Maui Snorkeling Safety — Breaking Waves
Breaking waves are beautiful to look at, but unless you’re on a boogie board trying to catch one, it’s best to steer clear of the break zone while snorkeling in Maui. Even small waves can pack a punch and it's important to move through the break zone quickly when entering or exiting the water. Pay attention to what’s going on and don’t dawdle. A breaking wave can level you in an instant and tends to take the fun out of the day.
A good habit to develop before entering or exiting the water is to spend a few minutes watching the waves. Take note of where the waves are breaking, their size, and timing. Use this knowledge to pick a place to enter and time your movement through the breaking waves. If you happen to arrive at a spot with heavy surf, skip the idea of snorkeling altogether. It’s not only dangerous, but rough surf makes for lousy snorkeling. It kicks up sand and creates cloudy water. Your best advice is try another spot.
For a guide to all the best snorkel spots on Maui, pick up a copy of Mask, Fins, & Snorkel: The Adventure Guide to Maui's Best Snorkeling.