Snorkeling in Maui

Jun 19th, 2003, 04:47 AM
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Snorkeling in Maui

Thinking of taking the Four Winds II snorkeling tour of Molokini while in Maui in 2 weeks. Is the morning tour really that crowded? Do you think it is still worth the trip? If not, any other snorkeling tours you would recommend? Thanks!
bellgrl1 is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 05:06 AM
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If you happen to be headed over the to the Big Island of Hawaii, the FairWind II out of Keahou (near Kona) is excellent, but suggest you reserve early. Also suggest checking guidebook "Maui Revealed" for comparison of snorkel operations. Aloha. ;-)
JohnD is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 08:45 AM
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We went on Four Winds in Nov. It's a great boat. We sat on the top level on the side benches. There are rows of benches in the center on top and seating on the other levels as well. Never felt crowded. Captain and crew were great. If I did this tour again I would stay on board while everyone rushes into the water. I'd then be there when the limited mahi mahi burgers are cooked. About 30 minutes later everyone gets out of the water to get a bite to eat or to rest. That's when I'd go in. You'll have plenty of time to see the fish without all the frenzy. We went in with everyone and then got out for lunch. Very few people return to snorkel after lunch even though the boat stays there for another hour. Most people start using the slide or sit around taking in the sun.
Suzie is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 08:51 AM
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We rented our equipment for 1 week (150$ total for 5 people) and asked for suggestions on where to go. They sold us a map of hot spots for 5 $s. After I told the guy I wouldn't pay for a trip, he admitted there were better places to go that I could walk to... and he gave me suggestions. We snorkled every day and loved it. When we go back (next March) - we'll do this again...
julie_Colorado is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 08:52 AM
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Since I soon will be headed to this region, Suzie do you recall what kind or variety of fish or coral that you saw? Was it any different or better than what you saw from Maui beach sites?
Mahalo.
JohnD is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 09:04 AM
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The absolute best snorkeling for us was at Ulua Beach right next door to the Renaissance. This beach has a reef that separates it from Mokapu which is right in front of the Renaissance. We parked in the beach parking and walked down to the beach. It has bathrooms and outdoor showers. It's a very nice beach. This was waaayyyyy better than the Sheraton and much better than Molokini. We drove down to La Perouse Bay but it was too rough at that time of day to snorkel (had kids with us). Looked like the people who braved it were having a great time.
Suzie is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 09:21 AM
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Sorry John don't think I answered the details of your question. At Ulua we saw moray eels, sea snakes (all curled up near a rock, it was just like seeing a snake on land so we swam away) and all the fish that are on the the waterproof card that Snorkel Bob's gives out. We saw only fish at both Molokini and Black rock. Nothing really out of the ordinary.
Suzie is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 09:52 AM
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Wow, sounds very exciting. I take it that you did not see any whalesharks or giant Manta rays that SB talks about on website as occassional visitors to Molokini. Our best so far in Hawaii has been near Capt. Cook Monument on Big Island. Saw cleaner wrasse running a cleaner station, an octopus, huge moorish idols, turles and a variety of coral. On Maui, Kapalua bay has easy access, showers, and a decent collection of smaller fish that you routinely see in Hawaii. Thanks again, can't wait to get there in October, I'll be sure not to mention the eels and snakes to Mrs JohnD. Mucho Mahalos.
JohnD is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 01:01 PM
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Wow, so Susie, is snorkeling at Ulua better than going to Hananumma Bay ( if you know) or Molokini? Certainly sounds cheaper than Molokini.
dolciani is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 01:10 PM
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Oh please, nothing is better than the marine preserve that is Hanauma Bay! But that's on Oahu.

When we went on our Molokini trip this past Nov, after having not made it there during any of our three previous visits, we were pretty disappointed in the amount and type of fish. Maybe we had built it up too much in our minds. Also I have never experienced Black Rock as being all that either. Going to Ulua was a totally unexpected treat and we hadn't seen that many varied fish in a long time. It's a great reef and not the mad house that occurs at Black Rock or Molokini.

It is possible that I just missed the right times to experience Molokini and Black Rock (though I've tried it 3 times). The boat trip to Molokini was a blast nontheless. Saw lots of turtles, from the boat-no stopping.
Suzie is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 01:17 PM
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My sister and I really enjoyed the Paragon trip we took to Lanai. It was an all day snorkeling trip in April and we paid a lot more than w/Boss Frogs .. but it was well worth it. We say a whale and her calf up close & personal and were escorted to Lanai by spinner dolphins. It was amazing and we so enjoyed just being out on the ocean soaking up all the sun too.
stacey is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 01:19 PM
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We have always used Maui Dive Shop because they take small groups out in faster boats from Kihei so they get to Molokini earlier than most of the other larger boats. By the time you are finished at Molokini and heading for Turtle Town, all the other boats are just arriving. They don't have party boats, but they provide a great trip. They also have numerous locations on Maui where you can rent equipment at reasonable rates.

The website is http://www.mauidiveshop.com/
bettyk is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 01:20 PM
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We used Paragon for our Molokini trip. There were only 13 or 14 of us..it was a great trip. Saw tons of whales (January) and turtles pretty close up. They had great equipment and the captain (whose name I cannot remember) was A LOT of fun. There were tons of fish at Molokini. We would use them again in a second.
kikahead is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 01:55 PM
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We're visiting the Hawaiian islands this summer (July 20-Aug 8) so I don't expect to see any whales. Does the time of year affect other sights for snorkeling (i.e dolphins, turtles)? Does anyone know?
dolciani is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 02:21 PM
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Actually, there are whales in Hawaii all year just not the humpback whales. Check out this website for info: http://www.pacificwhale.org/adventur...undcruise.html.
bettyk is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 05:46 PM
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The trip makes it fun.

http://www.maui-vacation.net/snorkelmap.html - spots one - five are the best!
islandmom is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 05:47 PM
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Better map - dive spots 1-4 http://www.adigitaldreamer.com/snorkel/maps.htm
islandmom is offline  
Jun 19th, 2003, 05:48 PM
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Note to snorkel people- shark's favorite food - turtle - use caution when following the turtles out.
islandmom is offline  
Jun 20th, 2003, 04:28 AM
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Reply to Dolciani, As I recall you are headed to the Big Island soon. When we were there in March "Place of Refuge", next to Honaunau Bay had many turtles hanging out there feeding on the rocks a few feet from shore and you could walk right up to them. From adjacent Honaunau Bay, I snorkeled with a turtle and giant moorish idols, but my wife had difficulty snorkeling here because the coast is all lava. You might want to get a pair of underwater gloves due to the presence of sea urchins on the rocks for snorkeling in A-Bay in front of the Outrigger Marriott and Honaunau Bay. Enjoy your stay in Paradise!
JohnD is offline  
Jun 20th, 2003, 09:41 AM
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Thanks JohnD, the gloves are a great suggestion - I've been scraped up by coral in the past, but hadn't heard about the "urchins" at Waikoloa. (You seem to know just everything!
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