Coral reefs around the world are dying at an incredible rate. Between pollution, climate change, oil spills, and other destruction they are in grave danger. Fortunately, some are protected to prevent further damage. In addition to the living coral itself, reefs support a diverse population of fish, octopus, sea turtles, eels, and many other forms of marine life.

Best Views

The best way to view and appreciate the delicate and colorful ecosystem of a shallow coral reef is by snorkeling. The activity merely requires a snorkel tube for breathing, a diving mask for clear vision, and flippers for gentle movement. The length of the tube, typically twelve inches, allows participants to breathe normally with their faces underwater for extended periods of time. Easy instructions and minimal effort makes Snorkel Tours in Hawaii an activity for the whole family.

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Hanauma Bay

For an opportunity to enjoy a protected shallow coral reef and ecosystem, do not miss Snorkeling Hanauma Bay. A nature reserve since 1967, this location is home to a variety of coral, over four-hundred and fifty species of marine life, a pristine white sand beach, and clear water the color of turquoise. Keep in mind that it is illegal to remove any fish, coral, shells or sand from the bay. Further protection in 1990 restricts the amount of visitors to no more than three-thousand per day, which it reaches on average.

This location ten minutes from Waikiki is enormously popular with tourists as well as locals. Anyone planning to visit this unique place and take advantage of the experience should Book a tour now. Tours sell out months in advance, so do not hesitate to pick a date and time and reserve space. Compare companies for pricing, scheduling, and what exactly is included in the tour.

A Few More Pieces of Information

There is an admission charged for visitors to the bay. It is nominal, but is not included in tour pricing. Certain individuals are allowed in for free. Children who are twelve years old or younger are not required to pay. Residents of Hawaii are not charged admission, but be sure to have proof of address for this perk. Those in the military, along with dependents can also visit free of charge.

The bay is only open at certain hours each day, and is closed on Tuesday. It is also closed during the end of the year holidays for one week, so holiday travelers will not be able to enjoy the view. Lifeguards are on duty, and amenities include restrooms, showers, pay phones, and lockers. A snack bar and gift shop are also on site. Those wishing to view a protected reef can Learn more here.