Big Island Divers
Big Island Divers
5
Scuba & SnorkellingSwim with DolphinsBoat ToursWater SportsEco Tours
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Monday
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Wednesday
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Friday
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Saturday
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Sunday
8:00 AM - 6:00 PM
About
Big Island Divers has been serving the Kona diving community since 1984. We offer a full-service diving experience, allowing you to relax and enjoy the underwater scenery. With 5 vessels and a crew of over 40, we accommodate divers or snorkelers of all experience levels and take great pride in providing unforgettable memories day after day. We love sharing our passion with others, and we offer a wide variety of certifications for beginners and advanced divers alike. Our knowledgeable and patient PADI and SSI instructors are here to help those wanting to take the first step in their dive education; experienced divers can enjoy progressing their skills with our extensive specialty course offerings list. Our newly-renovated, 2,000+ square foot retail space is fully stocked with every kind of equipment, apparel, dive accessory,and snorkel gear you need to enjoy the ocean.
Kailua-Kona, Hawaii
Meets animal welfare guidelines

Awards
Travelers' Choice
2023

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Travelers talk about
(373 reviews)

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

5.0
5.0 of 5 bubbles6,318 reviews
Excellent
5,654
Very good
370
Average
135
Poor
77
Terrible
82

Matt A
Sacramento, CA2 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2019
I originally signed up for a 2-night dive trip while on my honeymoon, one of which was a manta ray night dive. The manta dive was honestly one of the best experiences I've had while diving. We saw 3 really big mantas up close and the team on the boat were funny and provided a great experience. I even tipped the dive team since I had such a great time.

However, the manta ray dive was the only dive trip I was able to do since the lady I originally signed up with told me to arrive at 4:45, which is 2 hours after the 2-dive trip boat leaves the dock. I was an hour away from the dock so I was unable to shift up my arrival time without prior notice. I understand people make mistakes and I generally don't hold it against them. However, when she called to try to clarify, she insisted that I was wrong and that she told me the earlier time. She said she doubted I could get a refund for the difference but after repeatedly insisting she told me the wrong time, she spoke with management and I ended up getting a refund.

I would typically mark it lower than 4 stars for such bad customer service, but being that I did end up getting a refund and that the team on the boat were great, I only marked down one star. Attached is a picture of the document she gave me with the wrong time. Advice to the office staff, don't insist a customer is wrong and just acknowledge the possibility that you're wrong - it's really bad customer service.
Written January 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

CrewFever
Great Falls, VA44 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2022 • Friends
Great trip and wonderful service. We chose Big Island because it was the only company we could find that offered a single dive with Manta Rays. Other companies seemed to only have two dive trips … one on the reefs then moving to the night dive with mantas. This also worked out well for us in that one of our party was just a snorkler and the trip we booked was for snorklers and divers. Unfortunately we had to change to all four us snorkeling because we forgot about the elevation change between Kona and Hilo where we staying with friends. The dive shop switched the 3 of us to snorkeling without complaint and gladly refunded us the difference. On the day of the dive, check in at the offsite dive shop was easy and friendly. At the boat, the crew welcomed us with fresh pineapple and aloha greetings. We had 9 snorklers and 5 divers on board which was very comfortable. The trip to the site was only 30 minutes where upon arrival Ryan gave us a great introduction on how the dive would work and what we would be seeing as well as all the safety information. Our snorkeling guide, Liam, was excellent. Young, confident and pleasant. In the water he guided us to the first spot then moved us around for better viewing. While guides from other companies were like annoying cheerleaders, Liam focused on getting us to the right place and routinely and calmly checking with us to make sure all were okay. Then the Mantra Ray show exceeded expectations. After about 20 minutes of patiently waiting and moving about, the first of several Manta Rays did numerous somersaults right below our board. We were told not to touch them but the large Manta Rays didn’t get that memo, and they were within inches of us as they did their somersaults feeding on the abundant plankton. Absolutely amazing.
Back onboard the boat, we were served hot chocolate and cookies while enjoying a full moonlight ride back to the pier. Now as wonderful the trip was for us, there are things all the companies can’t control such as the sea state and number of Manta Ray sightings. But the things the company can control, Big Island Divers did a fantastic job for us.
Written June 14, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Thank you so much for the thoughtful and thorough review, the kind shout out to your divemaster and snorkel guide, and for choosing Big Island Divers. Those "somersaults" are simply magical! Come back and see us again soon.
Written June 16, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

nas421
Heber City, UT25 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021 • Family
We were on the Big Island for about a month and had multiple days/nights of diving. Big Island's Twilight Reef and Manata dive were a highlight of our stay. First and foremost, the manta rays are amazing. Big Island's dive team (Capt Brian, Dive Masters Hugh and Caitlyn) made this an amazing experience from start to end. This dive could devolve into a touristy troupe of feeding pelagic animals (I think several other operators do from what I saw), but the Big Island Team worked hard to educate the boat on the animals themselves. As a former PADI instructor, I can appreciate the thoroughness and attention to detail that this crew embodied. Just a first rate experience from start to end. It did not hurt that we saw THREE (yes, three or about 33% of the entire island population) monk seals on the surface or that four mantas showed up and were energetic the entire dive. My son and I will never forget this evening.
Written July 5, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Teresa F
2 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2022
Diving with the manta rays was a bucket list experience, an absolute wow!! Captain Alex and Dive Master Cosmo are exceptional people, who made this outing Outstanding. They shared such interesting information in a fun and exciting way and even let us listen to the nearby whales with an underwater microphone. They were respectful, kind and helpful. Our small boat experience couldn't have been better. The Dive company gets 4 stars though because the online booking company overcharged us, and it was hard to get that straightened out. We recommend calling directly to avoid the online booking fee. For Big Island Divers, we recommend more clearly disclosing the extra fees and taxes on the website and recommending phone in reservations to avoid the fee.
Written February 7, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Kevin S
Seattle, WA5 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019
Very fun experience! Unfortunately we didn't get to see any mantas, but mantas coming out are by chance. They did have a skunk policy which allows you be on another night time manta ray dive for free if the boat isn't full, or confirm another night time manta ray dive for 50% off.

The dive master and the crew were exceptional!
Written January 5, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Steve L
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2021 • Business
I spent the month of July on the big island and Dove multiple two tanks with big island divers.

The boats operated flawlessly, The boat captains did an exemplary job of keeping us safe, finding excellent dive sites with the assistance of the excellent dive masters.

We dove multiple two tanks, mantas, black water, harbor tiger sharks, beautiful reefs ( all in good shape ).

The office staff was incredibly helpful and flexible, loved dealing with them!

Our dive masters including Alex L and Hugh, gave excellent briefings, made sure our equipment was properly set up and working and made us feel intensely comfortable in the water.

With a large choice of dive companies, WE CHOSE THE RIGHT ONE!!!! Most highly recommend.
Written July 31, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Jeff N
18 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
Friday, January 10, 2020
After my third visit with Big Island Divers I feel happily compelled to update my earlier contribution to Trip Advisor.
This time, I did not feel simply treated like family, I was family. Not only did everyone anticipate my needs and wants – gear and locations to dive, but I saw all the divers provided the same helpful and energetic consideration I was privileged to receive.
The Black Water Plankton dive is not only a unique experience, but our Instructor provided an explanation of all we are doing and (might be) experiencing before we left the harbor. I have heard his introduction three times, learning more each time. The education he provides is “worth the price of admission” for sure.
Another Instructor, Ms. Katrina Peterson, provided a wondrous experience for me. Not only did she ask me if any of the dive sites were becoming boring for me (they were not), but she provided an experience for which I cannot thank her enough.
Katrina knew I was very much excited to see and photograph a Tiger Shark. While The Big Island is a most promising place to encounter one, so far I had come up empty. On our second dive one day, Katrina told me, “Jeff, you’ll see your Tiger Shark on this dive.” And indeed I did managing to capture some nice photographs.
After the Tiger had gone, Katrina swam over and gave me a big hug. Indeed Katrina Peterson made a quite memorable experience into a life-defining one. Seeing and photographing the shark, along with Katrina’s gesture, I most certainly will never forget.
If you are looking into diving on The Big Island, I cannot recommend Big Island Divers enthusiastically enough.
Jeff Neslen
Written January 10, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

MelyssaH
Miami, FL6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2021
One of the reasons I wanted to visit the Big Island was because of the Manta Ray dive. I had read reviews and decided to go with the Big Island divers, which did not disappoint. We went to the dive shop at 2:30 pm to check in and make sure we had everything. We were then directed to the marina where we would board the boat. All of our equipment was taken care of and ready for us. Dive Master John and Captain Perry were excellent and fun. We did our first dive in the same area where we would do the Manta Ray dive. The first dive was great just to get adjusted to the water and the swell - visibility was a little less than ideal - and we had been spoiled by our kayak and snorkeling trip at Kealakekua Bay earlier in the day. For the manta dive, there were about 6 other boats in the area. However, our boat was the last to dive down, which meant we got at least 20+ minutes where we were the only divers down there with *SEVEN* manta rays!! (At least that many). My flashlight died but it didn’t matter because of how the lights were set up. I had a front row seat to these magnificent creatures - on several occasions I felt like I had to duck a little to avoid actually being touched by the graceful bodies or wings of the rays! Dive Master John was great at making sure every one had a great view and experience. I can’t wait to see my photos and videos. Would absolutely recommend Big Island Divers!
Written February 8, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Eric N
Littleton, CO22 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2021 • Solo
I did the two take dive with Big Island Divers. The first dive was in the afternoon, and the second was the manta ray dive after sunset.

The manta dive was amazing. I can’t believe how big they were and we saw about a dozen of them. It was so awe inspiring as they gracefully swam only inches above our heads.

That dive was one of my favorite activities on Big Island from multiple visits.

That is the bulk of the rating alone. To do it again, I’d likely book with another dive operator. The crew weren’t particularly friendly or helpful and made it feel like we were an imposition to them as much as anything. The boat definitely was at capacity for divers and at times felt crowded, which was less than ideal.

There are so many dive operators doing manta ray dives that you could easily find another who will make you feel like you are more valued. I counted 13 other boats with divers and snorkelers when we were out.
Written January 1, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Carl K
New York11 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2021
Booked five days with Big Island Divers for a group of four and everything about the process was seamless; they were super processional and on top of it and the Manta Ranta Dive was one of the best we have ever done. We actually booked it twice in case the mantas didn't show up or weather got in the way and we're glad we did because the second show was even better than the first!

The Blackwater Diver was one of those things we weren't sure about ... but it was definitely a fun and different experience -- one of the most unique dives we've ever done
Written July 6, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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