Shore diving in Honaunau, Big Island

It was my last dive in Hawaii, but I didn’t know it yet when I entered the water. I was supposed to dive next at Old Airport in Kona, but as the weather deteriorated during the day, it was my final one as I had plans to go in higher altitude to visit the Volcano National Park before flying back home.

In Big Island, it is important to go diving as early as you can, If possible after sunrise. The reason? The waves are calmer in the morning and get much bigger as the day goes by. Basically, when you see the surfers arriving on the beach, it is too late to go scuba diving.

On that day, I had planned to dive at Two Steps in the morning, go back to change the tanks at noon in Kona, and then go diving in the early afternoon at Old Airport, a famous shore dive site in Kona. In the meantime, the weather conditions had dramatically changed, the dive shop kindly warned me but I wanted to check the place even if it meant no diving. When I arrived at Kona Old Airport, surfers were already having fun with the waves. Game Over.

The shore dive site of Honaunau is nicknamed Two Steps because of the 2 tiny steps carved into the rock to make your entry. Because of the waves that day, entry and exit were delicate, especially with my underwater camera in hand, so please be careful.

The dive site starts with small coral pinnacles and patches of sand in shallow depths (about 10 m). This is where I came face to face with an adorable young green turtle. Beyond this shallow part, you quickly arrive on a drop-off with a steep slope going down to a sandy bottom at 30 m of depth. While the visibility was excellent and we saw 3 turtles that day, there were slightly less fish there compared to other sites I dived in Maui and Big Island. Still, it is a dive site that will make both beginners and advanced scuba divers happy thanks to an impressive marine topography.

My dive parameters: 29 m, 67 min, 27°C, 30 m visibility

What I really loved about diving in Two Steps was the nearby National Historical Park of Honaunau. It makes a perfect cultural surface interval to learn about the history and the ancient traditions of Hawaii. So don’t hesitate to bring two tanks to dive two steps twice to enjoy this stunning spot at its most.

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Posted by Florine

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