This Kona whale watch departs from the slips of Honokohau Marina, which is just north of Kailua-Kona in the direction of Waikoloa. As you scour the coastline in search of a spout, your captain will discuss everything from Hawaiian history to the island’s unique geology, all while scanning the cobalt horizon for signs of a breach or a splash.
In winter, humpback whales travel here to these waters to mate and give birth to their young. The captain also serves as a naturalist and has a wealth of info on the whales, and also carries a hydrophone on board so you can hear the haunting and eerie song of whales singing underwater. In addition to pods of humpback whales, there’s also the chance you could see turtles, dolphins, manta rays or other marine life, and the Kona coast is also home to some lesser-known species of whales.
Depending on where the whales are spotted, you’ll also have the chance to see coastal sea caves and small, volcanic lava tubes, and hear some tales about how the island is still continuing to grow.
Since the boat only holds up to 16 passengers you’re guaranteed a personalized experience. Although the smaller Zodiac raft can be bouncy, and isn’t recommended for anyone pregnant or with back or neck problems, it's able to cut through the water without the stomach-churning rock. Many say it navigates the waters of the Kona coast better than any other style of boat.