Snorkeling in Oahu

Oahu is a beautiful volcanic island, containing magnificent shorelines as well as spectacular aquariums. This place is blessed with impressive sea creatures and breathtaking coral reefs! Obviously, diving and snorkeling are a must do activity in Oahu! However, there are several popular snorkeling spots and tours to choose from, which can be a little overwhelming. Therefore, if you go to Hawaii, you should have a look at the best snorkeling tours in Oahu so you can have the most enjoyable time!


1# Hanauma Bay Snorkeling Adventure Half-Day Tour

Hanauma Bay snorkeling spot

Hanauma Bay is located on the southeast of Oahu island. It is one of the most popular snorkeling places in Hawaii. This beautiful island was once a volcanic crater. Today, it became a protected marine life conservation.

Hanauma Bay is blessed with beautiful coral reefs and incredible sea creatures. Snorkeling in this bay is a real dream! You will discover about 400 species of outstanding colored fishes as well as a plethora of Green Sea Turtles and Parrotfish.

Hanauma Bay is also the favorite getaway of Hawaiins citizens for centuries now. The famous movies Blue Hawaii with Elvis Presley and Donovan’s Reef with John Wayne were filmed in this beautiful Bay.

However, when you get there, you’ll start your journey with a 15- minutes video documentary about Hanauma Bay Park.
After the video, You will be snorkeling in one of the most beautiful Bay of Oahu.
Non-swimmer, beginners and advanced snorkelers can participate in this trip. It is a friendly and fun tour for the whole family! An adventure not to miss out!

Average Rank:  4 out of 5

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 2# Oahu Shark Diving CageOahu Sharks Cage Diving Tour

If you crave exciting activity to do while you are on vacation, then the shark diving adventure will exceed all your expectations!

Get ready to see all sorts of impressive sharks up close such as Sandbars, Hammerheads, and Galapagos! Whether you decide to dive in the cage or stay on the deck, one thing is sure is that you will enjoy watching these incredible marine lives.

Your shark adventure starts at Haleiwa Boat Harbor where you will sail for about 15 minutes to the dive spot. Once you arrive, you’ll enter into the cage with your snorkel gear on to observe all the beautiful sharks, swimming around you for about 20 minutes.

There is no need to know how to swim as there are bars to hang on to. Even children can participate in this tour. This activity is truly for anyone who wants to get some exciting sensations!

Average Rank:  5 out of 5

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3# Oahu Submarine Scooter Adventure

Submarine Scooter adventure in Oahu

The Oahu Submarine Scooter tour is a fun and unusual way to explore the underwater world:) You will watch all sorts of beautiful schools of tropical fishes while riding your self-propelled, electric scooter with a bubble helmet on your head!

You don’t need to do anything except sitting on the edge of your motorcycle and enjoy the dive! This tour starts at Honolulu’s Keyhole. From there you will sail on board a large catamaran to the dive destination.

On your way to Oahu’s coast, you will have the opportunity to see beautiful islands and Bays such as Koko Crater, Diamond Head, Maunalua and the fabulous mountain range.

Once you arrive, the crew will show you how to use the equipment. Then you’ll go down in the water with few other scooters and a guide for about 20 minutes. When you have finished the underwater tour, you can either relax on the boat or snorkel around the vessel.

You will be able to degust all the tasty snacks, and refreshing drinks served on board while listening great music and watching all the spectacular surrounding.

The Submarine Scooter adventure doesn’t require any license, neither diving experience. This tour is open to everyone! Children, divers, non-swimmers, or advanced snorkelers can enjoy the submarine tour.

Average Rank:  4 out of 5

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 4# Leeward Coast Dolphin and Snorkel Half-Day CruiseSnorkeling tour with dolphin in Oahu

Watching dolphins while Sailing along the Leeward Coast is a tour everyone should experience at least once in a Lifetime! While cruising on board a luxury catamaran, you will enjoy watching beautiful sea creatures such as Spinner dolphins, turtles, all sorts of coral reefs and school of lovely colored fishes. And you will even have the chance to see humpback whales if you do the tour in the winter.

Apart from sailing, you will also snorkel with an experimented guide in the bluest water of Oahu to explore the beauty of the underwater world for about 45 minutes. That’s not all!

Your tour continues a board the spacious catamaran. You will be spoiled with a delicious buffet, offering all sorts of tasty food and unlimited non-alcoholic drinks.

This tour is for everyone! As long as you feel comfortable in the water, you are good to go! Non-swimmer and children can slip on a life jacket so they can float comfortably on the water. If snorkeling is not your wish, you can enjoy watching the dolphins and fishes from the boat with a refreshing drink in your hand:)

Average Rank:  4.5 out of 5

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5# Turtle Canyon Snorkel Cruise by CatamaranSnorkeling with Turtle Canyon in Oahu

Have you ever seen Canyon turtles up close? If not, then you will have the chance to do so by doing this fabulous tour that takes place on a 53-foot luxury motor catamaran. While on your way to the destination, you will degust a variety of tasty snacks and drinks with brilliant background music.

Then you’ll go snorkeling with a guide to see the impressive Canyon turtles and many other beautiful sea creatures. This trip lasts approximately about 2 to 3 hours, and the Midday tour offers a delicious sandwich buffet.

Children, as well as non-swimmers and swimmers, are welcome to participate in this tour!

Average Rank:  5 out of 5

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Snorkeling in Oahu

Oahu is home to beautiful coral reefs as well as has an incredible underwater world. A lot of visitors comes from all over the world to discover the stunning marine life such as dolphins, sharks, whales, and all sorts of exceptional fishes.

Oahu is a real paradise for water sports lovers. Snorkeling, diving, boating, and surfing are extremely popular in Hawaii. But let’s focus on snorkeling because it is the main subject of this article:)

The depth of the water plays an important role when snorkeling. If you snorkel in deep water, chances are you won’t nearly see any sea creatures. If you want to have great visibility in the water, you would want to snorkel in between 4 and 25 feet depth!


 Weather and Water Condition in Oahu

Weather

The climate in Hawaii is delightful throughout the year. It is unusual to see the bad weather in this beautiful paradise, no matter the location. Between June to September the temperatures increase and it is quite warm and humid at this period of the year. The winter in Hawaii is pleasant, and you can expect to have a cooler climate between December to February.

January (73.5) – February (74.8) – March (77.3) – April (77.2) – May(79.2) – June (80.4) – July (82.2) – August (81.6) – September (80.4) – October (79.7) – November (77.2) – December (75.3)


 Water condition 

Water temperatures in Hawaii don’t vary much during the year. From May to September, water gets a bit warmer. So you can enjoy all sorts of water sports all year round!

Januar (76.5) – February (75.9) – March (75.7) – April (76.9) – May (77.9) June (78.7) – July (78.9) – August (79.5) – September (80.4) – October (79.8) – November (78.5) – December (77)


What to Wear In Oahu

As the weather is pleasant throughout the year, you would want to pack some t-shirts, shorts, beach covers, sandals or flip flops.
Don’t forget to bring swimsuits, hats, polarized sunglasses, beach towel, and bio sunscreen.
Although the evenings are quite warm, it can get cooler sometimes. Also, bear in mind that restaurants use the air conditioner and it can become pretty cold inside. So it is better to take a light jacket or a sweater with you.


When Is The Best Time For Oahu Tours?

There is no best month to snorkeling in Oahu. You can enjoy all sorts of water sports all year long as the weather is most of the time very pleasant. The sea is calmer in the summer than in the winter, giving you more options. There are advantages to go snorkeling both in the winter and early spring. You will be able to see impressive whales during this time of the year. Some islands are more agitated than others, so you should always check the condition of the sea of the chosen places.


Tips

1. If you participate in an organized tour, snorkel gear will be provided to you. But if you snorkel by your own you will either have to invest or rent a good snorkel set to have a pleasant snorkel excursion. If you are a beginner, I highly recommend you to choose a mask with tempered lenses and silicone skirt. Also, try to choose a dry snorkel with a valve on the top that prevents water getting into the tube. With this type of snorkel, you won’t swallow water.

2. If you are new to snorkeling, it will be best to try first your snorkel kit in a swimming pool or shallow water. And when you feel comfortable with it, then you are ready to go!

3. A floating device will be of great help if you are not a good swimmer. It will allow you to float on the water, and enjoy better your snorkeling trip. However, every organized tour provides a floating device for your comfort and security.

4. If you don’t participate in an organized tour, you should always go snorkeling with a group or with someone, but never alone, especially in the ocean.

5. No matter if you go on a tour or you go snorkeling independently. The water is calmer in the morning than in the afternoon, which makes the trip more enjoyable.


 

In Conclusion

Oahu welcomes around 5 million visitors each year, making this island the most popular in Hawaii! There are so many beautiful places for snorkeling there that it makes it difficult to choose the spot that suit you best.

Therefore going on an organized tour that knows all the secret gems in Hawaii is very important! The tours that are listed in this article are the best rated and the most popular, so choose the one that you like and book it!

 

Have you already participated in one of these tours? If so, share your experience in the comment below.

16 COMMENTS

  1. I just finished reading your article on The Best Tours In Oahu.
    I will be traveling to Oahu In January.
    I must add your number two selection, the shark diving experience! That is right up my alley!
    Do you have any other adrenaline filled adventures I should look into?
    Brendon

    • Hi Brendon,

      That’s wonderful! Hawai is a great place to have fun!
      January is the best time of the year to see big whales if you do one of these tours. 
      If you need an extra boost of adrenalines, then you can dive with sharks without a cage:) Many people find it to be more exciting without a cage. 

      I hope it helped! 
      Let me know if you need help with anything. I am always happy to assist!
      Thank you for the comment and wish you a wonderful day!

  2. Hello Daniella,

    I was looking for a place to snorkel and really didnt know where to begin looking. I am glad I found your recommendations an Oahu island looks amazing. I have always wanted to see the Dolphins as well so Leeward Coast looks like a good idea. I was wandering if Leeward coast has any turtles? I think I am going to book through you, do you have any special deals? Thanks

    • Hi Freddy,

      I am happy you’ve found this article useful, thank you!
      Yes, you will also see turtles, you can be reassured about this! For the moment, there aren’t any deals, but anyways, these tours are inexpensive for what you get!
      Thank you for the comment and wish you a fantastic day!

  3. My bags are packed and I am ready to head to Hawaii. I would really love the shark tour and the turtle tour. Both of these look amazing. Are all of these tours available on the same island, or would you have to do some island hopping to do these tours, say if you wanted to give them all a try? Also, how about the expense for these. Which tours are the least expensive tours to take?

    • Awesome! I’m sure you’ll have a good time!

      All the tours listed in this article are the best you can find in Oahu. Yes, these tours take place in Oahu, and If you have the time, you can enjoy doing all of them! 
      Hanauma Bay is the cheaper tour currently, it cost $36.00 which includes the transportation from the hotel to the destination. I never mention prices because it sometimes fluctuates due to special deals, holidays,etc.. and I wouldn’t want my readers to get confused.
      I hope I have answered all your questions:) 
      Let me know if you need more help! 

      Thank you for the comment and wish a great day!

  4. Great article! I wish I had read it before I went to Oahu last year. The shark cage would be too scary for me but the others espeically the turtle canyon and the scooter adventure look awesome. I’ll keep checking in to your site. Thanks!

    • Hi, Katherine,

      I am glad you liked the article, thank you! Yes, the shark cage is quite scary, but you can watch the sharks from the deck if you don’t want to get into the cage. The scooter and the turtle canyon are fantastic tours. I am pretty sure you will enjoy them!
      Next time you go to Oahu, don’t hesitate to do one of these tours!
      Thank you for the comment and wish you a lovely day!

  5. Greetings, Daniella,

    I’ve never been to Hawaii but it’s definitely a place that I have always wanted to visit as a child.

    I love and appreciate the descriptions you gave for the places to go snorkeling in Oahu. To be able to walk the same beach that Elvis Presley walked would be pretty amazing, but the minute I saw the picture from the Oahu Shark Diving Cage, I knew that would be something I would have to experience!

    For people like myself who have no experience with what to look for, your post covers all the bases in a short period of time, Daniella.

    Happy Snorkeling!

    • Hi, Veronica,

      If you’ve never been to Hawaii, then you should consider going there. It is a beautiful place to visit, and Oahu is one of the most popular islands in Hawaii. Yes, the shark diving cage is an exciting tour, it’s hard to believe how many people are attracted by sharks:)
      I am glad you’ve found all the information in the article useful, and I hope they will serve you if you go to Hawaii:)
      Thank you for the comment!

      Have a great day:)

  6. One of those days iwill go in one of those paradise destination for sure.It must be quite expansive but sure that it is tottally worth it.I am already planing my trip to one of those paradise destination.Slowly but surely!I can’t wait it is going to be lit.Is there all include hotel room by the beach i love those forfeit.

    • Hi there,

      Yes, I agree! Oahu is a dream place to spend time. Contrarily to what you think, these trips are not expensive at all for what you get! Well, to answer your question you can rent a room in Waikiki but be aware that the hotel is not included in the tour.

      Feel free to drop a message if you need to know more info. I’ll be glad to help:)

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a fantastic day!

  7. I really like Hawaii. I always wanted to go there bit never mad it. Your site provides me with valuable Information and it really triggers me to think about my next trip. Also, I get a very good Overview about yachts and what are the differences between the different pages. Moreover, I’d like to say, that your theme and Page layout is clear and very appealing. Please keep on the good work, I will definitely follow your process.

    • Hi, Marcel,

      I am glad you like the website, thank you!
      If you’ve never been to Hawaii, then you should definitely give it a try:) It is a beautiful place to spend vacations!
      You have all the information needed to plan your next trip to Oahu in this article, so go ahead and have fun!

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a lovely day!

  8. I was reading your article about the snorkelling tours in Oahu.
    Looks great. Special I like a lot to have the possibility to snorkelling around the dolphins while sailing along the Leeward Coast. But the problem is that even so, I swim well, I have always had some doubt about snorkelling if it was a danger around it. But you have convinced that it is not. Is no reason for me to be worried at snorkelling at all?

    • Hi, Johann,

      Yes, the Leeward island is amazing, and the views are spectacular!
      I think that we all have this feeling when snorkeling because the sea and what is inside is quite impressive:)
      You can be reassured with the team that manages the excursion. They are extremely knowledgeable, and as I’ve mentioned it above, they will never put your life in danger! So there is no need to worry at all!

      Thank you for the comment and wish you a wonderful day!

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