PacWhale Eco-Adventures
PacWhale Eco-Adventures
4.5
Scuba & SnorkellingDolphin & Whale Watching
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Monday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Tuesday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Wednesday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Thursday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Friday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Saturday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Sunday
6:00 AM - 9:00 PM
About
Cruise with the experts at PacWhale Eco-Adventures on Maui's top-rated ocean ecotours, based on 40 years of marine research and sustainable ecotourism experience. PacWhale has cruises for every style of adventure, including whale and dolphin watch ecotours, snorkel trips, sunset cocktail and sunset dinner cruises, holiday cruises, stargazing ecotours, and more. You'll cruise on ultra-stable, eco-friendly vessels with knowledgeable, friendly Certified Marine Naturalists. Choose PacWhale Eco-Adventures and make a difference: all profits support Pacific Whale Foundation's Research, Education and Conservation programs to protect marine wildlife and the ocean environment. Cruises depart from Ma'alaea harbor.
Maalaea, Hawaii
Meets animal welfare guidelines

Awards
Travelers' Choice
2023

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Tours and Tickets by PacWhale Eco-Adventures
Travelers talk about
(1,540 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

4.5
4.5 of 5 bubbles16,419 reviews
Excellent
13,477
Very good
1,667
Average
654
Poor
338
Terrible
283

Manonvacation
Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica8 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2020
I've been on trips with Pacific Whale Foundation and Captain Doug before, and they're always great. This time with pandemic restrictions in place I was very impressed with the precautions they put in place . Check in at the office was very organized and safe, with a staff member following each group to sanitize the ipad after each use, and of course masks were worn by all. On board, they had assigned seating, snacks delivered to you, and on-boarded and off-boarded in small groups . Two of the marine biologists on board who helped our area were especially friendly and efficient : Connor and "T". I would highly recommend Pacific Whale Foundation more than ever , with capacity reduced to 50% we felt very safe and had a wonderful day out. Even though the wind prevented us from anchoring safely at Molokini, Capt Doug took us to two locations along the Wailea and Makena coast that were great. Lots of Turtles. I also recommend the video cameras they offered for $40. The quality of the pics and video were really amazing! TIp - Membership in the. foundation got us a discount and preferred seating on board so I recommend that also.
Written November 16, 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.
Aloha Mike. We’re so happy that you enjoyed your snorkeling experience and hope we’ll see you out with us again in the future. Mahalo for your kind review!
Written November 17, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

nj1234970
Wilmington, DE6 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Family
Molokini Wild Side is one of our absolute favorite PacWhale excursions. This trip is unique because it goes to Molo as the second stop instead of the first, which makes a huge difference. Molokini has something like 26 mooring spots, and most mornings the crater is crowded with hundreds of snorkelers. By doing Molokini second, though, the PacWhale boat pretty much has the crater to itself - much more enjoyable than most other options! And they choose the first stop to maximize the chance of seeing turtles, which is pretty amazing too.

If conditions allow, they also go around to the back side of the crater and allow the more confident snorkelers to snorkel there. This is also unique to this excursion - it's a 300 ft wall and it's mind blowing! It's something most people never get to see.

We have done many trips with PacWhale over the years, because they are well planned and an excellent value. We would recommend any of PacWhale's trips, and Molokini Wild Side is one of the best.
Written February 6, 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.

Climber61437550335
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
This was my third whale watching trip, second in Maui and WOW. We ended up not venturing too far out from the harbor as we kept getting mugged. If you are unfamiliar with this term, we had a champion group of adult male humpbacks (about 6-8) coming right up to our boat back and forth for an hour!!! Talk about a gift from nature. Our main guide said this was the most amazing whale watching trip she has ever been on in her career. It was a magical experience. Every time I have gone out with the Pacific Whale Foundation we have seen amazing whale activity. I love the work they also do for whales and helping to increase the whale population. It is well worth spending a little more (and really, it isn't that much) to support an amazing foundation and experience some ocean magic.
Written February 8, 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.
Aloha. We are so glad to hear that you enjoyed your whalewatching ecotour with us. Mahalo for your review!
Written February 10, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Mobile13244665160
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
This was our second tour with PacWhale. The guides are incredibly knowledge and genuinely friendly. The Skipper of the boat was great and we felt totally safe the whole time. Plus they got us onto dozens of whales and even put a mic in the water so we could hear the whales talking! We saw so, so many whales and learned about them at the same time. Things like how far they travel (3,000 miles) and that they don't eat during the entire trip! We learned about how much they weigh (90,000 pounds!) and what life is like for them. This was such an enjoyable and educational tour and I would highly recommend PacWhale for any age group or occasion. We will be back to Maui and will go with them again for our third time!
Written February 14, 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.
Aloha. We love to hear that you enjoyed your whalewatching ecotour with our crew! Mahalo for visiting us.
Written February 17, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Legacies of the Pacific
Oakland, CA16 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2021
We appreciated the knowledgeable whale tour. This was the first time on a whale watching tour, and I highly recommend to go see them in action. it is amazing! We chose this group through our affiliation of my timeshare, however I wished I could have seen more locals employed by this foundation. The team was very friendly, knowledgeable, and engaging; not too much dead silence. I would recommend this company if you have small children, need a restroom, need snacks, or get sea sick because this is a larger vessel. If you want a more up front and personal kind of feel, then go with a smaller vessel but they have no bathrooms or other amenities. Also, I could have passed on the unflattering two second $20 souvenir photos ($10 a piece) but I like to support local and it was my sister's Birthday. Overall it was a great experience.
Written February 23, 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.
We so appreciate that you chose to come out with us whale watching and support our efforts to protect our ocean environment. We're so glad you enjoyed the experience and were able to learn interesting facts about these amazing giants of the sea from our Certified Marine naturalists. We'll hope to have you out with us again on your next visit to Maui.
Written February 23, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Judith Blyckert
Brantome en Perigord City, France36 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
Oh WOW! We had a FABULOUS experience on our Whale Foundation adventure! From beginning to ending we were in the midst of these stunning giants as we watched them roll, flap their tails and fins, and JUMP!!! And our eco crew members kept us well informed the whole 2 hours. When Cole put the microphone under our boat we were treated to whale song! We’ve been on many other whale sales and this one is tied for first place with our outrigger journey a few years ago. This is an affordable, educational whale watch on a catamaran designed to hold just 55 people. And thank you to our lady captain whose boating skills are beyond impressive!
Written January 30, 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.
Aloha. We are so happy to hear that you enjoyed your whalewatching ecotour with our crew. Mahalo for joining us!
Written February 3, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

mdlask
Chicago, IL1 contribution
1.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Couples
I would definitely recommend going to a beach before paying for whale watching trip. We had better views of the whales from the shore at Kalama beach than when we took a 2 hour ‘tour’. Each time there was a ‘sighting’ everyone just rushed to that side and crammed together. The guide was in training and did not know much, the supervisor didn’t step in to assist either. They claim a 97% success rate, but that includes ‘blows’, which you can see anywhere! They will not refund you, instead you can get a ticket for a different day so you can waste another 2 hours looking, that lasts for up to a year. The conservationists know about as much as Wikipedia does, couldn’t even answer with any conviction how long a humpback can live. Don’t waste your money, just go sit at the beach and watch a sunset, you will see the same thing 97% of the time!
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.

22YearsWhaleWatching
1 contribution
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
Our first time with Pacific Whale Foundation was a snorkeling trip to Lanai in 1998. We subsequently became members. We visit Maui every February for our anniversary and always do at least one trip with PWF. This time we did the Moonlight Cruise/Concert, a Sunset Whale Watch and a Sunrise Whale Watch. The crew is very knowledgeable and they work hard to make sure you get your money's worth. Our only disappointment was the Moonlight Cruise/Concert. The weather was so rough that a wave shorted out the musician's equipment and the concert was brought to a quick close. In addition, it was so rough that the captain didn't turn the boat around to watch the moon rise. We both felt that the conditions were borderline and that for the first time in over 22 years we did not have an excellent adventure. However, overall this is a great group and we will continue to support them.
Written February 21, 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.
Aloha. We are so happy to hear that you have enjoyed your ecotours with us. Mahalo for your review!
Written February 24, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

cktobin614
Colfax, CA1 contribution
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Family
I booked the Lanai dolphin and snorkel tour many months ago while planning my family's vacation to Maui. We were all very excited to go out on the ocean, see some dolphins and snorkel (which my son has never done). One of the reasons I decided to go with this tour was because of the family-friendly advertising. I was highly disappointed. We were told that a crew member was going to gather all the kids for a snorkel lesson prior to arriving - that never happened. We were encouraged to hear the captain give his Snorkeling 101 lesson after we stopped and were happy too since my son has never been. We didn't realize that this would eat up our actual snorkeling time!!! After we FINALLY got in the water, my son got too cold and wanted to go back to the boat after about 5 minutes. My husband and I decided to take turns out in the water so I went first and decided to head back in after about 15 minutes to let my husband have his turn. When my husband went to head out into the water, he was told that he couldn't jump in because they were calling everybody back. ALREADY??? I was only out there for about 20 minutes total!! My husband never got to snorkel. This was VERY upsetting! Why couldn't we have been given that Snorkeling 101 lesson on the boat ride out? What happened to the kids instruction?

Lunch was bland. Staff was OK. They spent more time handing out puke buckets on the way back than anything else. I really felt bad for them.

The bathrooms really stank.

We will not return to this tour.
Written March 7, 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.
We thank you for coming out with us and providing your feedback. I'm certainly sorry to hear that you were disappointed in your experience. I welcome you to reach out to me directly at johngaskins@pacwhale.com so I can get some specific information and see about providing you a refund. We always want our customers to enjoy our experience and this has been an extremely popular tour for many years, but obviously we didn't deliver in this instance.
Written March 10, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

SouthernTwist
Texas, USA15 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020 • Friends
How do you site a humpback whale in a bay without using sonar? 1. You keep copious notes about previous viewings, and 2. You tell all the people on your catamaran to look for the puff of water (it looks like cotton candy or a puff of smoke). And, the race is on.
We saw the baby humpback whale first because he surfaced more frequently than his folks. Yes, there were 3 of them - baby, mama and daddy. Impressive show with a final flip of one of the parent's tails before we started back to the harbor.
Our captain told us very important safety rules: 1. Don't stand in front of him and impede his ability to steer the vessel, 2. Always hold onto a railing with one hand while standing or walking around the catamaran. The wind was up that day. I quickly discovered that it required two hands to hold on when the captain said there was a swell approaching.
We enjoyed the seats in front of the cockpit, but remembered to not stand in front of the captain. On the way back the waves were so high it was like riding a roller coaster. Super fun ride!
They suggest you bring a hat (it was so windy, I didn't wear mine), sunscreen, binoculars and camera. I just used my camera. Bring the longest lens you own because they abide by the rules about stopping at a specified distance from a whale. If the whale approaches the vessel after we have stopped, then that's allowed. Evidently the babies are curious.
Definitely a highlight of the trip! I liked that this is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to preserving the humpback whale populations.
Written January 15, 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.
Aloha. We love to hear that you had such a positive experience on your whalewatching ecotour with us. Mahalo for your review!
Written January 16, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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PacWhale Eco-Adventures - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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