Scuba Diving Kona Hawaii: More Than Just Manta Rays
If you have looked into scuba diving Kona Hawaii then you have probably come across the Manta Ray Night Dives that the Big Island is famous for. These scuba diving and snorkeling trips are amazing and must do Hawaii activity but what other dives should you go on in Kona?
The waters off the Kona coast on the “Big Island” of Hawaii are known for their calm seas and clear waters. Mauna Loa, the largest volcano on the planet, shelters the Kona coast from the trade winds that blow throughout the State of Hawaii.
Kona is located on the leeward side of the Big Island and it is the slopes of Mauna Loa that make it an amazing place for scuba diving and snorkeling.
With many dive sites featuring lava tubes, pinnacles and arches make sure that you bring your underwater photography set up along while scuba diving Kona Hawaii (not that you should ever go on a dive without it!)
While swimming through long lava tubes look around for lobster and other crustaceans. Inside of any structure is a great place to find reef sharks sleeping during the day.
The marine life in Hawaii is unique due to the islands remote location. Approximately one-quarter (25%) to one-third (33%) of the marine life that you see while scuba diving or snorkeling in Hawaii is endemic (found nowhere else in the world.)
Hawaii’s remote location, more than 2,400 miles from the closest continental land mass, results in thousands of endemic species.
Our favorite of these endemic reef fish is the Hawaiian White Spotted Toby. This small relative of the puffer fish is commonly seen on almost every scuba dive.
Spinner Dolphins are often seen while scuba diving Kona Hawaii and in coves and bays such as Kamakahonu and Kealakekua. These amazing animals are extremely intelligent and playful. It is an amazing experience watching them swim gracefully through the water.
Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles are commonly seen throughout the State of Hawaii especially on shallow reef dive sites. These turtles can be found in large numbers on reefs known as “cleaning stations”.
A cleaning station is like a car wash for turtles. They just hang out an relax while reef fish clean their shells of parasites and other growths.
While the fish are cleaning the turtles snorkelers and scuba divers get a great opportunity to snap a photo or just enjoy watching these amazing animals.
The Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles (honu) can weight up to seven hundred (700) pounds and live up to eighty (80) years in the wild. Although you may think turtles are slow you will change your mind if you see one swim away as they can swim up to 25 mile per hour.
Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles are endangered species and federally protected. Please respect our turtles by not touching or harassing them. Fines can be thousands of dollars if you are caught harassing or trying to ride a sea turtle.
If you are an experience diver jump on a long range trip while scuba diving Kona Hawaii. These trips will offer the best chance to see pelagic species such as large jacks, Manta Rays, Hammer Head Sharks and possibly even the occasional whale shark.
Some scuba diving companies on the Kona coast offer these trips but most require that participants be able to prove their experience. Make sure that you bring your log book along and that you have plenty of logged dives, some of which are recent.