best kona coast snorkeling locations
Welcome to the captivating shores of Kona, Hawaii, where a world of underwater wonders awaits you. With its crystal-clear waters, vibrant coral reefs, and abundant marine life, Kona is a snorkeler’s paradise. 

In this comprehensive guide, we will take you on a journey to the best Kona snorkeling locations. Whether you’re an experienced snorkeler or a beginner, these beaches will provide you with breathtaking sights and unforgettable experiences. So, grab your snorkel gear and get ready for an adventure beneath the waves.

Kealakekua Bay

Snorkeling at Kealakekua Bay is an extraordinary experience that combines natural beauty, historical significance, and an abundance of marine life. 

This renowned snorkeling location offers pristine, crystal-clear waters that reveal a mesmerizing underwater world. The bay’s protected status ensures calm and tranquil conditions, making it perfect for snorkelers of all skill levels.

What sets Kealakekua Bay apart is the opportunity to snorkel around the iconic Captain Cook Monument. This historical site marks the spot where Captain James Cook first arrived in Hawaii. 

Snorkeling near the monument allows you to explore vibrant coral formations teeming with an incredible variety of fish species. From colorful tropical fish to graceful sea turtles, the bay is a haven for marine life enthusiasts.

Moreover, the sheer beauty of Kealakekua Bay’s surroundings adds to its appeal. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover, or simply seeking an unforgettable snorkeling adventure, Kealakekua Bay is undoubtedly one of Kona’s finest snorkeling locations.

When is the best time to snorkel at Kealakekua Bay?

Generally, the best time to snorkel at Kealakekua Bay is in the morning when the wind is calmer, and temperatures are a bit more comfortable.

Kahaluu Beach Park

Kahaluu Beach Park stands out as one of the best snorkeling locations in Kona, offering a range of features that make it a popular choice among snorkelers. One of its primary attractions is the calm and shallow waters, which make it an ideal spot for beginners and families. 

The abundant marine life found at Kahaluu Beach Park is another reason why it’s a favorite among snorkelers. As you dip beneath the surface, you’ll encounter a colorful array of tropical fish, including the iconic humuhumunukunukuapua’a (Hawaii’s state fish), parrotfish, and butterflyfish. Sea turtles are also frequent visitors to the bay, adding to the excitement of your snorkeling adventure.

Additionally, Kahaluu Beach Park provides convenient amenities that enhance the overall experience. Facilities such as showers, restrooms, and picnic areas are available, making it easy to spend a full day enjoying the beach and exploring the underwater wonders. 

Whether you’re a novice snorkeler or a seasoned enthusiast, Kahaluu Beach Park promises a memorable and rewarding snorkeling experience in the heart of Kona.

Why does Kahaluu Beach Park close?

Kahaluu Beach Park will occasionally close to help the cauliflower coral grow and spawn.



Start time: 8:30am
Prices from $35

Sail KONASTYLE and experience the pristine waters of the Kona Coast as we make our way to Kealakekua Bay, which is home to the Captain Cook Monument and a marine sanctuary filled with with tropical i’a (fish) and beautiful coral structures.

Kamakahonu Beach

Kamakahonu Beach, located near the heart of Kailua-Kona, offers a unique snorkeling experience that seamlessly blends natural beauty with cultural significance. Snorkeling at this beach allows you to explore an underwater world teeming with marine life while being surrounded by historical landmarks. 

Adjacent to the beach is the stunning Ahu’ena Heiau, a reconstructed temple that served as the residence of King Kamehameha I. The combination of natural beauty and cultural heritage creates a captivating ambiance for snorkelers.

The waters of Kamakahonu Beach are home to a diverse array of marine species, offering snorkelers the opportunity to encounter colorful fish and graceful sea turtles.

Exploring the coral reefs and rock formations beneath the surface unveils a vibrant ecosystem that is sure to leave a lasting impression. 

With its rich history and remarkable marine life, Kamakahonu Beach is a true gem among Kona’s snorkeling locations, providing a unique and enriching experience for snorkelers of all backgrounds.

Honokaope Bay

Honokaope Bay, a stunning black sand beach, is a hidden gem among Kona’s snorkeling locations. This secluded bay offers a pristine and tranquil setting for snorkelers seeking a peaceful underwater experience. 

Nestled within the Waikoloa Beach area, the bay’s calm waters provide an ideal environment for snorkeling and exploring the wonders beneath the surface.

Snorkelers can marvel at the colorful tangs, triggerfish, wrasses, and other marine creatures that call this bay home. The beautiful black sand comes from the abundance of lava rock in the area, giving it a truly unique feeling.

Anaehoomalu Beach

Anaehoomalu Beach, commonly known as A-Bay, is a picturesque destination along the Kona coast that offers excellent snorkeling opportunities. It’s sandy beach and turquoise waters create a beautiful backdrop for snorkelers to explore the underwater wonders. 

The bay is blessed with vibrant coral reefs and a diverse array of marine life, making it a captivating snorkeling location. Snorkeling at Anaehoomalu Beach provides the opportunity to encounter a variety of tropical fish species, including tangs, butterflyfish, and surgeonfish. 

The crystal-clear waters offer excellent visibility, allowing snorkelers to fully appreciate the vibrant colors and intricate details of the marine ecosystem. Additionally, the bay’s convenient amenities, such as restrooms, showers, free parking, and picnic areas, ensure a comfortable and enjoyable snorkeling experience for visitors of all ages. 

Honaunau Bay (Two Step Beach)

Honaunau Bay (Two Step Beach), located just north of Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historical Park, is a great option for snorkeling. This beach was once a place where individuals could escape if they had broken a Hawaiian taboo or law.

Today it’s considered one of Hawaii’s most beautiful hidden treasures! This renowned snorkeling destination, commonly referred to as “Two Step,” offers a new perspective of the historical park as well as some fantastic marine life views.

Snorkelers can expect to see many types of tropical fish here, including Moorish Idols, butterflyfish, damselfish, and Parrotfish. There are turtles in the area as well! This is one of Hawaii’s protected marine life areas where visitors are not allowed to touch or walk on the reef. 

Swimmers must be aware that this area does have dangerous currents and conditions that can change quickly, and it is for more advanced snorkelers. The best time for snorkeling here is early morning or late afternoon when the waters will be calmer.

How deep is Two Step Beach/Honaunau Bay?

In the main snorkeling area, the bay is generally around 10 – 25 feet deep.

Is snorkeling better in Kona or Hilo?

The snorkeling in Kona is hands down the best snorkeling region on The Big Island.

What makes the Kona region so good for snorkeling?

The Kona region is renowned for its exceptional snorkeling opportunities due to its unique geography and the absence of sandy beaches. While sandy beaches can create murky water conditions due to sediment disturbance, Kona’s rocky coastline helps maintain crystal-clear waters, ensuring excellent visibility for snorkelers. 

The lava rock formations and coral reefs that characterize the Kona coast provide ideal habitats for diverse marine life, attracting a plethora of colorful fish, sea turtles, and other fascinating creatures. 

Snorkeling in Kona allows visitors to immerse themselves in a world of underwater wonders, where they can explore vibrant coral gardens, swim alongside graceful marine creatures, and witness the incredible biodiversity that thrives in this remarkable region.

What are the best snorkeling reefs in the Kona Region?

While Kona is full to the brim with amazing snorkeling beaches and spots, there are a few reefs in particular that stand out. These are Kona’s absolute best reefs and are known to hold some of the best snorkeling in the world!

When is the best time of day to snorkel in Kona?

Depending on what kind of snorkeling you’re doing, the best time of day for snorkeling can change.

It’s best to do your research for each individual location, type of snorkeling (boat vs. beach snorkeling), and the time of year. Always check local surf reports and conditions.

Unique Snorkeling Experiences In The Kona Region

Snorkeling the bays, beaches, and reefs aren’t the only interesting underwater experiences available in the Kona Region. There are a variety of tours that offer some once-in-a-lifetime experiences, such as boat snorkeling tours and diving at night with manta rays!

Snorkeling Tours

Experience the best of Kona’s underwater wonders by joining a snorkeling tour. These guided excursions take you to the region’s most breathtaking snorkeling spots, ensuring you make the most of your time in the water. Knowledgeable guides will lead you to hidden coves, vibrant coral reefs, and an abundance of marine life. 

Whether you’re a novice or an experienced snorkeler, these tours offer a safe and immersive experience, providing insights into the marine ecosystem and enhancing your snorkeling adventure.

Kona Night Diving with Manta Rays

Prepare for an awe-inspiring encounter with one of nature’s most graceful creatures – the manta ray. Night diving with manta rays is a truly unique and unforgettable experience in the Kona region. As the sun sets, these gentle giants are attracted to the waters near the coastline, drawn by the plankton blooms. 

Equipped with snorkeling gear, you can witness these magnificent creatures gliding gracefully through the water, their massive wingspan casting surreal shadows. It’s an ethereal experience that will leave you in awe of the wonders of the underwater world.

Looking for a unique way to snorkel the Kona Coast? Join a snorkeling tour with us at KONASTYLE!

We at KONASTYLE have experienced guides & ship captains and are passionate about sharing the beauty and wonders of Kona’s snorkeling locations with visitors like you. You’ll have the opportunity to explore the best snorkeling spots in Kona that are almost impossible to reach without a boat.

Don’t miss out on the chance to create lasting memories and discover the wonders beneath the surface of the Kona Coast. Book your snorkeling tour with KONASTYLE today and embark on an unforgettable aquatic adventure that will leave you with a deeper appreciation for the beauty and diversity of the underwater world.