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Kailua-Kona

Snorkeling

  • Water activities

Our most recommended Kailua-Kona Snorkeling

Big Island: Eco-Friendly Twilight Manta Ray Adventure

1. Big Island: Eco-Friendly Twilight Manta Ray Adventure

Experience an exciting 75-minute nighttime snorkeling expedition. Get up close and personal with stunning manta rays as they gracefully soar through the water. Your underwater adventure will take place in clear warm waters near protected reefs abundant with marine life.   After the sun sets, head off into the nighttime waters to see a fascinating "manta ray ballet" along the Kona coast near the mouth of Keauhou Bay. This point of departure is one of the island’s most successful and consistent manta ray viewing locations. Your snorkeling guide will outfit you with all the necessary gear needed to embark on your experience including snorkel gear, wetsuits, and flotation devices. After a quick safety briefing, plunge into the dark waters and be captivated by these graceful creatures as they feast on plankton. Grip onto the flotation swim ring with high-illumination blue water lights that attract the plankton on which the mantas feed. Soon afterward, rays will glide through the water almost at arm's length opening their enormous mouths to feast. After your remarkable underwater adventure, return to your boat and warm up with a nighttime snack of hot chocolate and cookies

Big Island: Eco-Friendly Snorkeling Experience and BBQ

2. Big Island: Eco-Friendly Snorkeling Experience and BBQ

You will need to arrive at 7:30 AM for your 8 AM departure and cruise through protected marine sanctuaries. Cruise ten miles down the Kona Coast to the snorkel destination, a protected marine sanctuary. Relax, you will have over two hours of water time to enjoy the marine life, underwater topography, and coral reef. Cruise in comfort! The boat’s main lower deck features a large shaded cabin with cushioned seating, tables, a premium bar, three restrooms, and freshwater showers. You won’t go hungry. Enjoy a light breakfast of tropical fruits, assorted pastries, bagels, juices, teas, and Kona coffee. While you're taking in the fun, the crew prepares lunch. After snorkeling, belly up to a full-service premium cash bar, featuring a large selection of liquors, mixes, and local brews. This boat hosts one of the only blenders on the Kona Coast. Your mask, fins, snorkel, and prescription masks will be provided to you. For beginners, a friendly “Snorkel 101 Class” is available from the lifeguard-trained crew. A host of flotation toys, including noodles, vests, inner tubes, and even “Sea View Boards” for those who don’t want to get their face wet. They even include the use of stand-up paddleboards and an array of other flotation devices at no additional cost. Kids of all ages love the 20’ waterslide and high dive platform. If you want to kick back and do nothing, check out the floating “relaxation station”, the crew will swim you out refreshments. Wetsuits are available for rent on board.

Hawaii: Afternoon Snorkeling Sail to Captain Cook's Monument

3. Hawaii: Afternoon Snorkeling Sail to Captain Cook's Monument

Set sail along the beautiful Kona coast on a 3-hour snorkeling trip. At historic Kealakekua Bay, you’ll see the Captain Cook Monument. Snorkel in pristine waters along the reef in the marine sanctuary. With your marine camera, take photos of the colorful fish, pods of spinner dolphins, and the landscaped ledges of ancient lava flows. Enjoy site briefings and snorkeling tips from the crew members. Life jackets, floatation noodles, viewfinder boards, masks, fins, and snorkels are all provided. The crew will help you enter and exit the water if needed and will provide fish identification cards. They will even take you on a guided snorkeling tour.

Kona: Afternoon Catamaran Cruise with Snorkel and Snacks

4. Kona: Afternoon Catamaran Cruise with Snorkel and Snacks

Embark on a snorkeling adventure on a catamaran cruise out of Kona, Hawai'i. Marvel at the brilliant underwater world surrounding the coastline as you swim and snorkel in blue waters. Sit back and relax on the cruise, feeling the salty breeze and the sun on your skin. Head out from downtown Kailua Kona Pier on Hawai'i's west coast. Marvel at the coastline's diverse landscape, from black lava flows to lush mountain scenes. See pristine white sand beaches from the water and enjoy the vastness of the Pacific Ocean going on for miles. Once the catamaran has stopped, embark on your underwater snorkeling adventure. Use the wide steps to enter the water calmly, jump from the 15' high platform, or glide down the 20' waterslide for a more thrilling entry to the ocean. Once you've enjoyed snorkeling, try out a stand up paddle board or simply lounge onboard under the sun or in the shade, sipping on cool drinks and tucking into light snacks. Then head back to your starting point.

Big Island: South Kona Snorkeling and Coastline Exploration

5. Big Island: South Kona Snorkeling and Coastline Exploration

Prepare for a thrilling day exploring 3 unique snorkeling locations in South Kona with time to take a break from swimming for lunch with breathtaking views. Begin your snorkeling adventure by heading to the turquoise waters and vibrant reef of the 315-acre marine sanctuary of Kealakekua Bay, with your crew members highlighting interesting sights along the way. Once there, experience a vibrant reef filled with coral and schools of tropical fish. On occasion, even catch glimpses of spinner dolphins swimming nearby. After snorkeling, savor a gourmet deli lunch in the shade of the canopy with the monument to Captain Cook as a backdrop and the cliffs of the bay soaring above you. Next, jet off to a new location with visually spectacular snorkeling opportunities and cultural significance, Pu’uhonua O Honaunau, the “Place of Refuge.” Beautiful Honaunau Bay is fronted by large, smooth, and lava rock flats and fascinating gardens of coral.  For your third snorkeling stop, let your expert captain transport you a location that even island locals have yet to see. At this remote location, snorkel at a remote black sand beach, marvel at a stone arch, or maybe admire a spectacular lava rock formation created thousands of years ago. Explore sea caves and lava tubes in a safe, exciting, and maneuverable vessel designed to get you up close and personal with the coast. Rest assured that the local operator is proudly part of the Hawaii Ecotourism Association and seeks to create a culture protecting and promoting healthy oceans through many sustainability efforts.

Honokohau: Kona Snorkel and Sail with Drinks and Snacks

6. Honokohau: Kona Snorkel and Sail with Drinks and Snacks

Head to the meeting point and step aboard a stunning 53-foot catamaran. Be greeted by the friendly captain and crew, then set off along the scenic Kona coastline.  Soak up stunning views of the shore and the ocean, and look out for dolphins, green sea turtles, and seasonal whales (December to April). Enjoy a stop to cool off in the crystal clear water, and go snorkeling in search of colorful fish and fascinating coral reef. Back onboard, enjoy a refreshing alcoholic drink and some tasty snacks. 

Big Island: Kona Half-Day Boat Tour with Snorkeling & Lunch

7. Big Island: Kona Half-Day Boat Tour with Snorkeling & Lunch

Embark on a half-day boat tour of the Big Island's Kona Coast to enjoy ultimate scenic views and two gorgeous snorkel destinations. Round off your experience with lunch served on board along with a variety of drinks and snacks. Board a top-of-the-line rigid hull inflatable boat at the historic Keauhou Bay and head south for two snorkeling stops. Swim through the clear Hawaiian waters at Puʻuhonua O Honaunau, where you'll spot coral, all types of sea life, and perhaps a few turtles. Back on the boat, enjoy tropical fruit, chips, and cookies before continuing on to Kealakekua Bay for more snorkeling and the chance to observe more fish and a unique coral reef. When you are ready to re-board the boat, savor a delicious deli-style sandwich as well as more snacks and beverages for your lunch. Sit back as your knowledgeable captain and crew point out interesting geological features and keep you entertained with fun facts about the history of Kona Coast. On your way back toward Keauhou Bay, explore ancient lava tubes and sea caves that are unique to the Big Island.

Frequently asked questions about Kailua-Kona Snorkeling

What are other things to do than Snorkeling that are worth visiting in Kailua-Kona?

The other unmissable things to do in Kailua-Kona are:

Other Sightseeing Options in Kailua-Kona

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What people are saying about Kailua-Kona

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 91 reviews

Absolutely amazing! It was beyond anything that I expected. The manta rays are super sweet but they get super close. It’s not for someone who does not want to come within inches of them (you’re NOT allowed to touch them, but they can some say “aloha” to you)

AMAZING! Bucket list activity. Often you see pictures of an excursion which are taken in the best case scenario. The pictures are EXACTLY how we experienced it.

Swimming with these gentle giants was a very cool experience. They come up and rub up against you while they feed on the plankton.

A unique experience operated by great guides who love the ocean. Worth every penny!

Excellent crew, beautiful scenery, amazing snorkeling