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Maui, Hawaii: Top 8 Snorkeling Beaches

Updated: Apr 5


Top Snorkel Spots of Maui Hawaii

Top 8 Snorkeling Beaches in Maui Hawaii:


Headed to Maui for surf and sand? How about to witness the beauty below sea level? There are many beautiful and secluded beaches on Maui that make for ideal snorkeling. However, one of the biggest factors in finding good snorkeling is going during low tide when the waters are calm and fish scavenging. Check the daily tides near your location on Maui to determine an ideal time for snorkeling, however, low tide will generally be early morning and late afternoon. To avoid swimming in the dark, your best bet is to go early in the morning. This is certainly one of those cases where the early bird gets the worm!


If you are a beginner, we highly recommend researching more about the best conditions for snorkeling in Hawaii, techniques, and safety conditions before heading to any of our below recommendations.


For more tips, borrow from your local library: Maui Revealed: The Ultimate Guidebook by Andrew Doughty



1. Kapalua Beach


Located in Kalapua on the west side of Maui is the secluded bay of Kapalua Beach. This was our #1 choice for snorkeling on Maui due to the calm waters, magnificent coral reefs, and abundance of sea turtles. Start your day snorkeling at Kapalua Beach and then continue north on the Kapalua Coastal Trail, one of our recommended top things to do on Maui.


J&L Recommended: Great for beginners!


Top Snorkel Spots of Maui Hawaii

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2. Honolua Bay Access Trail


When conditions are right with calm waters, Honolua Bay offers great snorkeling. So great, that tour companies drop off paying customers to snorkel in this exact location.


Tip: Save yourself a $100 snorkeling tour, park at Honolua Park, and hike the short Honolua Bay Access Trail to this desirable snorkeling bay!



Top Snorkel Spots of Maui Hawaii

Maui, Hawaii: Top 8 Snorkeling Beaches

3. Maluaka Beach


Looking for sea turtles? This secluded beach is near one of the famous "turtle towns" that boats take paying tourist to snorkel. The south side of the beach has great snorkeling with coral and turtles. Head to the end of Maluaka Beach South Access Parking for ample parking and a quick walk to the south side of the beach.


Tip: Never approach any wildlife when snorkeling. Allow them their space and let them approach you.


Top Snorkel Spots of Maui Hawaii

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4. Kahekili Beach Park


Located on the west side of Maui in Lahaina, Kahekili Beach Park provides great opportunities for snorkeling under the right conditions. The best snorkeling is located directly in front of the main pavilion where there are a variety of coral and fish roughly 75 feet out into the water.




Top Snorkel Spots of Maui Hawaii

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5. Palauea Beach


Located on the south side of Maui in Wailea, Palauea Beach is a secluded beach that can be accessed via a short trail off of Makena Rd. There is minimal street parking on Makena Rd so get here early and during low tide (prime snorkeling conditions) to have the best experience. Snorkeling on the southern side of the beach close to the rocky point is the best area to snorkel on Palauea Beach.



Top Snorkel Spots of Maui Hawaii

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6. Kanahena Cove (aka Fish Bowl)


Located on the south side of Maui, Kanahena Cove parking is located within the Ahihi Kinau Natural Reserve and requires a small fee. There is a short path that leads to the cove with signage directing you where you should and should not snorkel along the cove. The beach area is all rocks, therefore, coming here should be for the purpose of snorkeling and not laying out in the sun.


J&L Recommended: Stop here in the morning on your way to the Lava Fields, one of our top things to do in Maui



Top Snorkel Spots of Maui Hawaii

7. Five Graves