We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Experience varies by the day”
Review of Black Rock

Black Rock
Book In Advance
More Info
$129.71*
and up
Maui Scuba Diving Introductory Lesson
More Info
$129.71*
and up
Maui Night Scuba Diving Tour
Ranked #37 of 371 things to do in Maui
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Close to most resorts on Kaanapali Beach, this snorkeling area can get crowded.
Liberty Lake, WA
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Experience varies by the day”
Reviewed January 28, 2013

I've read some of the poitive and negative reviews and think I can help sort them out. We went five times over 10 days late January and saw most of what has been reported good and bad. First, What can vary from day to day. Light: when bright and sunny, more cool stuff is visible and it seems to come to life, other times it seemed brown and dingy with less to see unless you got close to the rocks and white water. Water Clarity: likewise, when calmer surf, small waves and mild wind prevail, more cool stuff is visible. Fish: now some days there were lots of fish and even an eel, others there were less around, but by my count never less than 12-15 varieties. Turtles: we saw turtles at the point three out of five days, always a perk, no rhyme or reason. One day it hung around for 5 minutes, once it cruised by me 3 feet away and dove deep and was gone too fast to pass the word to my family 10 feet away. Now, what doesn't change from day to day is of course the rock and coral structures: same every day (we thought Makena Landing had better coral varieties and more turtles but is an hour away), but whatever is there looks way cooler on bright calm mornings. In the end we had both great snorkeling and lousy snorkeling all at the same spot depending on the light levels, clarity, time of day, and whether the fish and turtles put on a show. What we found was that if the snorkeling was poor at least there was a nice beach for sunning, a nice evening show, the occasional whale breaching just off the point and constant whale songs a couple feet under the water, and a great sunset view. Sure a lot of people go there, but there was room for everyone and begins to clear out after at dinner time. Parking however was a bugger, only one day we waited around and got one of the coveted free spots right near the beach access. The rest of the time we parked at the whalers villiage and walked the block and a half, something they say they do not allow, but seemed to me like we saw a lot of people doing it. The first day we paid $16 to park there for 4 hours, ouch! Afterwards we just bought stuff we were going to buy anyway from the stores who validate your parking ticket in 3 hour chunks, but a 6 hour maximum for validation. We would often throw on a shirt and go to the ABC store and buy $15 in small gifts (they have $15 minimum to stamp), then go to the Haagan-Dazs ice cream store and spend another $15 (also their minimum purchase to stamp). And our 6 hours parking was covered. We thought it was fun and stuff we would have gotten anyway. Other options, some of the other hotels have some parking further down from Black Rock, and there is a shopping area up above called Fairway Shops, and a trolley runs a route and can take you up or down the road. We never did it, don't even know if they charge but saw some doing so. For those families with varied interests Black Rock and Ka'anapali Beach seemed to hold a lot of options, at least they did for us.

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
9 Thank Bret U
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Write a Review

665 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    360
    206
    67
    18
    14
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Onalaska, Wisconsin
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Busy spot”
Reviewed January 25, 2013

Very good snorkeling. Popular spot during mid-day. Beat the crowd by going early in morning. Great beach and very easy access.

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank Don H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
148 reviews
45 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
“If you snorkel, don't bother”
Reviewed January 25, 2013

After reading TripAdvisor I had a pretty good idea what to expect. The only reason we went was so our 7 year old could see a turtle. There are about 12-15 free parking spots in a parkade near the Sheraton. It is marked 'Beach Access Parking' or something like that. There is a sidewalk leading to the beach from near the parkade, then walk north to the rock. Easy sand entry. We were there for first light and I saw a turtle having breakfast in the surf within a minute of entering the water. Swim along the wall. Current was noticeable even before the point. We saw a fair number of fish, but the coral is not doing that well for reasons that are unclear to me. The beach itself is very nice. By 10 am we were done for 2 reasons: first there were hoards of people in the water and I really didn't want to get whacked in the face with a fin; second the beach was filling up and we were literally surrounded and penned in by people in lounge chairs from the Sheraton.

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank The_Cowtowners
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
91 reviews
33 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
“good snorkelling”
Reviewed January 23, 2013

Black rock was very neat. Beach was great and the snorkelling was good. Bit busy but worth it to check it out.

Visited January 2013
Helpful?
Thank Cold_Calgarians
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maryland
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
16 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 55 helpful votes
“Overrated”
Reviewed January 20, 2013

I am an avid snorkeler, and I really thought this was the most overrated spot that I snorkeled during my 12 days in Maui recently. I entered from the North side of the rock, and began swimming around the point, stopping when I could tell the current was starting to get too strong (one of my parents friends almost drowned while swimming here several years ago. He got caught in the current and was miraculously- and mysteriously- saved by a local who was swimming by). I wasn't impressed by the amount or health of the coral, and the number of fish was disappointing as well. No turtle sightings either, although I am told that this is not common. I also thought that the water felt colder in this location than in a lot of others, but that could just have been me. However, the water is definitely clear, and I did enjoy how the depth quickly dropped away to around 30 feet as you started to round the point. I would not recommend snorkeling around from the north end to beginners, as it appears that the waves and current are a little stronger on this side, although it is definitely less crowded here. The Ka'anapali beach side of the rock definitely looks like the safer bet. In all, I would recommend other spots nearby first, including Kahekili beach, a 10-15 minute beach walk north. Kahekili has a far healthier and abundant reef, larger variety of sea life, as well as much safer conditions suitable to snorkelers of all skill levels.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
3 Thank tslims99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

Travelers who viewed Black Rock also viewed

 

Been to Black Rock? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing