Lanaʻi Marine Mammal Search & Snorkel


Support Pacific Whale Foundation (PWF) researchers as a community scientist on this unique tour while also stopping to snorkel the beautiful coral reefs of Lanaʻi, offered October 3-13.

Afternoon, Morning, Evening
Become a member
Adults (Ages 13 & Over)
Children (Ages 7-12)

Experience first-hand what it is like to be a marine mammal researcher! During this exclusive opportunity, you will offer support to a team of scientists from PWF, the Marine Mammal Research Program at the University of Hawaii, and Stanford University as they survey the waters off Lanaʻi and test new equipment. Your role is to scan the ocean for endangered false killer whales and other marine mammals using complimentary binoculars and report your sightings to the researchers. Watch science in action as researchers on PWF’s research vessel, Ocean Protector, rush to the scene if you sight their priority species, false killer whales. A PWF Research Assistant will be on board with you to answer your questions about marine science, demonstrate photo-identification methods, and explain the data collection as it unfolds. False killer whales in Hawaiʻi are a high priority species for PWF and other researchers, with no clear sign of recovery since being designated as Endangered in 2012. With your help, we hope to locate them and collect valuable data that will help us to understand the health of individual animals, the status of the endangered population and their use of the Maui Nui region. Although false killer whales might not be sighted on your tour, you will also be looking for and reporting on other dolphin species that PWF studies, including bottlenose, spinner and spotted dolphins. During the tour, there will be a break from searching along the water’s surface to explore the magnificent underwater world of the Lanaʻi coast. Continental breakfast is included, and a delicious lunch is prepared onboard. This is an exciting, fun-filled and educational tour for both adults and keiki (children) over the age of seven. Book your ticket today, as this is a limited-time-only tour with a maximum capacity of 25 people.

Learn more about false killer whales and PWF’s efforts to understand and protect them HERE.

Departs: October 3, 5, 7, 9, 11 and 13 at 7:15 a.m.

Duration: 6-7 hours (approx.)

Check-in Time: 45 minutes prior to departure

Check-in Location: Pacific Whale Foundation Ocean Store, 612 Front Street, Lahaina

Pacific Whale Foundation advocates for the use of protective clothing and reef-safe sunscreen to help protect fragile coral reefs and to promote a healthy ocean environment. We support the statewide ban on sunscreens containing oxybenzone and octinoxate and, beginning November 2019, we are moving from encouragement to enforcement and instituting our own ban onboard PWF vessels of sunscreens containing: oxybenzone, octinoxate, avobenzone, avobenzine, homosalate, octisalate, octocrylene, and ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate in order to alleviate any additional stress on coral reefs. When buying sunscreen, it is important to read the ingredient list, as the term “reef safe” is not regulated and can be used as a marketing device. Choose sunscreen that is non-nano zinc oxide based, like those found in our Ocean Store. Mahalo for helping us protect the ocean.

  • What is your cancelation policy?

    Normally, we accept cancellations 48 hours prior to the scheduled date of your trip. Due to the current health crisis, we will consider late cancellations related to the COVID-19 pandemic, i.e. quarantine, isolation or flu-like symptoms.  As we do this in good faith, we deeply appreciate the earliest cancellation notice possible.

  • Your trip includes

    • PWF Researcher and Certified Marine Naturalists onboard
    • Premium snorkel gear, including optical masks for eyeglass wearers
    • Flotation devices, snorkel instruction, fish i.d. class
    • Onboard Jr. Naturalist Program for kids
    • Reef Safe Sunscreen – 4 oz. sunscreen in a fully sustainable tube made from sugarcane available for $17 onboard.
    • Free Marine Wildlife oversize postcard
    • Continental breakfast: Maui Vegetable Fritatta (eggs, potato, bell pepper, onion, spinach, mushroom, cheddar, parmesan), assorted pastries, fruit platter
    • Lunch grilled onboard: chicken breasts, kiawe-smoked pork with guava BBQ sauce, hot dogs, garden burgers, potato salad, Maui-style potato chips, dessert
    • Refreshments: unlimited soda, juice, and filtered water, plus one complimentary alcoholic beverage. Enjoy vodka, gin, rum and beer crafted on island from Ocean Vodka and Maui Brewing Company. We also have wine and tequila available.
  • Also available

    • Affordable rentals of wetsuit shirts and underwater cameras
  • Membership benefits

    • Regular updates on PWF Research, Education and Conservation
    • Special Access to Industry Experts
    • Quarterly Member Spotlight
    • Exclusive Access to our Membership Portal
    • Invitation to Member Only Events
    • One of a Kind Member Merchandise
    • Priority boarding on PacWhale Eco-Adventures vessels
Become a member
Adults (Ages 13 & Over)
Children (Ages 7-12)

Hawaii Visitor Update

Aloha, We Are Open!  Our PacWhale Eco-Adventures are open for booking as we welcome visitors back to Maui.  Quarantine restrictions were lifted on Oct. 15th for those following the state’s pre-arrival COVID-19 testing requirements.