From start to finish this was an amazing tour. Our driver Eddie arrived in Waikiki to pick us up and was so nice and gave wonderful suggestions for sights and places to eat. He was personable and funny and full of great information about the island. He was our driver back to our hotel and surprised us with a taste of some local food to try. Such a great guy!! The crew was very attentive and made the journey fun. They worked hard to ensure we all had what we needed. We saw dolphins, turtles and a variety of fish. This tour was truly a highlight of our vacation.
This was one of the best snorkeling tours I have ever taken! I remember snorkeling in the Great Barrier Reef in Australia a couple of years ago, but this was by far a much better experience! First off, the boat appeared to be new, super clean, and the crew was fantastic! They didn't spend too much time repeating over and over and over again the safety procedures of the tour--like many other companies do I'm sure due to liability issues. No, these guys went right on really quick just to brief us about what to do, what to expect, the do's and don't's, etc, so we had more time to actually enjoy the snorkeling experience, especially since everyone on the boat had done this before. The waters of the leeward coast were very calm and clear. We saw tons of different tropical fish as well as a few sea turtles. We also so dolphins and a whale in the distance--even though it wasn't whale season at all. After the snorkeling swim, the crew prepared a very delicious lunch with two alcoholic beverages included free of charge!. All in all, it was a very enjoyable experience in a different part of Hawaii. All of my family enjoyed it very much. I'd highly recommend it to anyone.
I guess it didn't occur to me and my traveling companion that a snorkeling cruise that included booze would be a kid-friendly activity, but apparently it is. So be prepared for that. There was a kid screaming the entire van ride to the marina, so the day didn't start out well. You only really get about half an hour to snorkel, so if you actually want to snorkel, just go to Hanauma Bay. You can snorkel as long as you want and you will see more interesting fish. The place we went on the cruise had very few fish, and yeah we saw one sea turtle, a couple of octopi, and sea urchins, but Hanauma Bay has the really amazingly colored fish, so that was definitely a better experience.
The reason we took the cruise was because we had been annoyed by the crowds of people swimming into us on our previous excursion to Hanauma Bay. Well this didn't solve that problem. The catamaran carries 40-50 people and everyone is swimming in the same small area...along with people from another boat. Oh, and they make you wear a flotation device, so again, Hanauma Bay is really more flexible for people who know how to swim. We did see dolphins from the side of the boat, but you aren't going to swim with them.
Things I wish I had known before booking this trip: 1 they expect you to take off your shoes and leave them in a bin on the dock so dress accordingly 2 they claim not to allow spray-on sunscreen on the boat so bring something else I saw a woman using her spray and no one said anything to her which was also annoying 3 don't really count on breakfast - it was fruit and cake and everything was gone before my friend and I arrived apparently taking the van from Waikiki puts you out of the breakfast game since we were the last group to arrive.
This tour was awesome. The captain and crew were great. Very friendly and informative, made sure everyone had a great time. Saw dolphins and sea turtles. Great snokeling. This was the highlight of our trip.