With beautiful beaches across its many shores, and crystal blue waters surrounding every corner, Snorkeling and Hawaii are pretty much like Peanut Butter & Jelly. They just go together so well!
And with warm weather virtually all year round, there isn’t a bad time or anything stopping you to get out there and try it for yourself.
Well, not quite ‘nothing’ stopping you.
With so many snorkeling spots to choose from, it can feel next to impossible to either narrow it down to just a few or even find the best ones to try out. When you’re trying to sort the best of the best, it’s no simple task!
That’s why we have created this guide for you! We are going to help narrow down your searches for your next beach vacation, by showing you some of the best snorkeling spots on the Island of Maui.
Starting off this guide with one of the most iconic snorkeling areas on our list, we have Molokini crater, one of the most popular pots for this underwater pastime in Southwest Maui.
This uninhabited crescent-shaped island was formed from a submerged volcano, creating the land that you see now.
Molokini is part of a submerged larger island that would have been a part of a larger network of volcanic islands, known as Maui Nui by geologists.
What this means for divers is that the shallow water around the crater makes this an aquatic wildlife hotspot, with hundreds of species of marine animals to swim with and watch.
The crate cliff face also makes it one of the best wall dives for snorkelers and scuba divers in Maui.
And being only a couple of miles from the Maui shoreline, it is pretty accessible too. No wonder this spot is loved by so many!
Bays are always a hotspot when it comes to snorkelers, and Honolua bay is no exception to that rule.
The shallow water of the bay makes this the perfect place to float and observe shallow-water marine life.
Turtles love basking in the shallow water in the morning and the reef at the very end of the bay is a thriving aquatic community, thanks to the reef that lives on its edge and the life that it supports, from needle fish, several butterfly fish species, and a ton of others that you’ll have to discover for yourself.
Plus, Honolua bay’s beach itself is a gorgeous spot to just soak up some rays. Whether you stick to the land or dive under the waters, there’s something to do here for everyone.
Who doesn’t love seeing turtles will out snorkeling? So of course, a place that is famous for them is going to be a premium spot for snorkelers!
The Hawaiian archipelago is famous for its iconic green sea turtles, and turtle town is the perfect place to see them for yourself on Maui.
Thanks to policies that have turned this corner of Maui into a protected conservation zone, thanks to the Endangered Species Act, this stretch of coastline that runs along the south of Maui has become a haven for this turtle species, along with a wide range of other marine animals.
Plus, with the gentle sea breeze and generally calm weather conditions, weather is also unlikely to be an issue when planning a trip here.
Add that to the clear waters, and gentle sloping incline that accommodates divers and snorkelers of all depths and levels of experience, and you have the perfect combination for a prime piece of snorkeling real estate!
If you’re looking for a snorkeling spot that combines clear waters, vibrant sea life, and a big beach to boot, then you’ll need to stop off at Black Rock Beach.
Found in Ka’anapali, black rock is the perfect place to find coral life, especially at the north end of the beach. The networks of caves and shallow waters allow for the perfect conditions for aquatic animals to flourish.
But wait, it gets even better!
In the summer, the black rocks under the waves reflect the sound of whale songs from the deep ocean. This means that, if you time your visit right in summer, you’ll also find that this beach is a great place to hear whale songs.
Just keep an out past the northern tip of the beach, as the current can be surprisingly strong and chaotic, so make sure that you only travel up here if the weather is calm and safe enough.
If you’re looking for a beach and a snorkeling area that is accessible, then Mokuleia bay is where you should be heading!
Like turtle town, this bay is protected for animal life under the waves, this time by the Marine Life Conservation district that was set up here in 1978.
This bay is also known as ‘slaughterhouse’ thanks to the one that use to operate on one of the surrounding cliffs. But don’t let the name fool you. This beach is perfect for the whole family.
With little to no building development around the bay, its natural beauty is on display from the moment you step on the beach, and into the water.
If the coral is what you are looking for, you need to see Coral Gardens!
Located near the SouthWest Maui shore, this diving spot has everything, from Coral reefs to bright fish of all different shapes and colors, turtles, and a beautiful ocean floor that stretches on past its crystal-clear waters.
There’s plenty to explore at this site, for both experienced and beginner snorkelers, and the ocean floor slopes at the ideal angle for dicing at virtually all levels.
As you can see, there’s no shortage of gorgeous sites when it comes to snorkeling in Maui, So grab your gear, and get out there!
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