Scroll to Continue
Adult males range from 40 to 52 feet and can weigh up to 45 tons. Despite their size, humpback whales are graceful acrobats. Keep your eye on the ocean and you might see one breach, propelling up to 40 percent of its body out of the water and landing on its side with a spectacular splash.
Whales have great cultural significance for Native Hawaiians. They play a large role in Hawaiian legend—including one creation story—and appear in ancient petroglyphs on several islands. The return of the kohola (humpback whale) is considered more of a homecoming than a visit. Humpback whales are born in Hawaiian waters, making them kamaaina (native born). Some Native Hawaiians also believe the whales are aumakua (family guardians), so these gentle giants are treated with great respect.
Cultural Significance of Whales in Hawaii
Although humpback whales can be seen from all of the Hawaiian Islands, the shallow Auau Channel between Maui, Molokai and Lanai is one of the best whale-watching destinations in the world.
What's the Best Way to See Whales?
You may also spot kohola from the southern shores of Oahu, especially at Makapuu Lighthouse and along the seaside overlooks near Leahi (Diamond Head).
Kauai offers a range of whale-viewing opportunities, including Poipu Beach on the South Shore, Kilauea Lighthouse on the North Shore and Kapaa Overlook on the island’s Coconut Coast.
On the island of Hawaii, whales are often seen along the shores of the Kohala Coast, as well as Hilo Bay on the east side of the island. The Puukohola Heiau National Historic Site is another great viewing spot, with its sweeping, elevated views near Kawaihae Harbor. In fact, Puukohola literally means “hill of the whale” in Hawaiian.
Boat tours may be your best option for viewing whales up close. Hawaii has dozens of tour operators, including a few that lead kayak excursions—a thrilling way to experience these majestic mammals.
In respect for the kohola and the safety of sightseers, all watercraft must stay a minimum of 100 yards from the whales, but you'll be surprised how close you feel when a 45-ton behemoth lunges out of the sea. If a boat tour is not for you, the whales’ impressive acrobatic displays are often visible from miles away. If you're on land, keep a pair of binoculars handy because you never know when you'll see a humpback’s spout (which can be 10–20 feet tall).
Makana Charters is the only Na Pali tour company offering personalized or private morning and afternoon tours on the Na Pali coast on your choice of three vessels - a 32 or 12 person catamaran, or an adventurous tour on our shaded raft. Explore the sea caves, get under waterfalls, and snorkel.
We are a small family run business with more than 25 years of combined Real Estate and vacation rental experience on Kauai. Condos and cottages from Wailua, Kapaa, Anahola, Princeville, Anini and Haena. Visa or MC accepted.
Poipu 365 is a boutique Vacation Rental Company. The office is in close proximity to its fine selection of homes and condos in Poipu Beach, Kauai. Vicki Agor, owner of Poipu365 is a real estate agent that offers property management and marketing services.
Paradise awaits within the lush, tropical garden Island of Kauai. Enjoy this World Away with Great Vacation Retreats. We are here to help you create the perfect Hawaii vacation at one of our luxury condos or estates.
Poipu Kai is a 70 acre resort community in Poipu on Kauai's south shore. The community consists of seven condo developments with their own swimming pools, the 8 court Poipu Kai Tennis Club, a community pool and hot tub, and beautiful garden paths connecting the areas of the resort.
SellMyTimeshareNow offers a vast inventory of Lihue timeshares for sale and rent by-owner for far less than most resorts can match. These are among some of the most popular timeshares in Hawaii as they boast spectacular views of the gorgeous Kauai coastline and provide guests with unlimited luxury.