This is the Part II. of our Best Snorkeling Maui Beaches post, enjoy it!
Honolua Bay: located on the north western end of Maui. It is a marine life conservation area. The water in the Honolua Bay is very calm because it is surrounded by high cliffs. There is a concrete boat ramp in the middle of the bay. On the left side of the ramp the shore is dark sandy and the visibility could be bad, but if you swim out from this area the sand will be white and the water will be clear. The right side of the ramp is rocky, be careful because the rocks are slippery! The middle of the bay has a white sandy shore, the water is 4-6 m deep (13-20 feet).
You can see the most corals on the right side of the bay with different tropical fish like butterfly fish, parrot fish, surgeon fish, wrasse, damsel fish, Hawaii State fish “Humuhumunukunukuapuaa”, hawkfish, jacks, mullets, turtles, eels, cardinal fish, box fish without wholeness. The wonderful sea life makes Honolua bay one of the best snorkeling Maui beaches.
The Honolua Bay is also a popular spot by surfers. People say that there are the most perfect waves in all of Hawaii. The surfer spot is located out on the right site of the bay, so the waves won’t effect you while snorkeling.
Ulua and Mokapu beaches: small but sweet little beaches not far from Wailea. The Ulua beach is right next to the Mokapu beach, they are connected by a path so you can visit two best snorkeling Maui beaches at the same time. Easy acces to the water, the north end of Ulua Beach is the best for snorkeling. You can start at Ulua and snorkel to right away around the reef to Mokapu. On the shore you can take the path back to the Ulua Beach. Healthy corals, plenty of fish and turtles can be observed at Ulua and Mokapu.
Polo beach: friendly little beach amog the best snorkeling Maui beaches. If you prefer quite beaches, the Polo is your place to go! Can be busy in front of the Polo Club Hotel, but other areas are normally not crowded. Small and clean beach, like a little private paradise.The Polo beach can be found between Makena and Wailea. Snorkeling is good during calms seas you can watch underwater caves and arches here. It is not recommended if it is windy because the winds whirls the sand and the visibility is very bad and the rip currents can be also dangerous.
Ahihi Kinau Natural Area Reserve: the unique landscape of Ahihi makes this place a pretty one on the best snorkeling Maui beaches list. This marine conservation area is located on the south of Makena. Te Ahihi Kinau is part of the Hawaii’s Natural Area Reserve System. The beach is black sandy, there are lava rocks everywhere, in and out of water. Normally the Ahihi Kinau is not busy, best time for snorkeling is the morning time before the wind starts to pick up.
Hundreds of fish, eels, and sea creatures and different corals can be observed in the shallow water, between the rocks. Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles are also frequent visitors here. This place is recommended for tentative snorkelers and kids as well.
Molokini crater: The Molokini crater is the most popular destination among the best snorkeling Maui beaches. It is a volcanic atoll 5 km (3 miles)off the southwest coast of Maui, a marine life and bird conservation district. The northern part of the rim is underwater, the southern is above, the Molokini crater has a unique crescent shape. The partially submerged crater is approx 800 m (half mile) in diameter.
The snorkeling spots are protected from wind ans waves offering safe snorkeling tours for the whole family. The visibility is great at Molokini at all times ( up to 45 m, 150 feet). The fish and other sea creatures are very friendly because they are comfortable with the presence of snorkelers. You will enjoy your snorkeling among tropical fish, turtles and even manta rays and white tip sharks can be seen here. Sometimes even humpback whales, whale sharks and monks seals can be spotted in the area. Molokini is only accessible by boat, many tour operators offer daily charters.
Olowalu: The Olowalu Reef, an oceanfront area on the west side of the island, is the home to one of Hawaii’s most beautiful reef system. To mention some reasons why we must mention Olowalu as one of the best snorkeling Maui beaches is: hundred of years old large coral heads, this area has the oldest reef systems in the Hawaiian Islands, many turtles, black tip shark nursery can be found here and and the reef is home to more than 350 manta rays! Sounds great! Olowalu is also known as Turtle Reef. A “turtle cleaning station” operates here, many turtles come here to take a rest on the coral reefs in the shallow water and they let the small fish to clean them 🙂
The snorkeling places are protected from trade winds, so here you could go snorkeling at all times. The water is shallow, especially close to the shoreline, perfect for children and for novice snorkelers as well. In the crystal clear water you can see different type of soft and hard corals, more than 20 species of them are very rare!
The reef has one of the few black tip shark nursery in entire Hawaii. Female sharks come here every year to give birth in this protected calm-water area. Snorkeling at Olowalu will meet your expectations for sure giving you unforgottable memories! The best is to snorkel Olowalu from boat, because the reef is extremely shallow near the shore.
Of course this is not the full “best snorkeling Maui beaches” list. As there are more than 30 snorkeling Maui beaches and bays, if you visit this wonderful island, you will find your favourite ones for sure!
If you have already visited some of the best snorkeling Maui beaches, feel free to share your pictures on our Instagram account @snorkel.around.the.world !
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