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“Manta Ray Snorkel”
Review of Kamanu Charters

Kamanu Charters
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: Kamanu Charters has two boats our real sailing boat Kamanu catamaran offers snorkel sails and dolphin swims and manta night trips and sunset sails.Our state of the art raft Kamanu Elua has forward padded bench seating and is a fast exciting trip,we offer dolphin swims and go to captain cook after dolphin swim and night manta trips.Whale watches are offered on both boats from Dec to April.
Reviewed 2 May 2018 via mobile

Had a fantastic time on this tour! The crew was friendly, professional and very casual. We went out to a northern site just past the airport which was a bit of a chilly trek (bring warmer clothes) but definitely enjoyable - even saw dolphins on the way! Once we got to the site, joining about 10 other boats, our crew advised us to wait to get into the water until there were sightings of rays from other boats; this was a strategy to keep us warmer for longer which was very much appreciated. Once we got into the water we all held on to the makeshift surfboard/light board which proved very effective as we had over 10 mantas feed off the plankton at our spot. Our crew continued to give us fun facts when there was downtime in between manta visits to our board. We were in the water for about 45 minutes. All in all, a very well executed excursion!

Thank trace-why-lo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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"captain chandler"
in 30 reviews
"dolphin swim"
in 49 reviews
"manta ray"
in 47 reviews
"fish"
in 47 reviews
"pretzels"
in 15 reviews
"spinner dolphins"
in 30 reviews
"night snorkeling"
in 10 reviews
"the big island"
in 37 reviews
"wet suits"
in 16 reviews
"once in a lifetime"
in 19 reviews
"great morning"
in 7 reviews
"zodiac boat"
in 5 reviews
"light board"
in 5 reviews
"juice"
in 12 reviews
"dolphin tour"
in 7 reviews
"whale watching"
in 13 reviews
"cookies"
in 13 reviews
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46 - 50 of 545 reviews

Reviewed 20 April 2018

We liked the Kamanu Charters people. James was a great, friendly captain, and the other two (forgot the names -- Danelle? and a young man new to the island) were very friendly. My son was nervous, and ended up not going in the water for more than 3 minutes, but helped the captain fill up the gas tank and get the snacks (fruit and a box of grocery store cookies) out. The water was rough, and James went to his "regular spot." I heard him talk to someone on the radio, and decide he would go to his regular place. After a 40 minute ride out, waiting an hour for the sun to set (saw nothing in the water, couldn't see the bottom -- very deep) someone saw one manta ray before putting the lights out to attract the plankton. Once they put the boards with lights out, plenty of small fish came up, but no mantas. We waited. We saw one manta about 20 feet below us. The waves were rocking us pretty hard and it started getting cold. Another manta ray came up right under us, 5 feet below. It was amazing. And then we saw nothing else for a while. The boat about 50 feet away from us started oohing. A pod of dolphins were around them. We got the silver fish under us. I turned behind me to look at the dolphins, and about three or four of them were underneath us off to the side playing on the bow line (anchor line?) of another boat 25 feet away. I could see the outline of their fins barely in the dark.

When we left, it was kind of cool to see the dolphins, and the captain went on and on about how cool and unusual it was. We still had seen only two mantas. I was disappointed. I asked the assistant how many they had seen the night before "one or two fly-bys." Oh. So, not many.

When we got off the boat and started to head home with an eye to grab some food (we had gotten to the boat at 4:40 and had no food except a few small pieces of fruit and two cookies and it was now 8:30-- my 8 year old was whiny and tired) another boat captain stopped and asked if we had seen any mantas. We said we were a little disappointed with the two we saw. He (John from Zodiac tours) said he had called James and said he had a spot where they had seen 20+ mantas doing multiple fly-bys, but it was slightly harder to get to or that they boards wouldn't be attached to the boat, but that the captain just decided not to do the work to get the customers to that spot. I was truly looking forward to the multiple mantas that were in the video shown on the Kamanu website. It was going to be the highlight of the trip. But instead, it was "meh." We paid a lot of money #1 for my son to get scared and refuse to go in the water. (clearly not the boat company's fault). But then to only see two rays in a spot they had only seen two rays the night before? It seemed unacceptable. When we returned to the landing, the office (and bathrooms) were closed. (If you have to go, you should go in the ocean, I guess.)

(short version: saw two mantas over four hours; very little food over dinnertime hours (4:30-8:30); bathrooms and office closed afterwards; friendly staff, nice boat and sunset.)

Thank kimrily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 April 2018 via mobile

We were a family of 7 plus a baby...We booked Kamanu Charters after several calls around, we found them by going through the non commercial way’
We had an amazing morning, James & Josh were fantastic hosts, we would highly recommend them and would book this boat tour again in a heartbeat!

Thank Jktorontotraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 14 April 2018 via mobile

My wife and I found this charter on Yelp. We contacted them about prices; they replied swiftly with the most reasonable rates of the charters we contacted. The boat is a nice catamaran with comfortable seating for a large group; ours was 21. They provided beverages on the way out and beverages and snacks on the way back.

James, Chris & Josh—the crew—were a great balance of affable and capable and gave us a concise, informative overview of how we would spend our 3 hours. FYI, James is incredibly knowledgeable about manta rays.

We headed to the manta ray feeding ground about 40 minutes before sunset. they provided us with wetsuits, masks, fins, and snorkels. All of the gear was well-maintained. In fact, most of it seemed brand new.

We swam around and took in the fish and coral formations hoping to catch a glimpse of a manta rays before sunset. As the sun set, they put out there late boards that attract the plankton that is the food source for the fish and manta rays.

We waited a bit in nervous anticipation. Our patience was rewarded by 20 straight minutes of 4-5 manta rays swimming within inches of our fingertips!!!!!! They did loop after graceful loop scooping up plankton. We were so close we could see straight into their mouths, their gills as they passed, and could clearly see the texture of their skin.

This was an absolutely amazing experience!

Do this!

Thank Austin W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 6 April 2018

Skipper, John, and crew, Mitch, oriented our group of 8 to a thrilling evening not only of several feeding, acrobatic Manta Rays, but also some unscripted delights of schools of aholehole fish also eating plankton AND 3 Spinner Dolphins playing with out anchor line! What a fun, informative adventure that we'll talk about for years.

1  Thank dinobonz2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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