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Afternoon whale watch Ma'alaea

Boulder, CO
Level Contributor
81 posts
12 reviews
Afternoon whale watch Ma'alaea

Looking at afternoon whale watch on Alii Naui (catamaran) out of Ma'alaea in a couple of weeks. Past experience from the shore there is the afternoons can get real windy/choppy in that area (I am guessing they probably head south though). Anyone have experience with that trip or other thoughts on the wind/chop concern? Thanks.

5 replies to this topic
Maui
Level Contributor
71,954 posts
18 reviews
1. Re: Afternoon whale watch Ma'alaea

The channel is rough in the afternoons.............I wouldn't do it.

Do a morning trip, it's a great way to start the day! You might look at the various rafts if you want a less expensive and fast trip.

Boulder, CO
Level Contributor
81 posts
12 reviews
2. Re: Afternoon whale watch Ma'alaea

Thank you

Maalaea, Hawaii
3 posts
3. Re: Afternoon whale watch Ma'alaea

Ma'alaea is one of the windiest spots on Maui which is why you see wind turbines there on the mountainside. But it's been unusually calm for the last couple of weeks and Ma'alaea Bay has been quite calm as well. The whales are out there frolicking, go see them!

Maui
Level Contributor
71,954 posts
18 reviews
4. Re: Afternoon whale watch Ma'alaea

Wait and see what the winds are where you get here. They can and do change!

A morning trip is much more likely to be calm.

Edited: 08 February 2016, 00:03
Nanaimo, Canada
Level Contributor
2,422 posts
7 reviews
5. Re: Afternoon whale watch Ma'alaea

Although I have not been aboard Alii Nui for a whale watch, I have enjoyed their afternoon snorkel trip to 'Turtle Point' (Olowalu) in early March.

That particular day the wind was blowing the dog off the chain in the harbour from the NE & funnelling down the valley from Kahului. Once we rounded MacGregor Point and headed north we were leeward & protected by the mountain/cliff side.

I don't know if they would routinely head N or S for whale watches, but my guess is that it would be weather & whale sighting dependant.

I found Alii Nui to be a very stable, well maintained boat.Tasty food/drink & capable, friendly crew.

If you opt for something in the afternoon, I would choose a catamaran over a power driven single hulled vessel. Do note though that most (all?) sailing cats do not raise their sails for whale watches to allow for better manoeuvrability.

Rafts are definitely a fun option & I while I agree with SW's morning and wait & see wind wise advice, your choices can get limited during high season. If certain dates/times/companies are desirable - book them for days early in your trip to allow for weather. Very small chance anything will have to be rescheduled, but it's always a risk. I always call the day before to reconfirm reservation & get the goods on the forecast. Read the canx policies too.

Be aware back issues can be a deterrent for rafts. No buns in ovens either, should your travelling companion(s) need to know.

If there have been sustained SW winds it's a whole new ballgame.

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