Dive Hawai‘i’s Waters
Mauna Loa is the world’s largest active volcano and one of two volcanic peaks that dominate the Big Island; in fact, Mauna Loa, which literally means “long mountain” in Hawaiian, spreads over half of the island! From sea level, Mauna Loa reaches 13,680 feet in height, but when measured from its base at the ocean floor, this mammoth of a mountain clocks in at 30,080 feet.
This great bulk of underwater expanse is today a scuba diver’s fantasy of lava flows, submerged caves, canyons, cliffs and colorful coral reefs. Indeed, diving the ocean off the Kona/ Kohala Coast is a world-class experience that stands out for its relatively young lava formations with walls, archways, lava tubes and abundant marine life.
Charter dive companies offer guided tours and courses in certification. Some include scuba specialty courses like photography and videography. Many local dive shops also offer more-advanced courses, ranging from rescue and dive master to specialty classes and open-water checkouts. If you’ve got the time and the inclination, you can work toward full certification, or C-card, which is good indefinitely and honored worldwide.
• Big Island Watersports (808) 324-1650 • Lava Ocean Adventures (808) 966-4200 • Ocean Eco Tours (808) 324-7873