Black Rock- Easy Entry & Protected

 

The best snorkeling is out in front of the Sheraton at Black Rock. There is a sandy bottom with great visibility along the rock outcroppings that separate South Ka’anapali beach from North Ka’anapali beach.

 

Black Rock Tip's

There is limited beach access parking in Ka’anapali, but there are a few spots under the Sheraton Hotel parking structure, in between Whalers Village and the Westin Hotel, and between the Ka’anaplai Ali’i and the Marriott. If you don’t feel like hunting for a parking spot, your best bet is to park in the Whalers Village parking. This is paid parking but if you buy some snacks at the ABC Store or choose to have some beverages at one of the restaurants, you can get 4 hour validated parking.

 

Entry is very easy

Very calm water, is protected, but VERY CROWDED.

 

Snorkel All the way around black rock into the center bay there is a secret beach about 8 feet wide there!

 

Olowalu

Olowalu Beach - Mile Marker 14

 

The beach at Mile Marker 14 is super easy to get to. Pull off the highway (Hwy 30) at Mile Marker 14. 

Park right next to the house with the red roof on the ocean side of the road.

(Just past Camp Olowalu)

GPS cords

20.810228, -156.613695

 

Olowalu Tip's

Stop at Leoda's Pie Shop it is really tasty! 

You can snorkel out a good little way from shore and not have much variation in depth great for viewing the coral up close!

 

Entry is very easy

Very calm water, entry is very easy all sand, whales can be seen and heard here in the winter!

GREAT SPOT TO HIDE FROM NORTH SWELLS!

Kamaole 3

Kamaole 3 - snorkel - BBQ Family

 

Beat the trade winds and head to this beach early—the water will be at its clearest and calmest in the morning.

 

Great Snorkeling can be found here at Kam3 during the winter due to being on the south side of the island.

 

Kamaole 3 Tip's

Swimming in Maui’s warm, clear waters is a beautiful experience but don’t forget to check the conditions before you go out.

 

There are indoor bathrooms and outside showers at the beach park. There are lifeguards, BBQs and picnic tables.

 

 Kam III has a large park area, with plenty of shade, BBQs, picnic tables and a children’s playground, which are all popular at weekends and on public holidays.

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Makena Landing

Makena Landing - Underwater cave

 

Makena Landing on the South side is one of the great places to snorkel on Maui. The waves are gentle, and the ocean bottom at entry is made of soft coral sand, so getting in the water is easy. On the right hand side of the bay, the tumbling coral reef extends quite far, and it houses fabulous and varied marine life. As you move around the point, the water depth is consistently thirty to forty feet.

 

Near 5079 Makena Road
Wailea-Makena, HI 96753
GPS Coordinates: 20.656796, -156.442071

 

There is an underwater cave that advanced snorkelers can choose to swim through.

 

Makena Landing Tip's

There is a small parking lot to the right of the beach park. To the left, parallel parking spaces hug the rock wall and go up and over the hill. If you arrive after 9:30 AM, plan for parking to be a challenge.

 

Amenities include an outdoor shower and indoor bathrooms

 

Easy Sand entry

Walk right in, enjoy the water snorkel Makena landing.

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