SEMI-PRIVATE SNORKEL TOURS

Maui’s Best Eco Snorkel & Dolphin Tour

Maui’s only Semi-Private and Family-Style eco raft ventures from Lahaina, Maui to Lanai for snorkeling and dolphin watching with less than 18 guests onboard.  This Maui snorkel adventure the closest to a private charter experience you can get!

Tour Highlights

  • <18 Passengers Semi-Private Snorkel Tour
  • 5-Hour Snorkel Tour
  • 3 Certified Lifeguards onboard
  • Snorkel Instruction for Beginners
  • Breakfast, Lunch and Snacks & Beverages provided

Adults (Ages 13+)$189

Kids (Ages 4-12)$169

Private charters available!

Snorkel Maui’s neighbor island of Lanai and watch dolphins on our small group eco-tour with <18 passengers.

 Our Award-Winning Lanai Tour is Maui’s only Semi-Private 5-hour snorkel tour on an adventure vessel! Snorkel 2-3 snorkel spots and stop to enjoy breakfast, lunch, snacks and beverages. Our Maui snorkel tours suit snorkelers of all levels and offer beginner- friendly snorkel instruction. Additionally this snorkel tour includes 3
Certified Lifeguards onboard, flotation devices and a marine naturalist who will help you learn about Maui’s sister island Lanai, marine animals, including dolphins and Hawaiian history.

Snorkel with tropical fish and look for sea turtles near the coast of Lanai or West Maui. Other marine animal sightings may include an octopus, rays, eels and more! Search for dolphins in their natural habitat as we cruise Lanai’s sea cliffs. We see dolphins on almost every snorkel trip (9/10). Our Maui Snorkel tour includes whale watching in lieu of a snorkel stop from Dec-April
during migration.

What’s Included
  • Semi-Private Shared Snorkel Tour < 18 Passengers
  • 3 Certified Lifeguards onboard for safe snorkeling
  • 5 Hour Tour, 2-3 Snorkel stop and search for dolphins
  • Snorkeling for All Levels
  • Snorkel Instruction and flotation devices for beginners
  • Wetsuit tops available for rent $20
  • Breakfast, Lunch, Snacks & Beverages
  • Marine Naturalist education

Gear up in clean and sanitized high quality snorkel gear included in the snorkel tour. Floatation devices including float belts and pool noodles for all level snorkelers. Short sleeve wetsuit tops available to rent at check-in for $20.

Our 3 Crew Certified Lifeguards and Marine Naturalist are onboard for a fun and safe snorkel experience, sharing educational information about Maui, snorkeling and dolphins and will offer one-on-one snorkel instruction.

Breakfast: Sweet pastry with fresh fruit including watermelon and pineapple.

Lunch: Wraps – Chicken Caesar, Ham BLT, or Falafel/Veggie.
(GF wrap available upon request.)

Snacks: Maui style potato chips and cookies.

Beverages: Soda, diet soda, green tea and water. BYOB adult beverages ok, please no glass containers.

What to Expect

Check-in at least 30 minutes prior to your snorkel tour. Our crew who are certified lifeguards will talk with you about your snorkel experience and fit you with quality snorkel gear. Boarding our small group vessel we leave from Lahaina and head across the channel to the nearby island of Lanai.

Our first stop will include snorkeling and breakfast. Our marine naturalist will be in the water and act as as guide, pointing out unique marine life which may include tropical fish, sea turtles and more.

On our way to our second snorkel stop we will be on the look-out for dolphins. When we spot them we will stop and watch them spin and interact with each other.

The 5 hour snorkel may include 2 or 3 snorkel stops, depending on the ocean’s conditions. A lunch break will include fresh deli wraps, snack and beverages, talking story with our marine naturalist crew and getting to know your fellow snorkelers before heading back to Maui.

What to Bring Snorkeling

Bring towels, hat, sunglasses, reef safe sunscreen or a sun shirt! BYOB ok, just no glass containers. Waterproof bag for personal items. Camera or Gopro for photos and videos. Gratuity for crew (Venmo accepted)

Departure & Directions
  • May-November 7am Check-in for 7:30am Departure
  • December-April – TBD

DIRECTIONS: Check-in at Dive Maui Shop, 1223 Front St, Lahaina. Parking at Longs at Lahaina Cannery Mall. Park and walk toward the ocean to Front Street. Make a left and walk over the bridge. The dive shop is on the right, next to Snorkel Bob’s blue building.

Our temporary Lahaina location for our snorkel tours is approximately 15 minutes from Kaanapali and 20 minutes from other West Maui locations including Kahana, Napili and Kapalua. Our snorkel tours are nearby for visitors staying in West Maui, but also a great option for visitors staying in Kihei or Wailea that want to venture to West Maui and explore the calm waters off the coast of Lahaina, Maui.

Vessels

Due to the loss of our rafts in the Lahaina fire, we will be temporarily operating these small group vessels for our snorkel tours.

    • Kai Oma’o 34′ Small Ocean Monohull <18 Passengers

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Policies & Participant Restrictions

Due to our style of vessel and activities, no children under 4 on tours, no pregnant or persons with back or neck injuries.

Please no spray sunscreen, rub on reef safe sunscreen is welcome!

At least 24 hour notice for cancellations and refunds. For parties of 5 or more, 72 hours notice is required. Private Charters require a 7 days notice of cancellation for full refund.

Tours may be canceled or rescheduled by Hawaii Ocean Rafting due to capacity or weather. Snorkeling Lanai is always our goal, but if ocean conditions do not permit channel crossing, Maui snorkel spots may substitute Lanai. Dolphins are wild animals. we do our best to find them but do not guarantee sightings.

Reserve your spot

Adults (Ages 13+)$189

Kids (Ages 4-12) $169

Private Charter$2,750

Kamaaina discount available with HI Driver License

Select Private Charter option or call direct to book.

“Best Snorkel Trip Ever!”

“Callen and Paul were fantastic. They both helped our private tour feel comfortable while rafting and snorkeling. The best part was that they scoped out private spots where we had reefs all to ourselves. Their knowledge and kindness helped me fall in love with snorkeling. Wish i could go back and spend more time with them. Highly recommend Hawaiian Ocean Rafting – local, small, superior knowledge.”


– P201fvcarac, TripAdvisor

“Lanai Morning Snorkel Trip!”

“Jill, Scott and Val were great guides and lots of fun. We went to two fantastic snorkeling spots and saw a huge pod of spinner dolphins up close. Highly recommended!”


-Keith_R-TripAdvisor

“Wonderful Experience Snorkel!”

“Such helpful guides, caring, knowledgeable about marine life and local history. Made all ages and ability levels feel comfortable and safe. We highly recommend this experience – it is worth every penny. We were able to swim with a sea turtle, boat alongside pods of spinner dolphins and watch many different species of fish in the awesome coral reef.”


-Nikole, Airbnb

Are you a beginner snorkeler?

Learn to snorkel with us!

One-on-One Instruction

Because our tours are small in size, you

get one-on-one while learning how to

snorkel and use snorkel gear.

Certified Lifeguards Onboard

Our crew are all certified lifeguards.

This company policy ensures you

have qualified guides while snorkeling.

Snorkel Support Gear

We offer high-quality snorkel gear and

additional floatation devices so you can

relax and enjoy snorkeling.

Local Guides and a Family-Style Hawaiian Experience

Small group snorkel tours from Lahaina create a family-style experience by giving everyone the chance to get to know each other. We are family and Hawaiian-owned and want everyone to have an ohana experience with us. The smaller group gives our marine naturalists to educate each snorkeler about Maui, sustainability and snorkeling. Because we choose destination snorkel spots like Lanai, you get to experience authentic encounters with Maui’s marine life away from crowds. 

Selecting the Best Places to Snorkel in Maui

Before snorkeling, select a snorkel location that has clear, calm water. Contact the local snorkel store for snorkel reports or book a snorkel tour where guides take you to the best snorkel spots. If in doubt, don’t go out. That’s what we say here in Maui when we are considering snorkeling and assessing the ocean’s conditions. Avoid snorkeling after recent rainfall if the water is murky. If waves or signs are indicating high surf or current, avoid snorkeling or getting in the ocean. Lanai offers many snorkel locations that have crystal clear waters and healthy reef.

Equip with the Right Snorkel Gear

Having high-quality snorkel gear that fits correctly can make or break your snorkel experience. You want a snorkel mask that fits snug but not too tight. Avoid full-face snorkel masks as they do not allow for proper air circulation. The 2 piece mask and snorkel are the best and safest options. It’s important to use a snorkel mask defog to keep the mask from fogging while you are snorkeling. Snorkel stores sell defog, or a small drop of baby shampoo does the trick too! For
snorkel fins, select a size close to your shoe size. You want them snug as they will loosen when you get in the water and begin snorkeling. Our snorkel tours include high-quality snorkel gear and our crew will help you find the right fit.

Ensuring Safety and Confidence while Snorkeling

Always snorkel with a buddy. If gear fails or you feel ill, snorkeling with a buddy will ensure you make it back to shore safely. Snorkeling on a guided tour is the best snorkel choice as a trained snorkel guide will teach you how and where to snorkel and ensure your gear is working correctly. Our snorkel guides are marine naturalists and certified lifeguards. Booking a tour takes all the guesswork out and will help build confidence as a beginner snorkeler or if you are just new to snorkeling in Maui. Once you feel comfortable snorkeling, rent snorkel gear and go snorkeling with a friend, using all the snorkel tips you learned on your snorkel tour.

Wildfire Impacted Business

Support Lahaina’s Recovery

Mahalo for your support this season, especially as we rebuild after the Lahaina fires! Your support of our small local business helps our team of Lahaina and Maui locals get back to work and on the ocean to heal.

Dolphin Watching

in Maui.

Eye-level dolphin encounters made possible by our eco rafts.

Where to see dolphins in Maui

Dolphin watching in Maui is one of the most special marine animal encounters you can experience while visiting Hawaii. Not only are there many species of dolphins in Maui, they reside here year-round. Pods of dolphins can be seen along the coast of Maui, near Kihei, Lahaina and the neighboring island of Lanai.

So what’s the best way to see dolphins in Maui?
Because they are much smaller than whales, dolphins can be more difficult to spot from shore. You can occassionally see them off the coast of South Maui at La Peruse Bay or near the Kamaole Beach Parks
Some pods frequent the coast of West Maui near Lahaina and also Honolua Bay. Sometimes spinner dolphins form what experts call megapods of hundreds of dolphins and these pods are much easier to spot. We can also see these pods regularly near the island of Lanai.
The best way to see dolphins in Maui is by boat. You can cover more ocean looking for resident pods and observe from the vessel. Dolphin tours in Maui are typically a part of snorkel tours or you can book a private charter and search for dolphins near West Maui or Lanai.

Dolphin Encounters; What to Expect

Dolphins (Nai’a) are protected in Hawaii, which means no swimming or snorkeling with dolphins and we cannot approach them within regulated distance. This is why having a low to water rafting vessel is the best way to encounter dolphins as it provides close to water viewing when the dolphins decide to approach and the opportunity to dip your underwater camera in the water from the side of the boat, capturing epic video and photos of dolphins and other marine life.

Maui Dolphin Facts & Species

Each dolphin is given a unique name (specific sound) by it’s pod.

Dolphins communicate using sounds that are whistles and high pitch squeaking.

Dolphins are mammals and give birth to their live young in the water and nurse them.

Like all toothed whales, bottlenose dolphins are predatory animals and feed on crabs, fish, octopus and other marine animals.

When not resting, dolphins are some of the fastest swimming marine mammals, sprinting up to 22 mph.

Dolphins can give birth to one young every year typically in spring or fall after reachign sexual maturity around the age of 7 years old. The average lifespan is around 20 years, but dolphins have been know to live up to 50 years.

There are at least 8 dolphin species found in Maui near Lanai, but the three most common we see are spinner dolphins, bottlenose dolphins and spotted dolphins.

Spinner dolphins are the smallest of the three species weighing in at 4-7 ft in length and 50-170 lbs. Known for their aerial acrobatics, spinner dolphins can travel in pods up to 300 animals, making them a very playful and social species. Because spinner dolphins are nocturnal feeders, recent legislation has come into law protecting them from human encounters, like swimming with dolphins, that may disrupt their sleeping, eating and reproduction. As the dolphin pod moves during the day, they are prac- ticing resting behaviors which is called “milling”. During their resting period, which can be approximately 4-5 hours from sunrise to late afternoon, spinner dolphins will rest half of their brain, while the other half remains active to control breathing and possibly monitor for predators. This is the time of day when mom and calf dolphins interact the most as well and seeing baby spinner dolphins will definitely melt your heart.

Bottlenose dolphins are the species you may be familiar with in film or television. Bottlenose dolphins are found all over the world in every tropical and temperate ocean, the only place you won’t find them are the Artic and Antartic Oceans. It’s estimat- ed a few thousand have made Hawaii their home, permanently residing in pods of two-fifteen animals. Because their pods are smaller, it is often harder to spot bottlenose dolphins compared with their sister species the spinner dolphins. Spinners are some of the larger dolphin species growing to lengths of 6-15 feet and adults weighing up to 1400 lbs.

Pantropical spotted dolphins are, well you probably guessed, spotted! Their darker spots can be seen on the lighter underside of their belly, not showing until they are around the age of 5 years. This species’ coloring and size does vary depending on where it resides. Some species outside of Hawaii can have almost no spots even into adulthood. Unlike bottlenose who reside more in shallow water, pantropical spotted dolphins are found in both shallow and deep water. Most spotted dolphins travel in pods averaging around 65 animals, but will sometimes travel alone or in mega pods up to 350 animals. Spinner dolphins aren’t the only species that jump, all dolphins can, and spotted dolphins can jump up to 15 feet out of the water.

Dolphin’s (Naia) in Hawaiian History

Dolphins or Nai’a are considered ‘aumakua in our Hawaiian culture. ’Aumakua are spiritual guides and ancestral guardians that protect their ohana (family). There are some debates on dolphins being mentioned in Hawaiian history as they are not named specifically in traditional stories, myths or legends. The word nai‘a Some historians believe they were mentioned but under another name mano (shark). There are many stories of sharks and when thoroughly examined the description of the “shark” and it’s behavior implies that of a dolphin. One such example is the story of Mangaia and the goddess ‘Ina. Some have conclud- ed that the Hawaiian term mano was used interchangeably with sharks and dolphins in stories told.

Stories that do mention nai’a like No ka Lawai’a a me kāna Wahine, talked about dolphins having special powers, granting wishes and almost being human-like.

Why Snorkel Lanai from Lahaina?

Our morning snorkel tours take snorkelers to Maui’s nearby neighbor island, Lanai. Lanai offers the best snorkeling, and compared with Molokini, snorkel locations are less crowded and have more marine life. Lanai is more remote and its snorkel locations are easiest to access from Lahaina on smaller, faster boats.

We also have a chance to spot some of our favorite sea animals, dolphins. Dolphins frequent the channel between Maui and Lanai and we see them about 9/10 trips.

Lanai has more than a dozen snorkel spots around the island, most of our favorite snorkel spots are located along the east and south shores of the island.

Ocean conditions and weather determine which locations we can snorkel on any given day, but with many snorkel locations to choose from and lots of marine life, Lanai offers some of the best snorkeling in Maui.

Lanai Snorkeling- for all level snorkelers

Lanai snorkel tours are for all level snorkelers and every snorkel spot is selected to be beginner friendly and fun for all levels of snorkelers. Our experienced captains select snorkel locations with the mildest current along Lanai’s shallow coast line with marine life including tropical fish, turtles and on occasion octopus, rays and other sea creatures. Between snorkel stops, we frequently encounter dolphins as their pods travel around Lanai and across the channel back to Maui.

Best Place to Snorkel on Lanai

Club Lanai Snorkel Spot

The closest snorkel stop is 8 miles directly across the channel from Lahaina. This spot is called Club, named for the busy club house that previously welcomed tourists at that beach. Club can often have crystal clear water, turtles, tropical fish and small reef sharks, making it one of our favorite snorkel stops.

Shark Fin Snorkel Spot

Shark Fin is a fan favorite snorkel stop thanks to its unique pinnacle reefs and variety of tropical fish. Named for the coral reef that jets out of the water in a shark fin shape, this snorkel stop is most commonly snorkeled on our 6HR snorkel tour. Shark fin is home to pyramid butterfly fish, parrot fish, octopus, tangs and many more schools of fish that you will snorkel with.

Manele Bay Snorkel Spot

Manele Bay is tucked away in a secluded bay overlooked by the Four Seasons Resort Lanai. This snorkel spot is popular for visitors staying on the island of Lanai as it’s an easy access from the sandy beach. When weather is less cooperative on the rest of the island, Lanai’s public small boat harbor makes for snorkeling in calmer winds and seas. See tropical fish and turtles at this popular snorkel spot.

Sweetheart Rock Snorkel Spot

Sweetheart Rock is as beautiful above water as it is below. With its unique rock formation, Puu Pehe, towering at 80 feet tall and legend of the tragic romance of Maui and Lanai lovers, this popular snorkel spot has lots to love. Tropical fish and sea turtles can be spotted here and Lanai’s resident spinners frequently pass by this snorkel stop.

There are many more Lanai snorkel spots that are remote and teeming with marine life like Fish Rock, Armchair, Lopa, Dinosaur, Budha Bay, Lighthouse and Barge Harbor, to name a few.

About Maui’s neighbor island Lanai

Lana’i was formed by one large extinct volcano, Lanaihale, and is one of the smallest inhabited islands (with approx 3,200 residents), in Hawaii, almost completely privately owned by Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle. Lana’i was once home to the Dole Pineapple plantation, but is now known best for its pristine, remote snorkeling spots, exclusive resort and local community. Because the island of Lana’i has little coastal development or tourism, the reefs are better protected and are home to unique reef fish, turtles and multiple pods of a variety of dolphin species.

At their highest point, Lanai’s sea cliffs reach 300 meters (almost 1000 feet). While geologists still debate the event that led to these massive rock slides and sea cliff formations, there is no debate on the breathtaking view of these sea cliffs.

Lanai also holds many legends, one in particular about its inhabitants. Early inhabitants of Hawaii avoided Lanai because of its volcanic activity. One particular legend tells the story of Lanai as an evil land, where visiting it was forbidden. The legend says Maui’s chief sent his son, Prince Kaulalau, to drive away the evil spirits. Some stories say he was banished there, either way, he succeeded in his mission, exorcising the island, gaining control of Lanai and encouraging the native people from nearby islands to move to this newly inhabitable island.

It wasn’t until the 1790’s that Lanai became a part of the Hawaiian Kingdom under King Kamehameha. This wasn’t without resistance and blood shed. Lanai became primarily ranch land for sheep and cattle until it was purchased by the Dole family for $1.1 million dollars and became home to the Dole Pineapple Plantation in 1922, producing an estimated 75% of the world’s pineapple. High labor and land cost pushed Dole to phase out pineapple farming on Lanai over 150 years later in 1992, and later selling to Larry Ellison in 2012 for $300 million.

Today the island of Lanai has one small town, Lanai City, with a few places to dine, two hotels and not one traffic light to be found. A cultural center, cat sanctuary and some historic landmarks are a few things to see on the island, but the best part of visiting Lanai is along its coast, viewed from the water or while snorkeling its pristine reef.

Lanai

Snorkeling.

Need to Know.

Learn why Lanai snorkeling makes it on Maui’s list of top snorkeling spots.

Related Snorkel Tours

Afternoon Snorkel

2.5 HOURSAGES 4+

$149+

Afternoon Maui Turtle Snorkel

All level snorkeling along the west coast of Maui in search of tropical fish and sea turtles! Snacks and snorkel gear included.

Lanai Snorkel Tour

5 HOURSAGES 4+

$189+

Lanai Snorkel & Dolphin Watch

All level snorkeling to the island of Lanai. Dolphin watch and enjoy breakfast & lunch. Snorkel gear included.

Maui’s best snorkel
spots near you.

Here’s a list of Maui’s favorite snorkel spots near you, so you can stop searching and start snorkeling!

Best snorkeling spots near

West Maui

West Maui is located on the western coast of our island, sheltered by the West Maui mountains. From the airport you drive past Maalea
and up the Pali coast to the calm coast of Lahaina.
Lahaina is divided into smaller communities that are still technically
the Lahaina. Some of these communities are Olowalu, Launiupoko,
Lahaina, Kaanapali, Napili, Kahana, Honokowai and Kapalua. There are many other smaller communities, but as a visitor these will be the most popular for accommodations.
If you are staying in a Lahaina community you’ll find endless options
for the best snorkeling experiences near you. Not only are the snorkel spots from shore popular, but the neighboring island of Lanai is only a short boat ride from Lahaina and is known for its snorkeling, sea cliffs and dolphins.

Popular Shore Access Snorkel Spots Near You
• Olowalu
• Black Rock:
• Honolua Bay
• Napili Bay

Popular Boat Access Snorkel Spots Near You
• Lanai (there are more than a dozen snorkel spots here)
• Honolua Bay (outer reef)
• Cliff House
• Launipoko

Best snorkeling spots near

South & Central Maui

South and Central Maui include the coast of Maalea, Kihei, Wailea and Makena and the residential areas of Wailuku and Kahului.
As a visitor to Maui in this area you would likely be staying in Maalea, Kihei or Wailea due to accommodation availability and beach access. Kihei and Wailea have some amazing shoreline access snorkel spots near you, and while Maalea does not, it’s harbor provides access to popular snorkel destinations the coast. While the south coast of Maui has many beautiful beaches, only a select few are good for snorkeling near you. Because the winds typically increase mid-morning, it’s best to snorkel early morning on the south side, whether it’s from shore or by boat.

Popular Shore Access Snorkel Spots Near You
• Keawakapu
• White Rock
• La Peruse Bay
• Makena Marine Reserve

Popular Boat Access Snorkel Spots Near You
• Molokini Crater
• Coral Gardens
• South Maui Turtle Town

Which Maui snorkel
destination is best?

Snorkel Molokini or Lanai? Let’s dive into all the snorkel details for Maui’s premier snorkel locations.

Snorkel Experience Expectations

While Molokini and Lanai are both popular destination spots, the experience is much different.
The size and style of vessels, number of snorkelers at these destinations and marine life encounters are varied depending on the snorkel spot.

Finding Snorkeling Near You

Where you stay on Maui can help you determine if you want to snorkel at Molokini or Lanai.

Knowing how far you will need to drive for your departure location can be a factor in your tour
selection The drive is part of the adventure too!

Weather’s Effect on Snorkel Spots

While both Molokini and Lanai offer snorkeling in warm Maui waters, the experience can be very
different due the destinations weather and how that impacts tours operators. The weather will impact the vessel style and consistency of the itinerary.

Molokini Snorkeling versus Lanai Snorkeling. Which is a better snorkel experience?

If your vacation accommodations are in Lahaina, Kaanapali, Napili, Kahana, Kapalua or on West Maui, snorkeling a destination that departs from Lahaina will be a much more convenient drive. There are no tour companies that offer Molokini snorkel tours from Lahaina because the travel time on the boat crosses areas that typically have poor ocean conditions and do not make for a pleasant boat ride. Choosing a snorkel tour to Lanai would be an easy choice for visitors staying on the West side of Maui. If you are staying in Maalea, Kihei or Wailea, Molokini may be a closer snorkel destination for you. Tour boat that snorkel Molokini typically depart from Maalea Boat Harbor or Kihei Boat Ramp.

The south side of Maui (Kihei, Wailea and Maalea) are subject to much windier conditions than the west side of Maui (Lahaina). Because of this the majority of Molokini tours will be early morning and also on larger vessels that fair better in a variety of ocean conditions. You will notice that many companies offering Molokini snorkel tours will disclose that weather can affect the tour and alternative locations like Coral Gardens will be snorkeled instead. These companies will make the best choice with the weather to give you a positive snorkel experience, but its helpful to know Molokini isn’t always an achievable snorkel destination. Because Lanai departure are from Lahaina, the ocean conditions are much more consistent due to the lee created by the West Maui mountains. This allows for smaller vessels to operate and snorkel tour times to vary near Lahaina. There can still be wind or rain on occassion but Lahaina is the dryest and least windy location on the island of Maui.

Is a Molokini snorkel tour or Lanai snorkel tour near you?

Molokini is a much smaller snorkel area (as you can see on the map) and the snorkel experience will be with at least a dozen other groups of 30-150 snorkelers per group. You will likely be taking a larger vessel to these destinations, but your driving time on the boat from Kihei to Molokini is only about 30 minutes so you typically have a shorter tour with more time in the water snorkeling. There are also more tour companies to choose from because of the departure locations. Snorkeling in the crater allows you to see tropical fish and on occasion turtles! The clear water of this unique geographical structure is what draws it’s visitors.

Maui’s neighbor island of Lanai has over a dozen snorkel locations to choose from which means you’re away from the crowds and snorkeling more remote reefs. The closest snorkel spot on Lanai is about a 30-minute boat ride on a small fast vessel. You won’t see many large boat tours visiting Lanai because they move slower and the drive time is longer for them. Lanai’s popular snorkel stops are 30-45 minutes from Lahaina and you will often come across pods of resident dolphins near Lanai. Dolphin watching is a popular feature included in Maui snorkel tours to Lanai. You will also see tropical fish, some turtles, and some other rare marine life like an octopus, rays and eels depending on your snorkel stop.

If your vacation accommodations are in Lahaina, Kaanapali, Napili, Kahana, Kapalua or on West Maui, snorkeling a destination that departs from Lahaina will be a much more convenient drive. There are no tour companies that offer Molokini snorkel tours from Lahaina because the travel time on the boat crosses areas that typically have poor ocean conditions and do not make for a pleasant boat ride. Choosing a snorkel tour to Lanai would be an easy choice for visitors staying on the West side of Maui.

If you are staying in Maalea, Kihei or Wailea, Molokini may be a closer snorkel destination for you. Tour boats that snorkel Molokini typically depart from Maalea Boat Harbor or Kihei Boat Ramp.

The south side of Maui (Kihei, Wailea and Maalea) is subject to much windier conditions than the west side of Maui (Lahaina). Because of this the majority of Molokini tours will be early morning and also on larger vessels that fair better in a variety of ocean conditions. You will notice that many companies offering Molokini snorkel tours will disclose that weather can affect the tour and alternative locations like Coral Gardens will be snorkeled instead. These companies will make the best choice with the weather to give you a positive snorkel experience, but its helpful to know Molokini isn’t always an achievable snorkel destination. Because Lanai departure are from Lahaina, the ocean conditions are much more consistent due to the lee created by the West Maui mountains. This allows for smaller vessels to operate and snorkel tour times to vary near Lahaina. There can still be wind or rain on occasion but Lahaina is the driest and least windy location on the island of Maui.

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Our mission is to provide a fun, authentic, aloha filled, Maui ocean experience that educates and inspires visitors to love and respect Hawaiian culture, the ocean and our island.

New Temporary Location: Dive Maui Shop, 1223 Front Street, Lahaina, HI 96761

Parking: Front Street or in Lahaina Cannery Mall parking lot.

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