It’s true. I’m kind of in love with Hawaii, and secretly plan return trips back to the islands on a regular basis. (I will get there again soon, I promise you that!) My time in Maui and Kauai were spent both on the water and under the water, and considering Hawaii has some of the most gorgeous warm waters I’ve laid eyes, it just felt natural to share some exhilarating experiences.
You can’t leave Hawaii without snorkeling at the famous Molokini Crater. Considering it’s one of only three volcanic calderas in the world, Molokini is kind of a big deal. Here you can swim with thousands of fish and marine animals. The water is surprisingly clear, and its not uncommon for visibility to be 150 feet. Molokini is made of all rock, so therefore, there is no debris from soil to wash into the water.
Nearby “Turtle Town” is also a must-see spot, and it’s where I snorkeled with sea turtles for the first time.
Nervous about scuba diving but still want to experience the deep depths of the ocean? Snuba may be just the answer. What is snuba you ask? It stands for Surface Nexus Underwater Breathing Apparatus, and in more simple terms, is basically a hybrid of snorkeling and scuba diving. You breathe through a regulator (no tank attached to your back), and can swim up to 20 feet below the ocean’s surface! Don’t fret- the regulator is attached to a tank that is floating on a raft. This is so great because you leave most of the heavy gear up above!
What better way to explore the islands then from a kayak? If you don’t feel like getting super wet, hop in a kayak and start paddling! There’s nothing better than sitting in your own little boat while viewing the palm trees and mountains from the water.
4) Stand Up Paddling
It’s true – I tried stand up paddling in Maui and failed. Miserably. Injuries and all. (Yes, I was that girl who got hit in the face with the board.) With that being said, I’d do it all over again. The rush you feel when standing on the board (without falling off) for the first time is like no other. The water is a bit rough, with waves and all, but hey, it’s the Pacific – what do you expect?
I have a slight feeling that stand up padding in the calm, gentle waters of Bora Bora would have been a tad bit easier.
Ever since my near-death experience while SUP-ing, I haven’t been on a board since. I have friends who’ve taken up surfing and swear by it, so what better place to learn than in Hawaii? If you have balance and some time before your next sunset hula, you really have no excuse.
6) Sunset Cruise
Promise me you won’t leave Hawaii without watching a few sunsets. They are absolutely phenomenal on this side of the world, and are best viewed with a mai tai in hand. 🙂 One of my favorite thing during our few weeks in this little slice of paradise was watching the sun dip below the horizon from a sunset cocktail cruise.