Hanauma Bay Snorkeling
Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve on the east coast of Oahu sees an average of 3000 visitors
every day, or around a million visitors a year.
Hanauma Bay is a former volcano crater which was created about 32,000 years ago. Upwelling magma vaporized the ocean water and steam explosions blew the magma into fine ashes. Wave erosions were forming the bay which explains its current inlet. Hanauma Bay is a great spot for all kinds of species of fish and underwater animals. Therefore, it is also a very popular destination for many snorkelers.
How to Get to Hanauma Bay
If you drive by car, you should get there are soon as possible because the parking lots are quickly full and then locked. The parking fee is one dollar.
A good alternative is also taking the local bus # 22. http://www.thebus.org/Route/timetables/rt22.pdf. It runs from Waikiki to straight to Hanauma Bay and in addition you can also enjoy the beautiful nature. The bus stops right at the entrance of Hanauma Bay and costs $2.75 per person one way. A daily ticket costs $5.50 which is recommended as the bus driver will not give you any change back. (Prices as of 2018)
If you don’t want to catch the bus or don’t have a rental car you can go on one of the tours to Hanauma Bay. Most of the Hanauma Bay tours offer convenient and free pick up in Waikiki and the drop off later. Check out this Hanauma Bay Tour.
Hanauma Bay Entrance Fee
Hanauma Bay is the only beach on Oahu where you have to pay an entrance fee as a tourist. The fee is $ 7.50 (children up to 12 years are free of charge). Residents of Hawaii get in free of charge with a Hawaiian state ID as well as active military people living on Oahu. (Prices as of 2018)
If you don’t want to take your belongings to the beach, you can rent lockers on site. Prices for small lockers are 8 dollars and for larger lockers 10 dollars. You can also rent a snorkeling set for 20 dollars.
In order to get from the entrance to the beach, you have to walk down a hill but you can also take the shuttle service for 1.25 dollars a ride per person. (Prices as of 2018)
In order to be allowed on the beach, each visitor has to watch a 15-minute video explaining the beach rules and when you are in the water. You should not step on any reefs neither should you touch or feed any fish or animals.
If you want to come back within a year, you can register in a list without watching the video again.
The bay is closed to tourists every Tuesdays in order to allow the fish a day of feeding without interruption by swimmers.
Once down, you have a fantastic view over the bay and the famous volcano crater Koko Head. Do you have further questions? Write us on Facebook!