During our trip to the Big Island we wanted to take a sailing tour. At first we were torn between taking a whale watching tour and taking a sunset sail. After considering our options, we decided that the sunset sail with Ocean Sports was our best option and best value. For $100 per person, here’s what we experienced:
- Shuttle pick up from our resort to Kawaihae Harbor
- A generous open bar. The friendly crew was very attentive and always asking if they could get another drink for us.
- A buffet dinner with salad, ribs, tropical chicken and potatoes. The food was actually fairly good considering it was buffet style served on a catamaran cruise.
- Whale watching. As it is humpback whale season in Hawaii, we were able to see several whales up close and personal. One whale actually decided to approach the boat and give us a gentle nudge. It was hard to believe I was actually seeing what I was seeing. Watch the video below to get an idea of what this experience was like.
- A beautiful Kohala Coast sunset and view of the Big Island.
- Champagne toast at sunset.
- Shuttle return from the harbor back to our resort.
Overall, we had a very nice tour and I would recommend Ocean Sports tours to my friends.
Here are some points for you to consider when you are booking a sailing tour:
- If you are on the Big Island during whale season (officially between December 15th and April 15th) then it is very likely that you’ll see whales during a snorkel sail or sunset sail. So, in effect, you get a free whale watching tour in addition to your snorkeling or dinner sunset sail cruise. Overall, it’s the better value, however you won’t receive the whale sighting guarantee that you would get with a designated whale watching tour.
- We were told that whale watching tours from the Kohala Coast area tends to be better than from the Kona area. The reason that the Kohala coast is better is that the water is shallower near the shore as compared to the Kona area. So, the whales like to nurse and raise their calves in the safer, shallower waters.
- If you book more than one of Ocean Sports tours, you can ask for a 20% discount off the second tour.
- Another company from the Kohala Coast area that we also considered was Red Sail.
Have you gone on a Big Island sail? What was your experience?