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“This is THE WAY to see Whales on Maui!”

Hawaiian Paddle Sports
Ranked #1 of 81 Tours in Kihei
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Private Kayak and Outrigger Canoe Snorkel Tours. Surf Lessons, SUP (Stand Up Paddleboard) Hawaiian Paddle Sports offers a private alternative for Ocean Activities on Maui! If going out on crowded, diesel burring boat isn't your idea for ocean activities and you'd rather avoid going out with one of Large Kayak Companies or Surf Schools perhaps we are what you are looking for! We focus on attention to detail and the over all guest experience. Guide operated, Hawaiian Paddle Sports sets the bar for ocean activities on Maui. Whale Watching and Sea Turtle Snorkel Tours on Hawaiian Outrigger Canoes, Ocean Kayaks. We also offer "Guaranteed To Surf" Surfing Lessons or Stand Up Paddle Boards. All of our tours/lessons are Private.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
Buffalo, New York
Level 4 Contributor
15 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“This is THE WAY to see Whales on Maui!”
Reviewed 18 April 2012

My husband and I took a HPS whale watching kayak tour on April 10, at the tail end (no pun intended) of whale season. Despite that, we saw close to a dozen whales, including a baby an mama who swam alongside as we paddled at a safe distance. One single male swam towards us, came up about 25-30 yards in front of our kayaks, swam beneath us and came up again behind us. WOW! We did a catamaran whale watching tour a few days before in Kaanapali, and it was great, but nothing compares to seeing these amazing animals from a kayak at water level!

Some of the great things about HPS that we both really liked:

1. You are not mixed in with other families, so it was just my husband and me with our guide, Chelsea (who is fantastic!). We went at our pace, didn't feel rushed and didn't feel held up. That alone is worth paying extra.

2. HPS is very environmentally conscious. It was so discouraging a few days later when I saw a different company's kayak guide with a group of kids while we were snorkeling off Polo Beach. He picked up a little octopus, put it on top of a guy's head for that "perfect" vacation photo, then played catch with it! Really?!? I felt so bad for the poor little thing, and wish I had said something. By comparison, HPS guides respect the animals and the earth. It's a privilege to be able to enjoy seeing these marvelous animals (the whales, not the HPS guides, LOL!) in their natural environment in Maui, and awe at watching them but not chasing or disturbing them for a "photo op".

3. Chelsea is very knowledgeable about the ocean, the animals and the island. During our paddle "breaks" it was great to talk with and listen to her. Great guide, awesome sense of humor, and lots of fun.

4. After kayaking for a couple of hours, we had the best snorkeling of our vacation right off the kayaks near Makena Landing. Clear water, lots of bigger fish, sea turtles, and no other snorkelers.

If you're recommending a kayak or canoe tour I highly recommend using Hawaiin Paddle Sports!! I wanted to do a surfing lesson too, but we ran out of time. Next trip, for sure. Thank you Chelsea and HPS for such an awesome 3 hours!!

Visited April 2012
Helpful?
Thank LifeIzzGood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HawaiianPaddleSports, Manager at Hawaiian Paddle Sports, responded to this review, 20 April 2012
Aloha and Mahalo for the kind words. We're glad you enjoyed your time with Chelsea and Hawaiian Paddle Sports. Thank you for understanding and getting behind our environmental practices of not touching the marine life. Instead enjoying it in its natural, unstressed, unharmed state. Its through practices like these and others that we became one of the three companies on Maui (1 of 13 in the entire state of Hawaii) to be certified by the Hawaii Ecotourism Association. Many companies are (dues paying) members of the HEA but the board of directors only chose 13 companies to honor with this certification.
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1,053 reviews from our community

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English first
Chicago
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Phenominal family canoe tour!”
Reviewed 13 April 2012

My wife, 8-year-old daughter and I took a canoe tour with Tim on April 9, 2012. What was best about this experience is that Tim molded the tour to our interests and comfort zone. My daughter loves ocean animals and our goal was to experience and learn as much as we could. Since none of us had canoed like this before, we needed to be taught the basics and start slow. Tim taught us the proper way to work the canoe and paddle. He also taught us some Hawaiian words and a lot about the Hawaiian culture and nature. On the tour, we saw whales and sea turtles much to my daughter's delight. Tim then took us to a secluded beach for a snack and to explore and learn about the plant and animal life there. Later, we saw more turtles and then snorkeled a reef loaded with fish, etc. All in all, it was an absolutely fantastic experience and we highly recommend this tour to anyone wishing to truly experience Hawaiian canoeing & marine life up close and personal.

Visited April 2012
Helpful?
Thank Rob P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HawaiianPaddleSports, Manager at Hawaiian Paddle Sports, responded to this review, 20 April 2012
Aloha and Mahalo for your review. Your tour illustrates exactly why we only offer PRIVATE tours. On a group tour there is a set schedule and agenda. With Hawaiian Paddle Sports we are able to be flexible and offer a tour custom made to your expectations and abilities. I'm glad you enjoyed your time with us and we're looking forward to seeing you on your next visit. A hui hou!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level 3 Contributor
19 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Best experience of Hawaii”
Reviewed 12 April 2012

Cutting to the chase: It was Definitely Worth It.
The review: Our family (Wife/7 and 9 year old boys/Husband) went out on a kayak whale watch with Tim 23 March. Now, if you’re looking for the easiest way to view whales, this is not the trip for you, but if you are looking for a up close and personal life experience…and are willing to put in some effort…you’ll be rewarded, assuming the whales cooperate. At the end of the day, it’s all up to nature, but you can be assured that Tim will make every effort to provide you value for your entertainment dollar, and that’s what I base the 5 star score on. We were fortunate, we got whales probably within 25 yards or so, nothing dramatic, like breaching, but cruising under us, blowing and surfacing, some nice tail waves, all good. Tim made sure we played by the rules, not moving towards them when they were already inside the 100 yd limit, etc.
Now, we venture into pure opinion, but we could have viewed the whales at half the cost, but have gotten much less than half the experience. That’s what gets the 5 stars, Tim could have easily given up on us as a bad lot, two out of shape adults, two kids, both boys ended up getting seasick, a mile out already with little luck in getting to the whales, but he could tell we were game, and really wanted to see the whales…. He could have said, “hey, they aren’t cooperating today, but we can catch some snorkeling near the launch” and had himself a nice easy morning. Instead, he stuck with us, and we ended up with a great morning.
It’s an interesting business proposition. You pay more, but you get personalized touring. At the end of the day, it’s partly up to nature, but you anticipate that you are paying your guide for his experience, his expertise, and his professionalism. HPS delivered on all counts.

Visited March 2012
Helpful?
1 Thank VSTL_13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HawaiianPaddleSports, Manager at Hawaiian Paddle Sports, responded to this review, 20 April 2012
Aloha,
Mahalo for taking the time to share your experience with other travelers. I'm glad you enjoyed your trip and thank you for your honest account of your time spent with us. We definitely had to work harder and paddle further that day then we usually do. But as we tell our guests this time of year "whale watching is hit or miss, sometimes they are right off shore...other times we have to SEARCH for them" I'm glad we ended up spotting that guy and it made the effort worth while. Thank you also for pointing out the value of a private tour vs. going out on the 'discount' large boat tours. We explain all the time to potential guests that it really is hard to compare the two experiences as they are like comparing apples to oranges. One you're on a large boat with hundreds of people... the other its you and friends/family and a guide, no engine noise, no crowd noise... just the peace of mother nature:) A hui hou!
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San Francisco
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Amazing kayak trip to Molokini”
Reviewed 11 April 2012

My partner and I went kayaking with HPS to Molokini yesterday at sunrise and would highly recommend this tour for anyone interested in a challenging but beautiful kayaking trip, and to ANYONE who is interested in kayaking in Maui at all. Our guide Ross was great -- super friendly, knowledgeable and patient. He stopped frequently to take our photos kayaking. Highlights of the trip include seeing at least four whales (including two breaching), beating the tourist boat rush to Molokini, kayaking in open water with the sun rising behind you on Mt. Haleakala, and snorkeling above gigantic sea turtles. Thanks, Ross and HPS -- an awesome trip!!

Visited April 2012
Helpful?
2 Thank Liz L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HawaiianPaddleSports, Manager at Hawaiian Paddle Sports, responded to this review, 20 April 2012
We're glad you ladies enjoyed your private kayak tour to molokini! It was an exceptional day on the water that morning and we couldn't have hoped for better weather on a Molokini Challenge day. I do like to point out that this trip IS NOT for everyone, it is physically demanding and the weather conditions can/do change quickly in Hawaii. Ross and other guides are highly skilled and know what to look for should the weather become an issue, but ultimately you still have to do all the paddling:) So keep in mind that we do offer great shoreline tours where we paddle at an easy pace and see some amazing sites and turtles. A hui hou!
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Arkansas
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Awesome kayak tour!”
Reviewed 9 April 2012

We just finished a kayak tour at the south Maui location. Tim was very informative about maui, the culture, and the whales. We spotted multiple whales thanks to his keen eye. He offered multiple times to let us get in the water to snorkel, but we were just happy to whale watch! This is our second trip to Maui, and wish we had done this trip before. Can't wait to come back, and do another tour!

Helpful?
1 Thank KLJackson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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