Mini Guide to Whale Watching in Maui 101

When to Whale Watch?

Whale Watching in Maui is seasonal December to April, so plan your tropical vacation during the months of whale migration. Best time to whale watch in Maui is the month of February when most of the whales are in the Maui Nui Basin. It’s estimated 12,000 – 14,000 humpback whales will make their way to Maui this season.

What is Whale Watching?

Humpback whales migrate from Alaska to warmer waters every winter, making Maui one of their top destinations. The waters between the island of Maui, Kaho’olawe, Moloka’i and Lana’i become one of the top places in the world to watch whales display behavior related to dating, mating, birthing, teaching and playing! Humpback whales can be up to 40 feet and weigh up to 40lbs and can move in competition pods of up to 50 animals, making it a spectacular display of churning water and whale tails! Tour boats are not permitted to approach whales closer than 100 yards, but often the whales come closer, “mugging” the boat and giving spectators an amazing show!

2hr whale watch maui hawaii

Where to Whale Watch?

The Maui Nui Basin has been designated as the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale Sanctuary which means the waters become protected so humpback whales can go about their winter activities with little interruption from outside influences. Whale Watch Tours departing from Lahaina Harbor take guests into the Maui Nui Basin to observe humpback whales in their natural habitat. Check out boat tours in Lahaina, Maui for the best whale watching tours.

How to Whale Watch?

Whale watch from shore with a pair of binoculars or hop on a boat for a closer encounter. Whale Watching Tours operating out of Lahaina Harbor will take guests right into the Whale Sanctuary waters. Choose an outfit that supports conservancy, research and marine naturalist guides. Tours should be fun and educational! It’s important to bring a camera with you, professional, iphone or gopro, to capture those amazing whale encounters. Even though Maui is tropical, our winter weather can be on the cooler side so also recommend bringing a light jacket, hat, sunglasses and reef safe sunscreen.

1.5 hr whale watch in maui hawaii

Book a Tour Today!

Most importantly, take time to enjoy one of the last great animal migrations left and have fun doing it! Book a tour with us today.

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