Home #WHERETONEXT USA How to Have an Unforgettable Time Snorkeling in Maui

How to Have an Unforgettable Time Snorkeling in Maui

Woman with mask snorkeling in clear water

You don’t need to be a strong swimmer to go snorkeling in Maui. Not only is snorkeling more about floating than swimming, but the waters around most of Maui are relatively calm. 

Yes, there are a few beaches where the waves attract surfing pros, but there are plenty of places where the waves are merely ripples on the water. 

However, before you start looking at the unique snorkeling tours in Maui there are a few things to consider. These can apply to first-timers and those who frequently dive into Maui’s warm waters.

Tips on Having the Best Snorkeling Adventure in Maui

Okay, you’ve got your gear, which isn’t much. All you need are a pair of fins, a face mask, and your enthusiasm. Your fins and mask are in great condition, and everything fits like a glove. So, what else do you need to know?

Check Maui’s Ocean Report

The weather in Maui is usually glorious—you know, plenty of sunshine and a light tropical breeze. You really can’t ask for any better weather for snorkeling. 

The local weather report is a good place to start. You can get information on the day’s weather forecast, ocean temperature, and even the current. However, did you know that Maui also has a snorkel report? Yes, there’s a report geared just for divers and snorkelers. 

While knowing the outside temperature is helpful, you need a few more details, and this is when the snorkel report comes in handy. The report doesn’t just give you a broad overview of the island’s conditions, it also gets area-specific. 

Find the beach you’re planning on setting off from or your destination. From there, you can make plans accordingly.

Bring Along a Flotation Device

Okay, a flotation device may seem like you’re being a little overly cautious. However, the trade winds can kick up seemingly without warning. The snorkel report will give you some insight but things can change quickly out on the water,  and this is true even if you’re snorkeling a few feet away from the beach.

Your flotation device doesn’t have to be a giant raft or even an inner tube. Some arm floaties will work perfectly fine. While strong swimmers with ocean experience may be able to safely forego a flotation device, all children should have something to help them stay above water.

While you should always snorkel with a group or at least a buddy, if you suddenly find yourself alone, the flotation device may turn out to be a lifesaver if something happens. Even strong swimmers can run into issues like muscle cramps.

Forget About Breathing Through Your Nose

When you’re snorkeling, it’s a good idea to forget you have a nose. Trying to breathe through your nose is a common mistake beginners make. Not only can it be painful since there’s very little air in your mask, but it can also send you into a panic.

There’s a handy tube attached to your mask, it’s called a snorkel: this is your breathing tube. One end goes in your mouth, and the other end stays above water. This is how you breathe when snorkeling. 

A quick tip: don’t get the snorkel underneath the water. If you do, the next breath you take will be full of water. 

If water does get into the snorkel, remove your mask, drain the tube, and take a breath before putting the mask back on.

Try Not to Look Straight Down

The water around Maui is crystal clear and it’s hard to not try to see down to the bottom. However, while you’re snorkeling try to look straight ahead and not down. The reason for this simply comes down to safety. Maui’s waters can get a little crowded. You need to watch out for other snorkelers, kayakers, swimmers, and even cruise boats.

You also need to be on the lookout for shallow reefs and sharp rocks. If you’re looking down, there’s a good chance of swimming into something or someone.

Don’t Try to Race Other Snorkelers

Snorkeling isn’t a race, no matter what your friends or siblings claim. Snorkeling is more about floating and relaxing than swimming. 

Sure, you kick your legs a little to propel yourself forward or change direction, but otherwise you’re lazily floating along. Enjoy this feeling of utter peace. Besides, if you’re trying to see who’s the fastest at snorkeling there’s a good chance you’re going to miss out on seeing some amazing sights.

Maui and the Hawaiian Islands are home to over 1,500 aquatic species, so you don’t want to miss a single sight.

Fins Go On in the Water

Yes, everyone’s probably seen commercials or characters in movies running on the beach in their fins. This is something you don’t want to try. 

Yes, you can walk on land wearing flippers, but it’s a constant struggle to try to do. By the time you cross the beach, there’s a good chance you’ll be too exhausted to hit the water.

If you’re snorkeling from the beach, get into the shallows before slipping on your fins. For boat excursions, sit at the edge or on the ladder to put your fins on. You can even slip the fins on after getting into the water. Just have someone on the boat toss them to you. 

Don’t worry, your flippers will float. The only hard part is bending down to put them on. If you’re not an experienced snorkeler or aren’t very flexible, it’s best to put them on before diving into the water.

Take a Snorkel Tour

There’s nothing wrong with grabbing a buddy and going off on a snorkeling adventure. However, there’s something to be said about booking an excursion. 

Your guide knows the best place around Maui for snorkeling, including a few hidden gems not listed in the guidebooks.

The excursion may even give you the chance to see some whales or snorkel with the sea turtles. Some snorkeling excursions even provide food and beverages so you can grab a bite after spending the afternoon in the water.

Maui is a great place for snorkeling and you can easily have the time of your life, just remember to check the weather forecast and follow these simple tips.