Honolua Bay

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Address Between the 32 and 33 mile marker, Lahaina, HI 96761
Great for snorkeling in the calm and clear water but there is no sand here so don't expect a great beach.

• Type: Shady • Parking: Poor / Few • Parking: Street only • Good For: Snorkeling

Honolua Bay is a conservation area and with it's clear and calm waters, it's a great and very popular place to go snorkeling. In fact, many tour boats will come here to let their guests snorkel but you can drive here and do it for free! You'll find the bay along the northwest part of Maui, just a bit north of D.T. Fleming Beach Park and Slaughterhouse Beach (Mokuleia Bay).

Because it is a conservation area you cannot use any sunscreens on your body when swimming here as that can kill the creatures that live in the water. So this is one of those times you shouldn't put on sunscreen which means you should really limit your sun exposure and especially avoid going midday when the sun is the strongest.

Or, make sure to use a "reef safe sunscreen" to Protect Yourself From Sunburn & Skin Cancer. Another option is to wear a long sleeve rash guard #ad or other t-shirt for sun protection.

Once parked you have a short and easy five minute hike ahead of you. The hike is pretty neat and you'll likely spot some wild chickens along the way. It's actually a good and very short hike that little kids might enjoy. There is a sign warning you of falling branches and coconuts and it's not a joke as I watched a large branch fall about 10 feet off the path.

At the water line it's all rocks and no sand so getting into the water might be a little tricky and slippery. As always, keep in mind that the snorkeling will only be good when the ocean is calm and water is clear (you'll even see a sign reminding you of that along the way). If the ocean is angry, stay out.

To get here, follow the map above to our pinpoint and then see our picture that shows where you need to park (which is right off the Honoapiilani Highway). There are actually two parking areas, the second one you come to (as heading north) is larger. Of course, neither area is actually very large so you'll find many people making their own spots on the sides of the road all along this area if it is busy.