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Molokini And Turtle Town Snorkeling Adventure

Red Line Rafting Maui Molokini Snorkel Tour

Maui Snorkeling Molokini & Turtle Town with Malalo 4K

Our boat was fast and it cut through the waves to provide a fairly smooth ride. Plus, its a smaller boat that carries only 24 people max, so it never really felt crowded on the boat or in the water.

On the way out to Molokini, they passed out the snorkel gear and we were served delicious cinnamon rolls, fresh fruit, and juice. Now this wasnt a whale watching tour, but I knew we were at the very beginning of whale watching season, and was so excited that we saw a whale breach right in front of the boat. Captain Seth drove around a bit, while telling us stories and sharing history about Molokini and the surrounding islands, to see if we could see any more whales before heading to Molokini and we did! We saw two more whales! It was a surprise and totally made our day!

Natalie was so amazed and totally speechless.

After that we headed over to the inside of Molokini Crater, a Marine Life Conservation District and Bird Sanctuary. We were one of the first boats to arrive. Unfortunately it was a cloudy, overcast day, and it rained off and on, so the visibility wasnt great and the colors werent bright. But with that said, its a fairly protected area and the snorkeling was pretty great! The kids saw lots of fish, anemones, different kids of coral, and even a couple moray eels.

Contents: Molokini And Turtle Town Snorkeling Guide

Over the years weve visited the island of Maui, weve enjoyed several Molokini snorkeling tours .

On our most recent trip, we went snorkeling at Molokini and Turtle Town with Alii Nui Maui.

If youre looking for the Mercedes experience, the Alii Nui is the most deluxe Molokini boat tour departing from Maalaea Harbor.

Hint: Lots of mimosas and champagne!

Well share all the delicious details about sailing on the Alii Nui catamaran.

But first, lets start by telling you a little more about Molokini and Turtle Town and what you can generally expect on a snorkeling tour.

Aloha And Welcome To The Malolo Molokini Snorkeling Tours

Dive into the backstory of Molokini, a volcanic formation, including its geology, mythology, history, and wildlife. How did that little islet get out there, and what is it made of? What are the details of the tragic, romantic legends surrounding the crater? Can you really find artifacts from World War II in the middle of the coral reef?

The answers to these questions and many more are now at your fingertips. Check out the Molokini Info tab to learn more. But, how do you get to the crater after you read about it? Well, no matter how well you can swim, Molokini is really only accessible by boat.

We will tell you about several boats that can bring you out there. The underwater visibility at the crater is incredible. The ocean adventure while voyaging there is so much fun. Plus, the sights youll see beneath the surface are unparalleled! Book your Molokini Crater adventure today!

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Maui Has A Variety Of Charismatic Creatures

Snorkeling with turtles in Maui

Maui is known for many things world-renowned beaches, humpback whale watching, delicious food, and unforgettable sunrises and sunsets. With so much to see and do, its easy for memorable destinations and experiences to pass right under your radar. Turtle town is Mauis number two snorkeling destination, right after Molokini Crater. Its a string of submerged rock formations that were created by ancient, underwater volcanoes. Today, the reefs along turtle town make the perfect habitat for green sea turtles.

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Molokini Snorkeling Reviews: Is Molokini Worth It

You might have read some disappointing reviews about Molokini Crater and turtle snorkel trips.

Its no secret that over the years, the worlds coral reefs have suffered from the effects of climate change and overuse.

Molokini is no exception.

Each morning, upward of a dozen Molokini snorkel boats anchor within the craters shallow inner cove.

Some 600 to 800 snorkelers may visit the crater at any one time. In 2019, a bill was passed to limit the number of tour boats visiting Molokini at the same time to 12, but the governor vetoed the bill.

Years ago, when we first went scuba diving at Molokini, the coral gardens were healthy and blooming. And the wide variety of colorful tropical fish were abundant we remember galaxies of fish! At least, thats what we think we remember.

Today, its the same crystal clear waters. And the same marvelous visibility.

But it would be a lie to say the reef is glorious. It doesnt have the same interesting coral formations or kaleidoscope of hues weve seen when diving in the Red Sea or the Caribbean. The colors are neutral .

And the fish arent as plentiful as before.

Does that mean you shouldnt book a Molokini snorkel tour? No.

Our latest Molokini snorkeling trip on the Alii Nui was wonderful. Look at all the creatures we still managed to spy!

For water babes like us, how could we not have an incredible time snorkeling on Maui!

Expectations and weather conditions will influence your experience.

Calypso Molokini & Turtle Town Tour

The Calypso Maui is a three-deck, motorized catamaran that has a design that allows it to smoothly cut through the ocean waves. And having three decks yields tremendous benefits for passengers, as they get a far better view than they would if they were stuck down at ocean level. And if youre at the top of the boat and want to get to the lower level quickly, you can always use one of the two waterslides that are attached to the boat.

While on the first floor, you get the benefit of several glass panels which will allow you to have a clear view of the beautiful sea life below. So, whether youre hoping to watch dolphins or want a view of the ocean floor before you dive, the Calypso is a great option. When you ride the Calypso to turtle town Maui, youll leave from Maalaea Harbor and be able to enjoy a continental breakfast while you ride. Once you get to your destination, youll be instructed by the crew on how to use your snorkeling equipment as well as how to make the most of your dive.

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Awesome Snorkeling Tour Of Molokini Crater & Turtle Town

Join us on our awesome Molokini and Turtle Town snorkeling adventure aboard Malolo. Malolo is a 55 foot comfortable, stable catamaran. She is equipped with easy access stairways into the water on both the front and rear of the boat. There is also 2 restrooms, trampolines to lay out on and a friendly, experienced captain and crew. A continental Breakfast and deli lunch are both included as is all your snorkeling gear. We also have flotation devices such as foam noodles, body boards and float vests for your use. Optional westsuits and high quality 16 mega pixel Olympus underwater digital cameras are available to rent.

Imagine swimming in a sunken volcano that teems with thousands of fish, while splashing in crystal clear water. On this Molokini snorkeling tour, cruise out to the crater, before jumping in the crystalline waters and scouring the colorful reef. Make a second stop dependent upon conditions, and search for turtles at Turtle Town or a spot named Coral Gardens. This family-friendly Maui activity is one of the islands most popular, and an unforgettable day of exploring the underwater world.

  • What’s Included
  • Professional, friendly, safety oriented, experienced captain and crew
  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Hot coffee, tea, ice cold soda, juice, and water
  • Use of Snorkelling equipment
  • Easy stairway in and out of the water
  • Shady cabin
  • Great informative and historical narrative
  • More Information
  • Operates in most weather conditions, please dress appropriately
  • Swim In A Submerged Volcanic Caldera

    The BEST Snorkeling Trip in Hawaii: Molokini Crater & Turtle Town

    Once you have been, it is easy to understand why snorkeling Molokini has become the number one snorkeling destination in the Hawaiian Islands. Molokini offers exceptionally clear water with visibility reliably in excess of 100 feet. Molokini snorkeling is truly a unique experience, as there are only three submerged volcanic calderas, including Molokini Crater, in the entire world. In this offshore marine sanctuary, sparkling waters are just the beginning of an experience you will not soon forget.

    Beginner snorkeling in Maui is the perfect introduction to this new world of color, texture, and motion. Maui snorkeling is particularly well suited for the novice because the water is so frequently clear, calm, shallow, and full of life.

    Experienced snorkelers will appreciate the snorkel sites we visit, where drop-offs, ledges, overhangs, a wide variety of fish and larger marine animals can also be viewed.


    • Sunglasses
    • Camera
    • Perhaps Some Extra Cash
    • For very young children, we suggest that you might want to bring a swim vest that your child feels comfortable wearing.
    • For those over 21 years of age, a PICTURE ID is required if you would like to be served alcoholic beverages from the bar.

    If you have your own snorkel gear, and feel more comfortable with it, you are welcome to bring it! However, we do provide sanitized, quality snorkel gear and flotation devices free of charge.

    Underwater Camera rentals are available for purchase.

    Special Instructions

    Molokini Crater

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    Turtle Town And Molokini Crater Snorkeling Tours: What To Expect

    Are you getting excited?

    Several tour companies offer Molokini Crater tours that combine snorkeling Molokini Island with one of the Turtle Town snorkel sites.

    While a few boats leave from Lahaina Harbor, most Molokini boat tours leave from Maalaea Harbor on the south coast of Maui. The total excursion time is about 5 to 6 hours.

    The departure time from Maalaea Harbor is usually early in the morning, around 6:30 or 7:00 am.

    Yes, thats early and its hard to wake up early on holiday!

    But, as with all the Hawaiian islands, early morning is the best time for snorkeling. Thats when the water is the most calm and clear. By mid-morning, the trade winds usually start to pick up, the water gets choppier and visibility isnt as good.

    It takes about an hour from Maalaea Harbor to reach Molokini.

    In general, most tours include about 45 minutes of snorkeling in Molokini Crater.

    After your Molokini stop, your boat will cruise or sail to one of the Turtle Towns for a second snorkeling stop. You usually get to enjoy another 30 to 45 minutes in the water to snorkel with the sea turtles.

    Tip: Plan your Molokini snorkel cruise for early in your holiday.

    Assuming youve flown west from the U.S. or Canada to Hawaii, your internal body clock will have you waking up early in Maui when you first arrive so you might as well take advantage of this!

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    Maui Snuba Diving With The Pride Of Maui

    The Pride of Maui SNUBA program is well established, with a 20-year history of caring service, where tens of thousands of our guests have safely experienced Maui SNUBA. We pride ourselves in providing an unprecedented experience, for even the timidest landlubber, aboard Mauis comfortable maxi-power catamaran Pride, renowned for her highly successful and sought-after Maui SNUBA program.

    We provide you with state-of-the-art SNUBA equipment, expert SNUBA instruction, and an opportunity to experience extraordinary SNUBA adventure aboard our spacious high-class vessel. Treat yourself to a Maui SNUBA adventure in the pristine Maui waters. After all, this is YOUR Maui vacation, and you have earned it!

    Questions About The Tour

    Molokini and Turtle Town Snorkeling Adventure

    Whats the difference between this and the morning snorkel?

    Our Turtle Watch Snorkel Adventure is a shorter trip that runs from 1:30 pm-4:30 pm and takes you out to one snorkel location of captains choice based on the weather conditions. We typically head out to either Turtle Town, Olowalu, Coral Gardens, and sometimes make it out to Molokini Crater. On this trip, well provide you with a hot BBQ Lunch, open bar, all of your snorkel gear and flotation devices.

    Where do you snorkel?

    Turtle Town, Olowalu, Molokini or Coral Gardens Captain will pick the best spot based on the weather/water conditions for that day.

    How long is this tour?

    3 hrs from 1:30 PM-4:30 PM

    Is lunch included?

    Yes, we serve a hot-off-the-grill BBQ lunch featuring hamburgers, hot dogs, & marinated chicken breasts) served with all the fixings along with pasta salad and a vegetable crudité platter. If you have vegetarians or vegans in your party, please give us a call on our customer service line at 808.242.0955, at least 72 hours in advance.

    Is alcohol included?

    Yes, once snorkeling has come to a close we offer an open bar

    What time is food served?

    After snorkeling is done about 3:00 pm.

    Is it windier in the afternoon?

    Are we going to Molokini?

    If weather permits well try our best to make it out to Molokini Crater but ultimately its up to our Captain and what the weather conditions are like. Our number one priority is our guests safety.

    Why doesnt it go to Molokini?

    Onboard amenities

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    Other Great Turtle Town And Molokini Snorkeling Trips

    For a tour thats less expensive than the Alii Nui and Kai Kanani, this highly-rated Molokini and Turtle Town snorkel tour aboard the 55-foot Malolo catamaran includes the two snorkeling stops, a continental breakfast and deli lunch.

    The Pacific Whale Foundation also offers good tours with a BBQ lunch onboard. Each trip is led by a marine naturalist, and profits support the foundations whale conservation efforts.

    Turtle Town Is An Amazing Snorkeling Destination Off The South Coast Of Maui

    Here, sea turtles spend time resting, feeding, and gliding through turquoise waters. You are almost guaranteed to see at least one of these fascinating creatures while snorkeling through Turtle Town.

    Five types of sea turtles live around Maui. The one youre most likely to encounter while snorkeling is the Hawaiian green sea turtle. If you ever happen to see a hawksbill the second most abundant, and an endangered species, you are extremely lucky. Make sure to tell your boat crewits a big deal!

    Green sea turtles hang out all around Turtle Town, which is located in a beautiful patch of ocean near Makena. The healthy and expansive coral reef there is a perfect place for the turtles to graze. They can also find all kinds of places to rest on the bottom. Be sure to consider the shape of a turtle as you float above the reef. Sometimes you will see just one back flipper sticking out from under the coral, and it can look like a large leaf.

    As you watch all the incredible turtles at Turtle Town, it may be tempting to reach out and touch them, but please be so kind as to not do so. Not only will your kindness respect the turtles space and need to breathe at the surface, but it will avoid your being fined for harassing a threatened species. Do make sure to bring an underwater camera, however. Youll be able to take some of your amazing Turtle Town memories home with you!

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    Tour Details For The Alii Nui Catamaran Maui:

    This 6-hour luxury Molokini Island snorkel tour includes:

    • Snorkeling Molokini and Turtle Town
    • The use of good quality snorkel equipment
    • Hot breakfast, mid-morning snacks and a hot lunch
    • Free bubbly, soft drinks and an open bar
    • Complimentary use of warm towels on the boat, with clean dry ones offered in between snorkeling too
    • Complimentary sunscreen
    • Hot fresh water shower
    • Complimentary transfers to and from your hotel

    Theres the option to go huka diving at Molokini instead of snorkeling on this tour. Huka diving involves breathing through a regulator attached to a long hose, which supplies air from a surface device.

    See the Alii Nui Maui website for more details and to book.

    A Message From The Ceo

    Maui Small-Group Molokini Snorkel and Green Sea Turtle Adventure from Maui

    I am proud to announce that we are the first passenger tour company limiting the guests we serve to 60% of our US Coast Guard capacity to support sustainable tourism and elevate your ocean adventure. With this new business model, we continue to build on 40 years of unsurpassed guest service, inspired by a renewed commitment to enhancing your time with us.

    On behalf of our crew and employees, we thank our repeat Ohana for your support and look forward to serving you soon.

    • Maui Brewing Co. Big Swell
    • Regional Wines

    Make sure to bring your ID to check in so you can enjoy our awesome open bar. We provide an array of liquors, ice-cold micro-brews, and the best Mai Tais on the Pacific! We also have a range of non-alcohol cocktails, sodas, juices, and fresh ginger drinks .

    If you have vegetarians, vegans, or guests with dietary needs in your group, please call our customer service line at 808.242.0955 at least 72 hours in advance. Mahalo!


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