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Airport Beach in Maui

Airport Beach for Maui scuba diving with Molokai island in the background.

Scuba Dive in Ka’anapali, Maui

The Hawaiian Islands are a tropical paradise and perhaps the best place for scuba diving and snorkeling in North America. One of our favorite scuba dives is the excellent Airport Beach in Maui. Also known as Kahekili Beach Park, Airport Beach sits south of the Westin Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas in Ka’anapali. This dive site provides an excellent environment for scuba diving tours, beginner lessons, and PADI courses.

Airport Beach features a spectacular coral reef that you can see standing on the beach. The corals here are home to many different sea creatures for you to visit. Underwater the area is ideal for scuba diving lessons because of its sandy entry and shallow descent points. The inside coral reef system extends from the shore to 25 feet deep, where you will again find sand. Here the sand forms a channel separating the inside and outside reef sections. The massive outer reef starts at 30 feet and slopes down to 45 feet. At times, your underwater visibility at Airport Beach can be up to 100 feet, averaging 50 feet year-round.

Walking into the ocean, you first notice that the coral reef begins right away at the shoreline. Quickly your depth drops from zero to five feet, the corals appear, and you gradually continue descending from there. Airport Beach in Maui is ideal for snorkeling and scuba diving because of this shallow and sandy entry! Indeed, most of our introductory scuba diving lessons happen at this famous beach in Ka’anapali. 

For non-divers, this public park also has a large grassy area with a pavilion at the center. There are barbecue pits, picnic tables, and restrooms with showers. Airport Beach has an adjacent paved parking lot that usually provides plenty of space. It’s not a surprise to see families and friends gather here for 1st birthday and graduation parties!

Airport Beach has a reputation for clear visibility and calm ocean conditions, making it the best spot to begin your Maui scuba diving lessons. Similarly, it is an excellent place for certified divers to review and refresh their scuba skills, especially if they haven’t been diving for six months or longer. Overall, the location in Ka’anapali is gorgeous, with plenty for scuba divers and snorkelers to experience underwater.

What to Expect at Airport Beach

When you begin a scuba diving lesson with us at Airport Beach in Maui, you can expect to see colorful moray eels, turtles, octopus, and tropical fish amongst vast sections of fringing corals. The reef sits close to shore in shallow water, so beginner divers also experience the best Maui scuba diving here!

On any given day, expect to see schools of fish hovering over the reef as a sizable Green Turtle eats at algae on the corals. Incredibly, Airport Beach also features rare Hawksbill Turtles. Most Maui dive sites do not have any resident Hawksbill Turtles, but here you can find three!

Airport Beach is a great place to explore for both scuba divers and snorkelers. The current is generally not too strong, but beware that it can become powerful! You will notice the current flows north or south along the coast, making navigation easy during your scuba diving lesson or guided shore dive. This natural highway for marine life means you can enjoy multiple dives here!

Best of all, if you visit Maui during January, February, and March, Airport Beach gets loud underwater! When you scuba dive with us, you get to hear songs from passing male Humpback Whales. For a few months, the whales become regular features of this dive site. Scuba divers and snorkelers do not see the quick-moving whales, but these enormous animals make themselves heard!

Please contact us to schedule your Maui scuba diving lessons, tours, and PADI courses. Banyan Tree Divers Maui offers shore diving in Lahaina seven days a week, including private dives and ScubaJet scooter rentals. Our mobile dive shop in Lahaina is ideal for small groups and boutique, personalized dive packages. We have professional scuba instructors that place the highest emphasis on your safety and personal comfort.