When you snorkel on Oahu you will discover an undersea world full of surprises including colorful fish, coral caverns and lava formations. Many excellent snorkeling sites are accessed directly from the shore while boat excursions also visit prime Oahu snorkeling locations.
The reefs of Waikiki provide great snorkeling along Oahu’s scenic south shore. Just east of Waikiki is the spectacular Hanauma Bay, a Nature Preserve set within an ancient volcanic crater. This is one of Hawaii’s top snorkeling sites with calm, shallow water and white sand, and it is also where the Obama family went snorkeling last Christmas.
On Oahu’s windward side snorkel in the popular Kaneohe Bay, or enjoy the crystal clear waters of Waimea Bay on the north shore. Also on the north shore is Shark’s Cove, a small and rocky bay with an impressive array of marine life amidst the caves and ledges. On the southern edge of Shark’s Cove are the Pupukea Tidepools which are great for exploring.
Kulima Cove on the north shore is a well-protected snorkeling site great for beginners. The cove is located on the eastern edge of the Turtle Bay Hilton and lined with a beautiful white sand beach.
On the western tip of Oahu is Kaena Point State Park featuring a postcard perfect beach that slopes gently deeper with clear blue water and lots of marine life.
Also on the west side of Oahu is Kahe Point Beach Park, just north of Ko Olina Resorts, is known for its water clarity and large numbers of fish. Kahe Point is also a known resting place for pods of Hawaiian spinner dolphins.
Guided Oahu snorkeling tours are a great way to make sure you visit the best snorkeling sites taking into account the ocean conditions on the day of your excursion. Guides will also help to ensure your safety and provide knowledge about the marine life you are seeing as well as history and traditional legends of the area.
Snorkeling tours may also be combined with kayaking, boat cruises and other Oahu activities. Explore Oahu’s colorful underwater world by visiting the best sites on a fun and exiting Oahu snorkeling excursion.
Oahu Scuba Diving
Scuba diving on Oahu takes you into a colorful underwater world of coral reefs, tropical fish and other vibrant marine life.
From the south shore’s Hanauma Bay set in a volcanic crater to the caves and caverns along the famed north shore, scuba diving on Oahu offers many great possibilities. A charter boat dive is one of the best ways to experience scuba diving on Oahu, though shoreline dives are also an option.
Explore the scenic depths of the North Shore at Sharks Cove where there are many lava tubes and caverns and an extraordinary underwater topography. Nearby Three Tables features an “underwater church” and the famous Waimea wall.
An outstanding boat dive is the Atlantis site with marine trenches and valleys filled with marine life from lobsters and zebra moray eels to Spanish dancers and white-tip reef sharks. At Twin Arches the amazing rock bridges are inhabited by spotted eagle rays and stingrays along with green sea turtles.
On the west side of Oahu is the Airplane Canyons plane wreck site at 98 feet beneath the surface and home to many scorpionfish, octopi and moray eels. Another airplane dive is the fuselage from the “29 Down” television show sitting between two reef systems 75 feet down.
The Makaha Caverns dive site sits offshore of beautiful Makaha Beach and features cavern diving and spacious lava tubes amidst a variety of marine life.
On the south side of Oahu the protected Hanauma Bay offers shoreline dive sites for beginners to experts. Turtle Canyons is a five-fingered reef system offshore of Waikiki which provides great exploring. Offshore are shipwrecks and plane wrecks, and at the Portlock Wall and Sea Cave you can enter a large sea cave and then drift with the current along the wall amidst a multitude of fish.
Numerous dive shops on Oahu provide scuba diving gear rentals, lessons and certification for the full range of skill and experience levels. Enjoy an unforgettable scuba diving adventure in Oahu’s amazing undersea world full of discovery and excitement.