Hawaii Six Scuba Dives – SaltyDogs.com

Hawaii is one of the most stunning locations on the planet, both on land and under the water. Located 2,500 miles away from the nearest continent, Hawaii is the most remote archipelagos on the planet. As Hawaii is so remote, this means more encounters with species that you wouldn’t normally see in other places around the world. The best thing about diving in the waters surrounding Hawaii and its islands is that no dive is the same. In addition, visibility is pretty much excellent all year round. As well as great visibility, there are many species endemic to Hawaii, so this can provide one-off experiences to those who have never visited these waters before.

Where is Hawaii?

Top 6 Dive Sites In Hawaii

Manta Ray Night Dive, Kailua Kona

Manta Ray, Hawaii

Manta Ray, Hawaii

Listed as one of the top dive sites and experiences on nearly every top 10 dive sites list there is, the Manta Ray Night Dive is an experience like none-other. Large lights are built into the ocean floor, which attract unbelievable amounts of plankton to the area, which in turn provides a smorgasbord for the majestic Manta Rays of Kona, Hawaii. However, watch out because the Mantas like to come so close to you that you usually have to duck out the way, before they whack into you. This is nature in all its glory and if you’re traveling to Hawaii, then make sure you don’t miss out on this unbelievable experience.

Sea Tiger Wreck, West of Waikiki, Honolulu

Surgeonfish, Hawaii

Surgeonfish, Hawaii

The Sea Tiger is a former Chinese trading vessel that was confiscated in the early 1990’s for carrying 90 plus illegal immigrants into Hawaii. The Sea Tiger was then purchased by ‘Voyager Submarines’, cleaned up and then sunk as a part of a dive enrichment effort. The wreck stretches approximately 45 meters and boasts some of the most spectacular sights.

With the plethora of marine species that have made this wreck their home, its pretty hard not to see why this dive site made it to our top 6 list. Residents of this wreck includes; 6ft sea turtles, white tip reef sharks, moray eels, eagle rays and huge schools of fish, just to name a few.

Divers are able to penetrate the wreck with the correct dive certifications, entering through the cargo holds and bridge. Even though there is some miner degradation, the Sea Tiger is still in relatively good shape, making it an amazing experience for wreck diving enthusiasts.

Back Wall of Molokini Crater, Maui

Stunning Coral, Hawaii

Stunning Coral, Hawaii

This spectacular dive site often has a slight current, however it’s more or an intermediate to advanced dive site due to its unique ledges and wall drop off. This is a great spot to enjoy a leisurely drift dive. Due to its depths and lack of a bottom, the visibility reaches well over 30m, which is great for seeing wildlife including sharks, manta rays, dolphins and even whales during certain seasons.

The Forbidden Island, Niihau

Rainbow Fish, Hawaii

Rainbow Fish, Hawaii

This amazing dive location can only be accessed from late spring through to the beginning of autumn, as the winter brings swells that are too big to take on as a diver. This is a dive for experienced divers only. There are a number of dive spots at this location, from relaxed dives over 5m of pristine and beautiful corals to walls that drop below 60m. You’ll find spinner dolphins and even monk seals at this location as well as some rare species of fish and plenty of stunning coral.

The Cathedrals, Lanai

Turtle, Hawaii

Turtle, Hawaii

If you ask any diver who has been to Hawaii, what they would class as a great dive location, the Cathedrals is usually their answer. The depth of this location is around 18 to 20 meters, visibility is excellent and every level of diver can enjoy this dive. The two pinnacles that form the Cathedrals can be used as a great wall dive, as well as providing stunning arches and exciting caves to explore. The caverns roofs have heights of up to 6m and are covered in lava rock that lets in little bits of light from the surface, similarly to a stained glass window.

Corsair, Oahu

The Corsair airplane wreck is found roughly 3 miles away from the Hawaii Kai marina. It sits in 35m of stunning blue pacific waters and is in an upright position. Due to its location, the waters are quite rough, so this is for advanced divers only. The plane sank in 1948 and was originally on route from Pearl Harbor when the captain noticed the fuel gauge was going down quite quickly. He thought it was a faulty gauge and decided to continue on with his journey, when the plane suddenly began to splutter. The captain managed to land the plane safely in the water and it then sank with no damage. The captain was later rescued.

Divers are able to penetrate this wreck, however be aware that the yellow margin moray eels like to make this wreck their home, and are not keen on scuba diving invaders. Larger marine life also like to hang out around this airplane wreck with stingrays, sharks, tiger sharks, rays, manta rays and even during certain seasons, whales like to swim by. This is an excellent dive site that should not be missed, if you’re planning a trip to Hawaii.



There are so many amazing dive sites found around the islands of Hawaii, so if we have missed any off this list, please let us know about them in the comment box below!



Hawaii Really Quick Island Guide

Some of the most reliable pleasures of Hawaii travel include exploring its national parks, multiethnic cuisine and indigenous culture. A luxurious spa treatment rarely goes amiss, though some may prefer the riskier adventure of scuba with sharks. Here’s an island-by-island look at what’s new in those various vacation modes:

– Jeanne Cooper


Online reservations are now required to view sunrise from the summit district of Haleakala National Park. The cost is $1.50 per vehicle, payable via www.recreation.gov up to 60 days in advance; the receipt and photo ID must be presented to enter the area between 3 and 7 a.m. The fee is in addition to park admission, which costs $20 per car and is valid for three days. Note: The park holds 30 spaces in reserve until 24 hours before the next sunrise, so die-hards can always try to rebook quickly if skies are cloudy.

Meanwhile, in the park’s Kipahulu district, the tiered pools of Oheo Gulch (nicknamed the “Seven Sacred Pools”) have been closed indefinitely following a rock slide Jan. 3 that prompted concerns of further slides, especially during the typically rainy winter months. Check the park website for updates. www.nps.gov/hale


Sea Life Park’s new Shark Tank Experience allows novice and experienced divers to swim with the sharks — blacktip and whitetip reef, sandbar and hammerhead varieties — in a 300,000-gallon aquarium. The daily adventure takes place at 2:30 p.m.; admission to the park is included in the $199 fee (www.sharktankscuba.com).

If you’d rather eat than think about the possibility of being eaten, new options appear as regularly as surf in Waikiki. Royal Hawaiian Hotel is marking its 90th anniversary by opening the first stand-alone bakery among island hotels. Open 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily, the Royal Hawaiian Bakery sells classic and tropical-themed pastries, such as Koloa pineapple coffee cake and haupia cream brioche. www.royal-hawaiian.com

One hotel down, at the Outrigger Waikiki, the Hula Grill Waikiki now serves brunch seven days a week, from 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.; locally sourced poke tacos, strawberry mochi waffles, local eggs and ahi katsu sandwiches reflect island style (www.hulagrillwaikiki.com). The new Waikiki Yokocho in Waikiki Shopping Plaza takes its inspiration from Japan’s food-filled alleyways (yokocho), offering 14 intimate restaurants and bars. The latest to open is 28-seat Tsujita Ramen, known for its Ajitama Tsukemen ($13), a slow-cooked broth with soft-boiled egg accompanied by thick noodles and other toppings. www.waikiki-yokocho.com, www.tsujita-hawaii.com

Honolulu’s Kakaako neighborhood has attracted two spin-offs of popular restaurants. Piggy Smalls, a Ward Village offshoot of Chinatown’s the Pig and the Lady, offers Vietnamese specialties such as “pho-strami” banh mi sandwiches and vegan pho (www.thepigandthelady.com/piggysmalls).


Visitors to Poipu Beach no longer have to wonder what’s the story with the four towering tikis overlooking 13 acres that for years were covered with brush and weeds. A new viewing platform and walkway sport five interpretive signs sharing detailed stories of Ke Kahua O Kaneioluma (“the Kaneioluma complex”), first mapped in 1959 and including a centuries-old heiau (temple), rock walls, home sites, games arena and fishpond. www.kaneiolouma.com

Big Island

Visitors to the Kohala Coast looking for other evening entertainment will soon be able to see first-run movies in a new cinema with leather seats, cocktails, wood-fired pizza and more. Currently under construction, the three-screen Waikoloa Luxury Cinemas plans to open this spring in Queens’ MarketPlace. www.hawaiicinemas.com

There’s a new way to view Kaloko-Honokohau National Historical Park (www.nps.gov/kaho) as well as the historic and cultural sites of Kailua-Kona and Keauhou. Using an all new Hydra-Terra amphibious tour bus, Big Island Duck Tours (www.bigislandduck.com) takes 40 passengers on a tour/pub quiz that cruises down 7½ miles of Alii Drive, then heads to Honokohau Harbor for an actual cruise past ancient fishponds and a former Hawaiian village. Tours start at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday-Saturday; the cost is $49 adults, $35 ages 2 to 18. www.bigislandduck.com


While the reopening of the Four Seasons Lodge at Koele has been pushed back till next year, the other resort on Larry Ellison’s island continues to increase its luxury quotient. At the Four Seasons Resort Lanai, the eight treatment rooms at the new Hawanawana Spa include four couples’ suites with side-by-side treatment beds, rain showers, and a cozy living and dining area.

Given that most guests from the mainland spend hours waiting for connecting flights in Honolulu to Lanai, the resort has opened its own airport lounge, on the second floor of Honolulu’s Overseas Terminal. Guests can check into their room; book dinner, a spa treatment or other activity; and enjoy free Wi-Fi, movies, food and drink, among other amenities. www.fourseasons.com/lanai


Ferry service from Maui ended in late October, increasing pressure on the limited nonstop flights to the island. Hawaiian Airlines’ Ohana (www.hawaiianairlines.com) offers daily service on 48-passenger turboprops from Honolulu, Maui’s Kahului airport and Lanai, while Mokulele Airlines (www.mokuleleairlines.com) and Makani Kai Air (www.makanikaiair.com) offer daily service from Honolulu on nine-passenger turboprops.

Book flights and lodging early for popular events such as the Molokai Ka Hula Piko Festival, June 1-3, www.kahulapiko.com, or the Molokai 2 Oahu Paddleboard World Championship, July 30, www.molokai2oahu.com.





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