Whale watching is one of the most popular things to do in Maui, and there's no surprise why. West Maui, in particular, is one of the best spots in Hawaii to catch a glimpse of the majestic humpback whale. While you can certainly watch from the shore, a whale watching excursion is one of the best ways to experience whale watching in West Maui.
Tips for Whale Watching Maui
The Maui whale watching season is November through April when more than 10,000 humpback whales journey from the cooling waters of Alaska to Maui to mate and give birth.
Go as early as you can in the morning. Typically the mornings are calmer making it easier to spot spouts in the water.
Oftentimes you'll hear whales before you see them. Whales breathe fairly loudly because of the large size of their lungs and the funneling of air that goes out their blowhole.
Maui Whale Watching Tours
Ultimate Whale Watch & Snorkel
Ultimate Whale Watch & Snorkel hosts small group rafting trips to get up close with whales, as well as dolphins, turtles, tropical fish, and more. This company uses small, low to the water rafts. You can go on a two-hour whale watch, 1.5-hour whale watch, VIP whale watch, and 3-hour whale watch.
Maui Reef Adventures
Maui Reef Adventures offers whale watching trips in small groups. Each tour is two hours and is capped at 30 people for an intimate experience. Expert guides provide education about whale behavior aboard the rafts. Be sure to take advantage of the hydrophone, which allows you to listen below the water surface to hear whales communicate.
Blue Maui is owned by award-winning Sail Maui, which has been a trusted name in Maui for more than 20 years. Departing from Ka'anapali Beach, Blue Maui whale watching tours run from December 15 to April 15. Using fast and stable charter boats, Blue Maui tours are dedicated to comfort even in harsh conditions.
Makai Adventures starts seasonal whale watching tours December 1 through April 15, departing from Lahaina Harbor. The two-hour whale watching tours are limited to small groups of no more than 20 people for a personalized experience. Makai Adventures uses large, spacious boats with no age restrictions, cushioned seating, and shade. There is also an onboard hydrophone to hear the whales underwater.
Maui Kayak Adventures
Maui Kayak Adventures offers three-hour whale watching and four-hour whale watching and snorkeling tours. Get up close with whales on these kayak adventures. Capped at eight people per tour Maui Kayak Adventures and are offered January through March. Tours take place from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and are limited to guests age 6 and older.