Boats moored in the shallow waters of St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands.

The Virgin Islands’ Best Snorkeling

Good snorkeling is in the eye of the beholder, and though most people gravitate to reefs, sea grass and mangrove habitats are also fun to explore. With that in mind, here are the best places to snorkel in both the U.S. and British Virgin Islands.

A kitesurfer at Kanaha Beach Park in Central Maui.

Best Beaches in Central Maui

The undeveloped beaches of Central Maui are defined by wind, waves, and water sports. You won’t find any tiki bars or activities stands, but there are long stretches of undeveloped beaches where the world’s best watermen hang out.

Surfboard rack on the ocean shore in Waikiki Beach, Honolulu, Hawaii.

Surfing Lessons and Outfitters in Waikiki

You’ll find surfing is a way of life in Waikiki. There’s a long history here of welcoming visitors to learn how to catch a break and ride the big one that continues on today with several surf schools offering private, group, and customized surf tours for reasonable prices, as well as boards and gear.

A woman sits cross-legged on the beach with her surfboard.

Surfing Lessons and Rentals in South Maui

In South Maui, you’ll find plenty of outfitters and instructors ready to give you a lesson or set you up with some gear based on your level of skill. Since choosing which school or outfitter to go with is more of a challenge, here’s all the info you need to make it easy.

Windsurfing Maui on a beautiful sunny day.

Kitesurfing and Windsurfing Lessons in Central Maui

Since Maui can offer some of the most exhilarating, yet challenging, conditions for windsurfing and kitesurfing, those who want to pick up the sports can save themselves hours of frustration by taking lessons from a pro. Here are schools in the area, the packages they offer, and rental shops for gear.

A sea turtle swims off Olowalu, Maui.

Dive Sites and Operators in Lahaina, Maui

The best dive sites in Lahaina are an artificial reef and an old whaling wreck, but there are plenty of other great spots for both novice and experienced divers. Here’s where to go, along with the handful of dive boats that operate out of the area and what they offer.

O‘ahu’s leeward coast is a snorkeler’s dream come true.

Leeward O‘ahu Snorkeling and Diving

When the surf is flat and the ocean is calm, O‘ahu’s leeward coast is a underwater dream come true: anywhere you can get into the water is a good snorkel spot, and divers enjoy countless reefs, wrecks, and rock formations to explore. Hit up a rental shop or outfitter and jump in!

A speckled tropical fish in the reef at Honolua Bay.

Scuba Diving in West Maui

Scuba diving in West Maui involves one of two options: Departing from a west side harbor for an excursion to Lana‘i or diving along the West Maui shoreline. Here are dive sites and dive operators for both.

If you’re staying in Wailea, there are stand-up operators along Wailea Beach.

Stand-up Paddling in South Maui

For stand-up paddling in South Maui, there are plenty of instructors and outfitters ready to show you the ropes. Kihei is one of the best spots on the island hands-down, and you’ll find other good stand-up paddling around Wailea and beyond. Here’s where to go for lessons, rentals, and more.