Here on Maui, life revolves around the water. Thanks to the island’s colorful reefs and an abundance of marine life, tourists and locals alike head out to the ocean as soon as they step foot on the island.
Here are the best water-based activities to enjoy on Maui.
- Whale watching
Visit Maui in the winter months and get the chance to see these majestic creatures as they travel over 3,000 miles to the warm waters of Hawaii in search of the perfect environment for mating and giving birth. An endangered species, these humpback whales can grow up to 50 feet in length and weigh anywhere from 30 to 50 tons.
Whales begin arriving in the Maui waters in November, but official whale-watching season takes place from December to May. Be awed as these creatures breach the waves of the Pacific Ocean with their jaw-dropping acrobatics. Best of all, humpback whales can often be seen accompanied by spinner dolphins. Don’t miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Bring your binoculars and block out your schedule for a whale-watching session in Maui.
- Snorkeling and scuba diving
Put on your snorkeling mask and watch sea turtles, tropical fish, and sea anemone in their natural habitat. Hawaii’s crystal clear waters make it a world-class snorkeling destination.
Maui’s most talked about snorkeling beaches include:
- Kapalua Bay
- Honolua Bay
- Kaanapali Beach
- Turtle Town Maui/Maluaka Beach
- Ahihi Kinau Reserve
The island is also on the forefront of scuba diving in Hawaii – Maui is an underwater paradise with exquisite coral gardens and lava rock reef formations. Popular scuba diving locations include the Tako Flats on Molokini, Mala Wharf, Five Caves at Makena Landing, and the sunken vessel of the Carthaginian.
Maui is a great place to surf – its diverse topography makes surfing possible year round and gives you several surf break locations to choose from. Surfers of all skill levels will find an ideal surf spot here.
If you’re not ready to ride the waves, just find a spot on the beach and watch the pros conquer the ocean.
Charter a boat and go on a spectacular sunset cruise of the waters surrounding Maui. Hop on a vessel at historic Lahaina Harbor and set sail for the Auau Channel, which is situated between Maui, Molokai, and Lanai. Keep an eye out for humpback whales and spinner dolphins, which have been spotted in the channel. Watch the sun go down from the comfort of a luxurious yacht as you celebrate your engagement, wedding anniversary, and other special occasions.
Explore the island’s pristine beaches. Maui has over 120 miles of coastline where you’ll find white, red, and black sand beaches. Swim, sunbathe, snorkel, and paddle board. Go on a leisurely stroll along the shore and admire the island’s scenic beauty.
Hawaii is known for having excellent windsurfing spots, and Maui, in particular, is widely considered to be the epicenter for this sport. Perfect weather, ideal wind conditions, and an immaculate northern coastline make it the place to be for world-class windsurfing.
- Sport fishing
Go on a fishing tour of Maui – blue marlin, striped marlin, spearhead, mahi-mahi, and ahi swim in its waters. Fishing season is open throughout the year, which means you can reel in a great catch depending on the month, season, and game type.