Hawaii snorkeling secrets or tips?!?!

Discussion in 'The Bucket' started by TravisVT, Apr 2, 2014.

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  1. TravisVT

    TravisVT Fire Worm

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    I am in the final stages or planning my honeymoon to Hawaii! and I am looking for any information/insider tips from anybody that has visited before. Looking for recommendations on great snorkeling areas as well as any must do or must see things, not necessarily snorkeling related. We will be spending 3 days in Oahu, 3 days on the big island, and 7 days in Maui this September. We are really excited to see the islands and we both cant wait to snorkel and see many of the fish in our tanks in their natural environment. Any thoughts or ideas will be much appreciated!
     
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  3. Corailline

    Corailline Super Moderator Staff Member

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    It is a dry heat, yeah right !
    Honolua Bay is the best. The farther out the bigger the fish. Tons of corals and inverts. Offers shallow snorkeling to advanced. Wear a tee shirt or a light skin to avoid sun burn because you'll not be allow to use most sun screens and enter the water. Get some cheap reef booties for wading.

    You could try Molokini, it's pretty touristy. But safe snorkeling. I have seen some black tip reef sharks there.

    Napili Bay and cove are nice, tons of green sea turtles. A lot of wrasse and tangs.

    Honolua Bay, Maui | GoHawaii.com.

    For Oahu: Hanauma Bay, it's a tourist trap but offers barely ok snorkeling. I do not know any good spots on Oahu.

    Both islands though stay one the leeward side for snorkeling and diving.
     
  4. SaltyClown

    SaltyClown Sea Dragon

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    My wife and I went for 11 days in end of September into early October of 09. We went to all the islands. We went snorkeling out on Molokini crater. Was okay, but it's 8 miles out from the island, if I'm not mistaken and the sea was ruff. Long boat ride. That's the only snorkeling we did. I will say though, some people I met there, told my wife and I that if we wanted to see amazing coral reefs, we should have gone to the Caribbean. I hope you have the best time in Hawaii. I'd never go back.
     
  5. oldfishkeeper

    oldfishkeeper Giant Squid

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    I just called my dad because they've been several times and took us once. He had found this little cove with black sand and it had the best snorkeling ever!!!! My stepmom just told me it was on Kona though :(.....it was my very first snorkeling experience and it totally spoiled me forever because any other snorkeling I've done (on the Caribbean is nothing compared to Hawaii). The sea turtles come right up to you and tons of beautiful fish in big schools not far out. If he calls me back with the name of the beach, I'll update it here.

    I would follow Corailline's advice - she's an experienced diver so she knows the info.!! You will absolutely love Hawaii. I found it to be everything and more than what it's cracked up to be!
     
  6. SkyFire

    SkyFire Clown Trigger

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    I've been to Oahu twice.
    Only snorkeled at Shark's Cove but it's kinda nice and peaceful since it's protected from ocean wave action. Fish there but no coral. Also behind the fire station is a "garden" of sorts the locals call Crazy Woman's Garden where a homeless woman with a pair of pruning sheers & twisty ties has made sculptures of the natural plants, kinda cool.
    Kayaking out to Molokai i was fun and saw sea turtles on the way (start early in the day so you don't have to worry about getting the kayak back in time). Snorkeling there was ok for fish but again no corals.

    Other things to do
    I've hiked to Manoa Falls which is nice (but you can't swim in it) but I think the jungle/hike is the better part of the experience. If you go bring rain gear/have a pouch for your camera & use shoes you don't mind getting muddy. Also if the trail where the bamboo is is too slippery go off to the side in the bamboo because the roots give you more traction.
    Waimea Falls is supposed to be beautiful as is the hike with the added benefit of a paved trail and ability to swim, the park also has activities $15 entry fee.
    If you're looking for hiking/waterfalls I found this http://www.best-of-oahu.com/Hawaii-Waterfalls.html

    Go to Top of Waikiki, it's a revolving restaurant, it's pricey so we just sent for desert & drinks, though lunch may be more affordable too.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2014
  7. mdbostwick

    mdbostwick Vlamingii Tang

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    My wife and I went scuba diving while we were in the Caribbean, the one thing we were grateful for was that we scuba dived instead of snorkeled because we could get right in the reef area and the snorkelers were 30 ft up. just my 2 cents
     
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  9. TravisVT

    TravisVT Fire Worm

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    Thank you all for the replies! Looking forward it doing more research and hearing from others on what to do. I did hear from a friend that I need to climb the "stairway to heaven" in Oahu. Technically it is illegal but it does look amazing :)
     
  10. FatBastad

    FatBastad Zoanthid

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    I'm getting hitched in September as well.

    ...haven't put much thought into the honeymoon tho...

    I'd love to do Hawaii but it's not in the cards this go-round.
    Hope you have a great time!
     
  11. rocketmandb

    rocketmandb Ocellaris Clown

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    Here are some spots on Maui.

    As Corailline said, Honolua Bay is absolutely amazing. The cove is a sanctuary and fish are just everywhere. Swim out to the right (north) side near the entrance to the bay and you'll see some amazing reef formations. The best thing about this spot is that it isn't overly crowded, you can park and walk to it. This was, by far, the best shore dive/snorkel I've ever done.

    Molokini crater is another great snorkel spot, but you need to be on a boat to get there. It also gets crowded. When my wife and I went, we took the Pacific Whale Foundation's early tour which gets you there 30 min before most other boats. We were there during whale season and there were whales literally 100 yards away from the crater. When we put our heads under water we could hear the whale song. Was awesome, though crowded.

    Another great spot was Turtle Town off of Maluaka Beach (southern end). It was part of the Pacific Whale Foundation trip we took, but you can swim out from the beach. Turtles everywhere!

    Olowalu on the west side south of Lahaina is pretty cool. Long stretch of shoreline right next to the highway. Relatively few people make this fun. The bummer here for me is that there was a shark attack here like ten years ago and the state put up beware of shark signs everywhere. There are no more sharks here than anywhere else, but my wife got freaked by the signs so only I went in and not for very long because she was alone on the shore.

    You will see Blackrock in a lot of guide literature. It is on a beach northwest by one of the big hotels (forget which one). We did a short snorkel here, but weren't enamored with it.
     
  12. ingtar_shinowa

    ingtar_shinowa Giant Squid

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    My tip would be to get scuba certified with your wife before the trip. Its well worth it and you do not get to Hawaii very often.