< back

Contact us

{% trans 'Our scuba travel experts are available 24/7 to assist you in planning and book' + 'ing a fantastic scuba diving vacation' %}

Liveaboard Diving in Hawaii

From cage diving with sharks to night diving with manta rays, adventure awaits along the Hawaiian archipelago. Explore these pristine waters aboard a scuba diving liveaboard.

Hawaii liveaboards

Part of the United States, Hawaii is an archipelago that reaches more than 1,500 miles (2,400 kilometers) across the Pacific Ocean. An idyllic state on the fringes of the South Pacific, it’s no wonder Hawaii is a scuba diving wonderland. It’s possible to dive from many of the islands of Hawaii, but liveaboards in the area tend to concentrate around Kona. While you can dive from the many resorts found here, to access the far southern sites (which are out of reach of day operators), you’ll need to travel by liveaboard. Most liveaboard diving itineraries in Hawaii last 7 nights. The Kona Aggressor II is a sturdy motor yacht which has been built by divers for divers. She can accommodate up to 14 guests in 6 cabins and boasts a professional dive crew of 6, ready to provide personalized diving service. With air conditioning throughout the boat, spacious cabins and lots of areas for relaxation, the Kona Aggressor provides the comfort and reliability of the Aggressor name.

Diving in Hawaii

Quick facts

Hawaii is famous among divers and non-divers for its amazing biodiversity. Off this archipelago of islands, you’ll find everything from macro critters to giant whales. Most divers who enjoy the liveaboard experience head to Kona where inward currents and a plethora of plankton-rich waters attract megafauna in great numbers. There’s migrating whale sharks and humpback whales to find as well as a nightly symphony of manta rays. Sea turtles, stingrays, sharks and fish of all shapes and sizes round off an impressive array of marine life. Because of its size and position in the Pacific Ocean, Hawaii features a wide variety of underwater environments. You’ll find drift dives past life-filled walls, rocky coral beds, pinnacles and sandy bottoms to explore. There are also a few wrecks in varying degrees of disrepair. Of course, shark diving in these waters has also become a must. On many of the sites, you might happen across a fierce predator, but in other regions, cage diving has become a popular activity. Night diving around all of the islands is also a possibility, and, as previously mentioned, the manta ray night dive is an absolute must. Much of the liveaboard diving in Hawaii is quite easy. Most operators generally only require an Open Water certificate with 10 logged dives. A check dive will take place at the beginning of every cruise. However, it is important to check with your chosen operator for specific certification requirements.


April to October

While seasons can vary significantly from island to island, the diving around Kona is good pretty much every day of the year. However, because the water does get a bit colder and the surface becomes choppy during the winter months, it is said that the best time to dive in Hawaii is from April to October. Within the suggested months, you’ll find warm enough water temperatures between 78 and 81°F (25 to 27°C). This means you’ll only need to pack a 3mm wetsuit or shorty. You’ll also enjoy visibility of between 75 and 100 feet (22 and 30 meters). And, surface conditions are at their calmest, allowing liveaboards to reach all of the area’s dive sites. You can even enjoy some shore diving before or after your trip. On the other hand, November to March are the best months for spotting humpback whales off the coast of Hawaii. In addition, September and January are the least busy months for scuba divers. So, if you like to dive from liveaboards that aren’t full, we suggest going in either of these months. Finally, the air temperature remains fairly steady throughout the year, although the winter months can be slightly chillier. The thermometer generally reads between 75 and 90°F (24 and 32°C).

View our full scuba guide

How to Get to Hawaii

The departure port for most liveaboards in Hawaii is Kailua-Kona Harbor on Kona. Most operators do not provide transfers from the airport to the harbor, but taxis are readily available. The nearest airport to the Kona harbor is Kona International Airport (KOA). It is served by 11 airlines which mostly fly to the west coasts of the United States and Canada as well as other Hawaiian destinations.

Save that favourite

With a PADI Travel account, you can favourite dive operators to come back to later on any device or computer

Log in or sign up