FAQs

Where do you sail from and where do you go?

We operate out of Haleiwa Harbor, on the North Shore of Oahu. We sail along the North Shore and out into the deeper waters. We do not circumnavigate Oahu or sail around to the West Side. This would be a very long sail with rough upwind sailing on the way home.

How far is Haleiwa from Waikiki?

It’s about 1 hour driving time from Waikiki, via H1 and H2. Please see our Directions for more information

What time of year can I expect to see whales in Hawaii?

The humpback whales migrate to Hawaii from December to May every year. Whale watching tours in Hawaii are during these months. Exact start and finish of the season varies each year, depending on when the whales make their migration.

How close do we get to the whales?

You will see breaches blows anywhere from miles away to a hundred yards off the side of the boat. Sometimes even closer, but that would be only if the whales move in on their own for a closer look. We always do our best to provide you with a great vantage point for observation without harassment to the whales, as the coast surrounding the Hawaiian Islands is supposed to be their peaceful winter sanctuary. And being chased and herded by motor boats is not the whales idea of fun.

Do you have Hawaii snorkeling tours all year round?

No, we do not have Hawaii snorkeling tours year round. The snorkeling Hawaii tours are during the summer months (June-Sept) , and the whale watching Hawaii tours are during whale season, which is December to May. The whale watching tours do not include snorkeling.

What kind of experience do I need for a snorkeling or whale watching tour?

None! The only things you need to enjoy our sailing trips are a sense of adventure and an appreciation for the ocean. We will provide all snorkeling gear and safety instructions.

Do you always see dolphins?

We often see dolphins, but not every day. Like all wild animals, it is up to them when they want to be seen. On lucky days they will come right up to the boat and play.

Is Hawaii sailing on a catamaran different than traditional sailing?

Catamarans are smoother riding than single hulled vessels. Our 40′ catamaran, the Ho’o Nanea, is the perfect size for a Hawaii sailing adventure. The sailing catamaran is Coast Guard certified for 21 passengers, and all of our tours are a max passenger count of 19. With this intimate group, we are able to give all of our passengers customized service.

What sort of marine life can I expect to see while snorkeling or sailing?

There is never a lack of Hawaii marine life on our sailing trips. During whale season, it is almost certain we will see the majestic humpback whales as they frolic in our warm Hawaiian waters. We often find the spinner dolphins, and nearly every day the Honu, or Hawaiian sea turtle, stops by for a visit. On our Hawaii snorkeling tours, we see a myriad of diverse reef ecology beneath the surface as well as sea turtles.

Can I bring my children with me on my sailing trip?

Of course! We have special rates for children. Whale watching in Hawaii is a wonderful family adventure. It is also a great educational experience for all members of the family.

Why is there an age restriction?

We do not have an age restriction. Our boat is friendly to all ages, but we do require children to wear a life jacket. And infants to be held at all times by a life jacket wearing adult. We provide all life jackets on board.

Do you provide lunch and beverages?

All of our tours include complementary beverages. Our 4 hr. morning snorkel tour includes a complete deli lunch.

What should I bring on my Hawaii sailing, whale watching or snorkeling tour?

Be prepared for lots of fun! You should be prepared for the warm Hawaiian sun, and the occasional passing shower. Please bring a light jacket, your camera, sunscreen, a hat and your bathing suit.

Can I get seasick during your sailing trips?

Our catamaran is very stable and few people get seasick. However, if you are prone to sea sickness, or have never been on a boat, it would be wise to take a sea sickness preventative at least one hour before the trip.

How far in advance should I book my tour?

The earlier you book your Hawaii whale watching or Hawaii snorkeling tour, the better! Especially if you have a larger group. Sometimes there is space available on very short notice, so make sure you check with us no matter when you have the idea to book. If you are inquiring for dates that are within the next week, it would be best to call direct for availability, instead of booking vie email.

Can I charter the whole boat?

Of course. We have special charter and group prices. Contact us for cost and availability.

How do I make a reservation?

You can book online or call us directly at (808) 351.9371 and we will book your tour and answer all you questions.

How do I get there?

See our directions page for a map and driving directions. Most people rent a car for the day and explore the North Shore and Haleiwa after their Sailing tour.

Is there a cancellation policy?

All cruises and tours have a 24-hour notice of cancellation policy. Any cancellation with less than 24 hours notice will not receive a refund. Those paying with vouchers (Groupon, Living Social, etc.) will forfeit their vouchers with a late cancellation. 20% fee for rescheduling within 24-hour period. Customers will receive a full refund with 24 hours notice of cancellation.

Customers will also receive a full refund in case of operator cancellation due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances (i.e. lack of participation) Weather conditions are decided at the boat harbor.

Private charters require 168-hour (7 Day) notice for refund. 20% fee for ALL canceled Private tours.

Where can we rent underwater cameras, wetsuits and prescription masks?

We provide regular masks and snorkels in small, medium and large sizes on the boat. We do not provide wetsuits. We have the one-time use underwater cameras for sale on board. But if you are looking for something more substantial and would like to rent special equipment contact:

In Haleiwa: Surf ‘N Sea
www.surfnsea.com
Email: surfnsea@surfnsea.com
Ph: 1-800-899-SURF (7873)

In Honolulu: Snorkel Bob’s
www.snorkelbob.com
Email: snorkelbob1@snorkelbob.com
Ph: (808) 735-7944

Is there anything else to do in the area for those in my party that are not going on the boat?

Absolutely. The harbor is surrounded by beautiful public beaches. The harbor is located within walking distance of lots of great shops, eateries and site seeing in Haleiwa town.