Tour Summary: Snorkel adventure from a 50-foot luxury trimaran to see the majestic manta rays at the world-famous "Manta Village" location in Keauhou (south Kona).
- Snorkeling with Manta Rays at night in Kona Hawaii is a truly magical experience
- Called "one of the top ten things to do in your lifetime" by the Travel Channel
- Manta Guarantee: re-book for free if you do not see a Manta Ray on your tour
- Sea Paradise is a Green Listed Activity Provider and verified by the Manta Ray Advocates of Hawaii.
- GoPro upgrade available
- Wetsuits and snorkeling gear provided
Important: Bring your own towel, cover up, light jacket or sweater for after you're out of the water. **Manta Ray Guarantee** Sea Paradise can not guarantee the sighting of Manta Rays. If a manta ray isn’t seen the night of your trip you can return free on any regularly scheduled Manta Ray experience during the next 7 days. Space available and advanced reservation required for return trip, note that this is *not* a money back guarantee.
|(excluding taxes & fees)||$130||$115|
Tour Provider: Sea Paradise
Tour start time: Depending on the time of sunset between 5 pm and 6:30 pm, with when needed a second tour 2.5 hours later
Duration: 2 hours
Departure from: Keauhou Harbor
Pick-up available? No
Included: All snorkel gear and wetsuit provided. Light snacks and sodas / tea / hot cocoa on the sail back
Cancellations: Cancellations require 24 hour advance notice on regular bookings and 72 hour advance notice on private charters. You must call (800) 322-5662 or 808-322-2500 to cancel your tour. No refunds will be issued if you do not call to cancel in the required time prior to your scheduled check-in time.
Read more: about manta rays on the Love Big Island website in our manta rays guide.
This sunset tour from the Keauhou Bay harbor takes place on the Hoku Nui, a 50-foot luxury trimaran. Keauhou Bay is the original location for Manta Ray tours and is the location with the highest amount of Manta Ray sightings in Hawaiʻi.
Manta rays are gentle giants of the sea, with many residing along the Kona Coast. Harmless to humans, they are drawn to the spotlights that light up the night to eat plankton. These mesmerizing creatures sometimes gracefully glide within inches of awe-struck snorkelers. Swimming with manta rays is often the highlight of visitors’ trips to Hawaii.
Tour location: Manta Village
Tours organized south of Kona in Keauhou, at a Manta Ray location called “Manta Village“. Manta Village is the location with the highest success rate in manta ray sightings. In 2013, for example, a staggering 96% of all manta ray tours reported seeing manta rays, with an average of 4 manta rays/night!
Typical Trip Itinerary
Enjoy a breathtaking, Hawaiian sunset aboard the spacious trimaran, the Hoku Bui. As the sun sets, the boat coasts a small distance to the snorkel location where preparations for the snorkeling tour start. The snorkeling location is only 5-10 minutes from the harbor which is a plus for those getting seasick easily. Longer sailing experiences on the Hoku Nui are available on the Sea Paradise snorkeling trips to Kealakekua Bay.
The total trip time of ~2 hours includes the check-in procedure. Expect to be out on the water for 1 to 1.5 hours, and in the water for ~45 minutes.
In the water:
Once you reach Manta Ray Village you will be given a knowledgeable and professional briefing on the manta rays. The people snorkeling will be guided onto the “manta flotation device” (see image and video below) where guests of all ages and skill levels can hold onto a float that rests above the majestic manta rays as they feed on the microscopic plankton that rises from the bottom of the ocean at night and is attracted to the light source attached to our float.
You will spend about 45 minutes in the water. Afterwards you get some light snacks or a warm cup of hot cocoa. Ride along guests (no snorkeling, big discounts available), can watch the majestic manta rays from the comfort of the trimaran.
You need to sign an e-waiver to participate in this activity. You can sign this waiver during the booking process, and directions to the boat will be given in the waiver confirmation.
Be sure to bring and wear your swimming attire when you arrive as you will be fitted for your wetsuit once you arrive at the bay.
Short Video of the Manta Ray Snorkel with Sea Paradise
In the following video you can see footage of the Manta ray snorkel tour by Sea Paradise. At several times in the video (i.e. at 1:17) you can see the “manta flotation device” used during this tour which stays on the surface the entire time. All you need to do is hold onto the float and look down through your mask – no swimming is needed!
Sea Paradise is an original manta ray tour expert in Hawaii, helping its guests get up close and personal with these majestic creatures since 1985.
They are a valued member of the Sustainable Tourism Association of Hawai’i and dedicate a lot of resources to environmental conservation and community service projects. For example, they donate and volunteer for the Surfrider Foundation and the Hawaii Wildlife Fund.
The Manta Green List
The Manta Ray Night Dive/Snorkel is a very popular activity for understandable reasons. This popularity has driven a large and unchecked growth in providers that offer these tours. Finding a balance between what is good (sustainable) for the Manta Ray population and earning an income unfortunately has put a lot of pressure on the Manta Rays, and all self-regulation efforts tried by the industry since have failed. Because of this, Hawaii Ocean Watch (HOW) created the Manta Ray Green List to protect the Manta Rays in Hawaii.
The Manta Ray Green List aims to reward safe and sustainable programs of passive interaction between people and marine life so that the creatures can be enjoyed, but not harmed, by humans. Sea Paradise is one of only four (!) preferred activity providers on this green list. This means they hold themselves to the high ecological standards set by the HOW, and commit themselves:
- to keep people and marine life safe
- to conduct sustainable operations and
- to create marine-life friendly encounters.
To better protect you and other customers, Sea Paradise has increased their health and safety measures on all of their sailing and snorkeling tours. To ensure the safety and well-being of their guests and staff they are following CDC recommendations, and have now implemented the following measures:
- A reduced tour capacity to ensure social distancing.
- To minimize contact guests must now sign a waiver online and can directly check in at the boat – no more stopping by at the office.
- The Sea Paradise crew will be required to take a temperature check and will be monitored for any COVID symptoms.
- All surfaces and equipment are scrubbed and sanitized before, during, and after each tour.
- Snorkel equipment is scrubbed and disinfected before and after each tour.
- Food items will be served by an assigned crew member wearing protective equipment.
- A cashless bar for credit/debit card purchases is now available.
- Currently both crew and guests are required to wear masks unless they are eating, drinking, swimming, snorkeling, active, or medically unable to wear.
- Hand sanitizer is provided on all tours, hand washing stations are available to staff and guests.
- An amended cancellation policy to encourage anyone experiencing symptoms to either cancel or postpone their trip.
We are affiliate partners with Sea Paradise meaning that we receive a percentage for each successful booking made through our website. This happens without any additional charge to you! (read more on the use of those links on our website here).
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