Coral Gardens is renowned for the incredibly beautiful and massive coral heads of several different varieties. Coastal Living Magazine called it one of the world’s top ten snorkel sites.
Coral Gardens is a unique, beautiful natural reef formation that is located in a naturally protected bay, which provides a canopy of hard coral that is loaded with a multitude of nooks and crannies. These make the perfect dwelling place for a spectacular array of marine life. It’s an ideal, medium to shallow depth snorkeling location because the seabed slopes gently away from the shoreline along the West Maui Mountains which makes it the ideal spot for the beginner and intermediate snorkeler.
Coral Gardens is home to Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles, hundreds of Hawaiian fish like: Parrot Fish, Angel Fish, Trigger Fish and Butterfly Fish, Crabs, Octopus and a variety of Eels are also full time residents also.
Occasionally, we see an endangered Hawaiian Monk seal here, basking in the sun on the rocky shore.
Maui Classic Charters was one of the original boat companies to first explore this treasured habitat and because of this, we were able to secure one of the premium mooring spots.
You are able to snorkel right on top of the most spectacular reef formations that is bustling with marine life!
For a humpback, the purpose for this exciting display of power is not completely understood, but there are some interesting suggestions. Young whales likely breach as a form of play or to develop their muscles. The whales actions are a learned behavior, which would make sense when you see the mother breach with the calf following many times over. Adults likely breach in certain circumstances to transmit a message to members of their group. In fact, as breaching requires a significant amount of energy, a whale may breach to demonstrate its physical abilities; a very convincing signal. Less often, it seems that there are other explanations for breaching. It could be a technique to help cetaceans feed by stunning or scaring prey. It could be a good way of getting rid of external parasites. It could also be a method for inhaling water-free air in rough weather. Who knows? What is certain is that this behaviour is spectacular for those observing it from the surface.
Every winter, when storms sweep through the North Pacific and the ocean gets particularly chilly, humpback whales head south—specifically to the warm waters of Hawaii’s Au’Au Channel alongside Maui. And if you’re hoping to catch a glimpse of these graceful behemoths, January through mid-March is the best time of year to see them!
There are a number of great certainties in life; the sun will set each night, Old Faithful will continue to blow, the humpback whales will return to Maui every year And people will go to see them! As cliché as it sounds, it’s absolutely true. Year after year, thousands of whales frequent the Hawaiian Islands to mate and give birth in the warm tropical waters. There’s something so amazing and majestic about watching a 40 ft long, 40 ton whale as it launches itself out of the water, putting on an aerial show for tens of thousands of onlookers every year.
The waters of Maui have long been the favored vacation spot of these massive marine mammals. During Whale season,we are one of the few companies that combine a snorkeling excursion with the exciting experience of viewing whales! enjoy all the fun of a snorkeling trip with the awe- inspiring show of the humpback whales! Our crew grills up the best burgers and chicken on Maui and serves you your choice of beverages while you spend a lazy afternoon snorkeling and enjoying the water slide!Viewing these majestic creatures from our whale watching boats is one of the most exciting things you will ever do! While on board,our Marine Naturalists and knowledgeable crew will enlighten and educate you about these wonderful creatures.
Every year from December through March the North Pacific Humpback Whales migrate to the warm tropical waters of Hawaii. The coastal waters of Maui by far, enjoys the largest concentration of these amazing animals and is some of the best in the world ,and as good as it gets! .
Sightings of these playful creatures, which grow as large as 50 feet and weigh about one ton per foot, on our afternoon snorkeling trip are quite regular!
Witness a mother whale frolic with her calf, or a full-grown adult breach out of the water. During your whale watch cruise these amazing animals will often display themselves in full glory, giving you the ultimate whale watching on Maui experience.
Some common behavior displayed on a whale watching trip includes blowing and spy hopping. They’ll also slap their tails, believed to be an act of communication and to demonstrate their individual strength. Spy hopping is when the humpback whales come high out of the water to literally have a look around at the world above.
A mature North Pacific Humpback Whale averages about 40ft in length & weighs about 40 tons, although can grow up to 16 meters or 52ft long. Their heavy bodies can weigh up to 50 tons. The heart alone is about 400lbs or more. The size of these whales makes them hard to miss, especially when they swim in groups. Female whales are slightly larger, in order to defend themselves and their nursing calves from the more aggressive males.
It is common during the Maui whale watching season to find large competitive groups (pods) of male humpback whales jousting for the opportunity to mate with a single female. Watching them is an exciting experience, as they wrestle with each other for the position to mate.
The female humpback whales with new born calves are particularly vulnerable to the advances of the males during the Maui whale watching season. Sometimes during our whale watch we are mugged (an affectionate term), by the female and her calf as she uses our large yacht to hide under in an attempt to ditch the hopeful males. Other times curiosity causes them to come closer to us. It’s the ultimate whale watching experience where photo opportunities create cherished memories. Join us for the best Maui whale watching for the memories of a lifetime! The North Pacific Humpback Whale is a baleen whale (toothless), declared as an endangered and protected species.
Humpback whales migrate in the thousands from the Gulf of Alaska to and around the Hawaiian Islands, and in particular the island of Maui, creating the perfect Maui whale watching experience. The island of Maui offers sheltered water, where the females can more safely give birth and raise their young.
Whales are mammals and the calves are fed with their mother’s milk. While suckling, it is believed they may be safer from predators in the sheltered Maui waters, as opposed to the open ocean or less protected seas.
Whale watching in Maui is as good as it gets, with the opportunity on any given trip to see numerous animals displaying a variety of interesting and memorable behaviors.
It is not uncommon for the whales to approach us as we sit idle in the water. Close encounters initiated by the whales are common on a whale watching tour in Maui.During the Maui whale watching tour, you might see a young calf swimming beside its mother. The newborn calves are about 14 feet long. When you see them, you have definitely experienced some of the best whale watching. They are not small, even when newborn.The mother stays with her offspring for about one year, feeding it with up to 100 gallons of milk every day. Life span has been discussed and not agreed upon by most researchers. No one knows how long humpbacks live, but bowhead whales (a cousin) have been proven to live well beyond 200 years!
To make your whale watch cruise in Maui even better, we’re going to take you on a snorkel adventure where you will enjoy snorkeling at one of Maui’s beautiful coral reefs. Whale Watching and snorkeling on the same cruise is the perfect pairing of the two most popular ocean adventures on Maui.
We look forward to seeing you soon!
Each winter the North Pacific Humpack Whales migrate to the tropical waters surrounding the Hawaiian Islands from the cold waters of Alaska. Here they breed, calve and nurse their young. They are the fifth largest in the family of whales with a mature Humpback usually between 43 to 45 ft. long and weighing around 90,000 pounds. At birth, they weigh an average of 1.5 tons and are usually 10-16 ft. in length. They grow very fast and nearly double their length during their first year. Baby humpacks will be nursed for nearly 6 months with mother’s milk that’s almost 50% fat. The number of Humpacks in Hawaiian waters is increasing significantly every year. Up until 1996 they were hunted into near extinction, with the count thought to be less than 1,500. That year the International Whaling Commission introduced a ban on commercial humpback whaling. Current counts indicate that there are now 18,000-20,000 of the North Pacific Humpback Whales. In our area we will see anywhere from 5,000-7,000 throughout the season!
The Spinner Dolphins have been spotted all over Maaalea Bay this week. They have visited the Maui Magic in La Perouse and the South Maui Coast and both the Four Winds and the Maui Magic got a chance to hang out with them just outside of Molokni Crater this morning. It’s been beautiful weather in beautiful Maui so come on out a play in the water with us! Check out our websites, www.mauiclassiccharters.com and www.fourwindsmaui.com to make a reservation!
We love snorkeling at Olowalu on both the Four Winds and the Maui Magic. The Four Winds visits this particular spot when the weather conditions are right on our afternoon snorkel. The Maui Magic makes it there occassionally for their second spot on the morning excursion. When it’s clear like this, it’s absolutley phenominal and there are always heaps of turtles!
There’s its diet, which consists primarily of algae taken from pieces coral ripped from a reef with their tusk-like teeth that are fused together forming a beak, hence the “parrot fish”. The coral is ground down with their teeth in the fishes’ throats and made into sand. Much of the sand in the parrot fish’s range is actually the ground-up, undigested coral they excrete. There’s its gender, which they can change repeatedly throughout their lives, and their coloration and patterns, which are absolutely amazing and vary greatly, even between the males, females, and juveniles of the same species.
Finally, there are the pajamas. Every night, certain species of parrot fish envelope themselves in a transparent cocoon made of mucous secreted from an organ on their head. Scientists think the cocoon masks their scent, making them harder for nocturnal predators, like moray eels, to find.
“The crew was so helpful and fun! They made everyone feel safe and comfortable the entire time. Snorkeling at Molokini was incredibly clear and quite breathtaking! We will definitely recommend Maui Classic Charters to our friends who visit Maui! Thanks guys!
P.S. The kaluha pork was oh soooo good!”
One of our frequent snorkel spots, other then Molokini Crater, on the Maui Magic Am Snorkel Trip is called Turtle Arches. This location gets it’s name for it’s amazing coral formations that are shaped like arches. We visit this location to see the Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles, beautiful coral, and heaps of fish!