Photo-roll: Whale Watching with the Pacific Whale Foundation in Maui, Hawaii

One of our more spectacular honeymoon activities was an unforgettable snorkeling trip that featured easily the best whale-watching of my life.  Honestly – I’ll let the photos do the talking – but the views of humpback whales during the winter are fantastic. You can easily spot these gentle beauties from shore, but a whale-watching or snorkeling trip can get you up close and personal. I highly recommend the adventure.

We chose to take a snorkeling trip with the Pacific Whale Foundation. It was fantastic from start to finish and I highly recommend taking any trip that the foundation has to offer. Their vessels are up-to-date and their staff are knowledgeable – two huge wins in my book!

The trip began with a dark cloud – we were told that the waters were rough and we were not likely to get any snorkeling in. They offered us a refund, but we were also given the option to take the trip out to the reef to check things out. I’m glad to say that we took the chance (I mean, if nothing else we would have had a boat ride) because the water almost immediately cleared up and we were snorkeling in paradise.

The reef is interesting – Molokini provides a crescent shaped barrier against the sea, creating a uniquely-shaped reef that shelters a plethora of marine life. I was terrified to take the plunge, but after a little reassurance, I stuck my head in and was amazed by the sights: yellow tangs, trigger fish, butterflyfish… too many to name or identify! As we swam triggerfish bobbed around us like puppy dogs – I was in fish biologist heaven.

We were particularly fortunate as the day progressed – the water cleared up enough to permit a stop at a second site, the infamous Turtle Town. And yes, I got to swim with actual sea turtles. To my amazement, one swam directly underneath me as I floated with eyes the size of saucers (Scott will attest to this observation). It. Was. Fantastic!

Aboard the ship we were treated to talks about humpback whale migration and behaviour, tasty BBQ burgers, a salad made of pickles, and a beverage from the Maui Brewing Company. Such a treat after over an hour of swimming.

Of course, the whale watching was particularly spectacular – it’s kind of hard not to focus on that since my previous whale watching trip was kind of a dud. We got to see several pods of whales – including a nursing mother – as well as dolphins and turtles.


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