When you think of snorkeling in Maui, Hawaii, you want to find the perfect spot with vibrant reefs and an abundance of marine life. Look no further than the outcropping of reefs between Ulua and Mokapu Beaches, right in front of the Andaz in Wailea. This area is not only beautiful but also convenient, with ample parking and easy beach entry. As you snorkel your way along the gradual drop off, you’ll encounter a variety of reef life, from schools of colorful fish to bright red pencil urchins. And if you’re an experienced snorkeler or scuba diver, venture further out to the deeper reef, where you’ll find a turtle cleaning station and marvel at the sight of green sea turtles relaxing as fish eat the algae off their shells. Just be cautious of the Keawe thorns when entering from Ulua Beach – walk carefully from the sand to the water, or opt for the entrance at Mokapu Beach. Prepare for an unforgettable snorkeling experience that combines ease, stunning views, and an abundance of ocean life.

For more information and a visual guide to this remarkable snorkeling spot, check out the video shot by Maui Guide a few days ago. Here, you’ll get a closer look at the reefs between Ulua and Mokapu Beaches, providing you with the perfect introduction to your next snorkeling adventure. Learn from the experts and explore the wonders that await you beneath the crystal-clear waters of Maui. Whether you’re a seasoned snorkeler or a first-timer, this is a spot that promises something truly special. So gear up, get ready to make unforgettable memories, and dive into the beauty of Ulua and Mokapu Snorkeling & Scuba. And if you’re looking for more amazing activities and tours in Hawaii, be sure to check out Hawaii Activities and Tours, the best Hawaiian activity tour company that has something for everyone.


Ulua / Mokapu Beaches in Wailea, Maui

If you’re looking for a fantastic snorkeling and scuba diving spot in Maui, look no further than Ulua / Mokapu Beaches in Wailea. Located in South Maui, these beaches offer a convenient and stunning location for underwater exploration.


Ample parking

One of the great things about Ulua / Mokapu Beaches is the ample parking available for visitors. You won’t have to worry about driving around endlessly to find a parking spot. This makes it easy and stress-free to access the beach and enjoy your snorkeling or scuba diving adventure.

Easy beach entry

Getting into the water at Ulua / Mokapu Beaches is a breeze. You won’t have to struggle with rocky shorelines or steep drop-offs. Instead, you’ll find a gentle slope that allows for easy beach entry. This makes it a perfect spot for beginners or those who prefer a more relaxed entrance into the water.

Gradual drop off with reef life

As you venture further into the water at Ulua / Mokapu Beaches, you’ll experience a gradual drop-off. This means that you can slowly explore the depths and discover the incredible marine life that resides on the reef. From vibrant corals to schools of fish, there’s no shortage of underwater wonders to admire.

Showers and restrooms

After a day of snorkeling or scuba diving, it’s always nice to have access to showers and restrooms. Ulua / Mokapu Beaches provide these amenities, allowing you to rinse off the saltwater and freshen up before heading home. It’s a small touch that adds to the overall convenience and comfort of this snorkeling spot.

Turtle cleaning station

For those who love sea turtles, Ulua / Mokapu Beaches has a special treat in store. If you venture out further to the deeper reef, you’ll find a turtle cleaning station. This is where green sea turtles come to have fish eat the algae off their shells. It’s a unique sight to witness and adds an extra element of excitement to your snorkeling or scuba diving experience.

Depth of reef

Between 40 and 60 feet from the surface

If you’re an experienced snorkeler or scuba diver looking to explore the depths, Ulua / Mokapu Beaches have got you covered. The deeper reef is located between 40 and 60 feet from the surface, offering a thrilling underwater adventure. Here, you’ll have the chance to encounter not only sea turtles but also a diverse range of marine life.

Where to Snorkel in Maui, Hawaii  |  Ulua / Mokapu Snorkeling  Scuba

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Marine Life

Green sea turtles

One of the biggest attractions of Ulua / Mokapu Beaches is the abundance of green sea turtles. These graceful creatures can often be found lounging on the reef, with fish munching on the algae on their shells. It’s a truly magical experience to swim alongside these gentle giants and observe them in their natural habitat.

Schools of fish

The waters surrounding Ulua / Mokapu Beaches are teeming with schools of fish, creating a vibrant and colorful underwater world. From bright tropical fish to larger species, you’ll be in awe of the variety and beauty that awaits you. Don’t forget to bring an underwater camera to capture these incredible moments.

Colorful reefs

The reefs at Ulua / Mokapu Beaches are a sight to behold. Bursting with color and life, they create a stunning backdrop for your snorkeling or scuba diving adventures. Take the time to explore every nook and cranny, and you’ll be rewarded with an up-close view of the intricate ecosystem that thrives beneath the surface.

Bright red pencil urchins

Among the marine life that calls Ulua / Mokapu Beaches home, you’ll also find bright red pencil urchins. These spiky creatures add a pop of color to the coral reefs and provide an interesting sight to behold. Just be careful not to get too close, as their sharp spines can cause discomfort if touched.


Wary of Keawe thorns from the trees at Ulua Beach

When entering the water from Ulua Beach, it’s important to be aware of Keawe thorns that may be scattered on the sand. These thorns can be sharp and painful if stepped on, so it’s best to tread carefully and wear water shoes or sandals for protection.

Careful walking from the sand to the water

The transition from the sand to the water at Ulua Beach can sometimes be a bit challenging. Uneven terrain and small rocks can make it tricky to walk comfortably. Take your time and watch your step to avoid any slips or falls. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Alternative entrance from Mokapu Beach

If the entrance from Ulua Beach seems too difficult or crowded, there is an alternative entrance from Mokapu Beach. Simply walk along the shoreline until you reach the area between the two beaches. This entrance may offer a smoother path to the water, depending on the conditions of the day.

Scuba Diving

Opportunity for scuba diving experience

In addition to snorkeling, Ulua / Mokapu Beaches also provide an opportunity for scuba diving. With the deeper reef and the chance to encounter sea turtles, it’s an ideal spot for divers of all skill levels. If you’ve always wanted to try scuba diving or are a seasoned diver looking for a new adventure, don’t miss out on the underwater wonders of Ulua / Mokapu Beaches.

Snorkeling Tips

Proper snorkeling equipment

Before venturing into the water at Ulua / Mokapu Beaches, make sure you have the proper snorkeling equipment. This includes a mask, snorkel, and fins. Having the right gear will enhance your experience and allow you to explore the underwater world with ease.

Be mindful of marine life and coral

As you snorkel at Ulua / Mokapu Beaches, it’s essential to be mindful of the marine life and coral. Avoid touching or disturbing the coral reefs, as they are delicate and can be easily damaged. Keep a safe distance from the marine life and observe them from a respectful standpoint, allowing them to carry on with their natural behaviors.

Stay close to your snorkeling buddy

Whenever you go snorkeling, it’s important to have a buddy with you. This ensures that someone is always looking out for your safety and can assist you if needed. Stay close to your snorkeling buddy and communicate throughout your underwater adventure to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for all.

Practice good diving etiquette

When snorkeling at Ulua / Mokapu Beaches, it’s essential to practice good diving etiquette. This includes not chasing or touching marine life, avoiding standing or touching the coral reefs, and being aware of your surroundings. By following these guidelines, you’ll help protect the underwater ecosystem and preserve it for future generations to enjoy.

Best Time to Snorkel

Early morning or late afternoon to avoid crowds

If you prefer a quieter and more peaceful snorkeling experience, it’s best to visit Ulua / Mokapu Beaches early in the morning or late in the afternoon. During these times, the beaches are typically less crowded, allowing you to immerse yourself in the beauty of nature without distractions.

Check weather and sea conditions

Before heading out to snorkel at Ulua / Mokapu Beaches, always Check the weather and sea conditions. Strong currents or rough waves can make it challenging and unsafe to get in the water. It’s better to reschedule your snorkeling adventure than to risk your safety in unfavorable conditions.

Other Snorkeling Spots in Maui

Napili Bay

If you’re looking to explore more snorkeling spots in Maui, consider visiting Napili Bay. This stunning bay is known for its calm and clear waters, perfect for snorkeling. You’ll have the chance to encounter colorful fish, sea turtles, and even the occasional manta ray.

Molokini Crater

For a truly unique snorkeling experience, head to Molokini Crater. This crescent-shaped volcanic crater is a marine sanctuary and offers crystal-clear waters teeming with marine life. Snorkeling here feels like diving into an aquarium, with an abundance of tropical fish, colorful coral, and even reef sharks.

Honolua Bay

Located on the northwestern coast of Maui, Honolua Bay is a snorkeler’s paradise. The bay is known for its vibrant coral reefs, diverse marine life, and excellent visibility. With its picturesque surroundings and abundant underwater treasures, Honolua Bay is a must-visit for any snorkeling enthusiast.


Ulua / Mokapu Beaches offer a convenient location with diverse marine life, making it an excellent spot for snorkeling and scuba diving in Maui.

Whether you’re a beginner looking to dip your toes into the world of snorkeling or an experienced scuba diver seeking new underwater adventures, Ulua / Mokapu Beaches in Wailea, Maui should be at the top of your list. With ample parking, easy beach entry, and a gradual drop-off with reef life, it’s a snorkeler’s dream come true. The opportunity to encounter green sea turtles, schools of fish, colorful reefs, and bright red pencil urchins adds an extra layer of excitement to your underwater exploration. So grab your snorkeling gear, practice good diving etiquette, and dive into the magical world that awaits you at Ulua / Mokapu Beaches.