- Featured Tour
Our original tour that we have been operating for over 30 years.
Snorkel the crystal clear waters of historical Kealakekua Bay!
With the world-renowned and historic destination of Kealakekua Bay just minutes from our point of departure, the Captain Cook Exclusive is a personal, exciting, and efficient way to see the Bay named one of the world’s best snorkeling locations. Kealakekua Bay is a 315-acre marine sanctuary that boasts incredibly protected waters year round making it the best place in Hawaii for beginner snorkelers.
After a full hour of snorkeling in the crystal clear waters directly in front of the monument to Captain James Cook, you make your way back to Keauhou Bay along the South Kona coastline. Your Captain maneuvers our custom-made vessels into the sea caves at the base of Hualalai, hugging the coast and detailing the culturally significant and geologically fascinating features along the way. Watch for dolphins, whales, sea turtles, and even herds of thousands of goats! If you plan on snorkeling while in Hawaii and want to see what few do, this is the tour for you.
Kealakekua Bay has a contentious place in contemporary Hawaiian history. Captain Cook Monument was erected where its namesake, Captain James Cook, was killed in 1779. The monument itself was built by the British to commemorate their fallen soldier, the site where the white obelisk structure stands is also a culturally significant area to the Native Hawaiians. The relationship between the British explorers had become increasingly contentious before Cook’s death, something can be represented in the juxtaposition of his monument on the sacred land, belonging to the Hawaiians. Visiting this site is a great window into the centuries long contention between natives and those who came to colonize the islands.
While the history of Kealakekua Bay is extremely interesting, nowadays Captain Cook Monument is better known for the incredible coral reef found in the shallow waters just off shore! On your snorkel tour of Kealakekua Bay you have the chance to get up close and personal with a variety of hundreds of tropical fish and marine creatures. While there is no guarantee as to what you’ll see exactly on any given day– the reef is home to a wide array of different plant and animal life; the deeper waters are even known to have pods of Hawaiian spinner dolphins frequently playing around.
Some common species that you may encounter on our Captain Cook snorkel tour are parrotfish, moray eels, Hawaiian green sea turtles (also known as “honu”) and even the state fish: humuhumunukunukuapua’a.
When you book your Captain Cook snorkel tour with us at Sea Quest Hawaii, you are saving your spot aboard our boat for a day of fun and adventure! Some may imagine that a snorkel tour in South Kona consists of getting in the water, swimming around for about an hour, and booking it back to the marina; that is not the case aboard our boat! The Kealakekua Bay Tour weaves ample time in the water with onboard exploration. Our captain will not only work to facilitate close encounters with the native Hawaiian aquatic life around Captain Cook Monument’s reef, but take you on an expedition to explore the hidden gems along Kona Coast.
Make sure that you have everything you need for the day trip before we head out! While our boats are loaded with snacks, beverages, the gear that you need while in the water- like a mask and snorkel- it is always smart to bring your own reef safe sunscreen, sunglasses, and/or whatever else you would need to ensure that our trip is a success!
All changes to and/or cancellations of a reservation must be made 48 hours before the tour start time.
Customers will also receive a full refund in case of operator cancellation due to weather, trip minimums not being met, or other unforeseen circumstances. Contact us by phone to cancel or inquire about a cancellation. No-shows will be charged the full price.