Monday, January 20, 2014

Where to Snorkel in Maui

Yesterday we booked a last minute tour to snorkel at the Island of Lanai. Booking one day in advance is not recommended - you have more options if you plan 2-3 days in advance. We got lucky, and there were 4 seats available on a zodiac boat with Maui Adventure Tours.

Snorkeling is a little pricey (about $100, or even less if you book directly from the company vs. from the hotel), but totally worth it. Seeing the reefs and the brilliantly colored fish up close was surreal. We left from Slip #11 at Lahaina Harbor and spent about 2 hours in the water, splashing around in our flippers and goggles. I also brought my iPhone under with me, carefully protected by a Lifeproof case and a Frieq brand waterproof bag. This was our first time snorkeling and it was surprisingly easy. After a 2 minute lesson from the naturalist on the Maui Adventure Cruise boat, we were jumping off the side and snorkeling around without too much flailing or inhalation of water. The staff on the boat, Becca and Rob, were friendly, helpful, and all around good people. We snorkeled at two stops, and though both were beautiful, the second was particularly cool because it was a lava mass that came to a pinnacle where our boat was parked. This meant you could see not only the shallow reef area, but also the cobalt deep water that surrounded it.

Another 2 hours were spent on the boat, where we were frequently surrounded by whales that came as close as 40 feet from our boat. It was so close that when it was breached, you could tell that it was a female because of a lump the size of a volleyball located under the tail. Whales do not usually approach boats as they pass, but when they do, it's called being "mugged." We could even hear the "songs of the humpback whales" from a hydrophone that the naturalist placed in the water. It was truly a whale watch and snorkeling adventure in one. While the tour company claims to see dolphins 80% of the time, we were in the unlucky 20% of tours, and didn't spot any dolphins, which was kind of a disappointment. Overall though, the whole trip was an amazing experience.

1 comment:

  1. we've enjoyed our trips to Molokini on Paragon, as much for the overall experience as Molokini itself. BUT do agree that Lana'i would be the hands down winner for a snorkeling excursion.
    lanai snorkel tour