thumb image

5 Oahu Snorkeling Spots to Try on Your Next Vacation

Oahu snorkeling spots offer everything you could want from the Hawaiian diving experience: clear waters, pristine beaches, and exotic fish.

Oahu has some of the most unique and beautiful snorkeling spots of all the islands. Whether you take a guided Oahu snorkeling tour or explore on your own, make sure you dive into these waters at least once during your next vacation.

Here are 5 of the best Oahu snorkeling spots to check out on your next Hawaiian vacation:

1 – Hanauma Bay

Possibly the most famous snorkeling spot in all of Hawaii, Hanauma Bay is known for its calm waters and the huge variety of colorful fish that inhabit this cove. You won’t find a more picture-perfect snorkeling experience anywhere else.

A couple of things to keep in mind: because Hanauma Bay is so famous, it gets a large number of visitors, so expect crowds. Due to environmental concerns, the amount of visitors allowed per day has been limited to 3,000 people per day.

Try to arrive early, and also remember that it is closed on Tuesdays to further reduce environmental impact. Be prepared to pay a small fee for entry and watch a video about preservation before being allowed into the park.

Once you see the incredible amount and variety of fish the Bay has to offer, though, it will all be worth it.

2 – Kaena Point State Park

If Hanauma Bay sounds too crowded for you, you might like the more relaxed Kaena State Park. This hidden gem might be Oahu’s best-kept secret.

Even at peak snorkeling seasons, you’ll hardly ever find any crowds, and you’ll have plenty of room to spread your towel on the beach’s pale, smooth sands.

Sure, the fish might not be as spectacular as somewhere like Hanauma bay, but they’re still pretty great, and you can’t beat the peace and quiet.

3 – Kuilima Cove

Kuilima Cove, on the North Shore, is one of the best spots for beginning snorkelers, especially children. Thanks to a natural rock barrier, the water is virtually wave-free, and the coral reefs offer plenty of exciting fish to see.

It’s a great, safe place for families to get their kids excited about snorkeling.

4 – Kahe Point Beach Park

This spot on West Oahu is another hidden gem. Kahe Point Beach Park’s water is crystal clear and extra warm because of discharge from a nearby power plant…but don’t worry, it’s completely safe.

The warm water means you’ll have a relaxing swim. Also, fish flock to this area, so you’ll see plenty of exotic swimmers.

Hawaiian spinner dolphins have been known to be seen offshore here, so keep your eyes peeled.

5 – Makaha Beach State Park

A favorite of the locals, Makaha beach is another beautiful beach on Oahu’s west coast. You’ll love the calm, blue waters, which house a beautiful reef that has huge, elaborate underwater caverns that are just waiting to be explored.

It’s is perfect for catching a glimpse of the usual suspects like fish and sea turtles, plus more exotic finds like octopi, eels, and manta rays. And there are some great natural caverns on land to check out after you’re done snorkeling.


Want more info on Oahu snorkeling spots? Visit Hawaii Discount’s travel blog for the best tips and advice on Oahu travel.

Hawaii Discount offers the internet’s best selection of Oahu tours, Oahu travel packages, and Oahu vacation activities.

To find out what tours are available, visit HawaiiDiscount.com today.