Hanauma Bay

January 24, 2019

Snorkeling at Hanauma Bay was amazing! I would 10/10 recommend this, especially if you can go on a day that won’t be as crowded (weekday, early morning, off-season). I went with Ben & Buffy and their two kids, Lulu and Alexander; and with Krissy & Troy and their five kids, Eli, Cassidy, Sabrina, Elisabeth, and Brecca. Abe needed to work during that time, and he kept Stella with him at our home base (thank you Abe !!!)

We wanted to go early, but ended up leaving mid-morning. Parking can be competitive but it wasn’t an issue for us— it was a Monday in January and it was overcast. There’s a fee to snorkel here since it is a Nature Preserve, and you have to watch an educational video before you head down to the beach. But it is 100% worth it! It’s pretty interesting to hear about the history of Hanauma Bay (fishing grounds for Royal Hawaiian families!) and how to help preserve the reef.

We got lucky with the weather and some light rain came but then disappeared and it was a sunny day with just a few clouds! We stayed in pairs to snorkel and first Sabrina and I went out. You can’t swim 5 seconds without seeing bright and colorful fish! This is why I highly recommend coming here, it is so rewarding to go out and snorkel and immediately see all of these fish!


  • Sunscreen

    • Especially* on the back of your legs (and everywhere else!) and reapply every time you get out of the water. I needed to re-apply on my face more because I was taking my goggles on and off so much.
  • Go early to get parking

    • I think being able to go when it wasn’t as busy was great for us, but I think it would still be worth it even if it is busy.
  • Pack a lunch

    • You’ll probably want to spend more time here than planned! I would set aside a whole day for this, pending ages of kids/need for naps.
  • Get some of the fog free drops for your goggles

    • A kind random lady overheard us talking about clearing our goggles all the time and offered her fog free goggle drops and they really helped!

I didn’t take many pictures from this day but took a lot of videos! Watch to see some bright and colorful fish! My two favorite were the Humuhumunukunukuapua’a (Hawaii’s state fish) and the Rainbow fish (we saw some really BIG rainbow fish and it was amazing). No turtles this time though, maybe next time we visit Hanauma Bay!

Thanks for reading!


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