Swimming With The Manta Rays Big Island – Swimming with giant manta rays at night is a unique adventure that truly transforms all who experience it. Well, most visitors spend these magical moments with dozens of other snorkelers and divers, blocking their view and on top of that destroying the manta rays.
At Manta Ray Advocates, we offer an exclusive and animal-friendly experience to visitors who want to experience the true magic of manta rays.
Swimming With The Manta Rays Big Island
At Manta Ray Advocates, mantas always come first. We follow strict guidelines to ensure that manta rays do not destroy our presence. We approach the manta rays from the beach, an ecological alternative to boats.
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Swimming with manta rays must be completely safe for both you and the manta rays. With over 50 years of experience, we know how important it is to have a safety brief before you start, and we only work with the most advanced equipment.
Instead of taking a boat, we enter from a white sand beach and swim to where the manta rays live. Read more about the place here! We work with small groups (up to 6 people) so we can give each guest the attention they deserve and make the experience educational for everyone.
With decades of experience, our guides are here to keep you safe and help you get the most out of your moonlight swim with manta rays.
An underwater videographer, James founded Dolphin Dreams Imaging (now Manta Ray Attorneys) in 1991.
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When he retired from diving and filmmaking in 2014, he stepped back from production and created a moonlight swim program at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel.
He is a PADI Master Dive Instructor, Ocean Educator and loves to share his in-depth knowledge of manta rays. His field experience with the gentle giants of the Kona coast is second to none.
Martina is a passionate manta ray advocate, marine educator and underwater operator. She lives in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii with her husband James.
Martina is committed to raising awareness and spreading knowledge about the gentle giants of the sea, so we can better protect them from harm – and people can experience manta rays (online and in real life) for generations to come.
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His love of the mysterious manta rays inspired him to teach others about marine life and the countless wonders that take place in our oceans. Martina has been photographing manta rays (and other underwater adventures) and leading people to swim with the gentle giants of Hawaii for over 20 years.
In 1998, Kerstin was certified as a scuba diver in the Maldives. After completing his Dive Master in Thailand (2010), he worked as a PADI Instructor (2011) working around the beautiful reefs of the Red Sea (Egypt), Bali, Thailand. and the Florida Keys. He moved to the Big Island of Hawaii in 2017.
Kerstin appreciates both small creatures and large sea animals and loves to introduce people to them. He is passionate about making manta rays safe and working for a sustainable future for the ocean.
One of the most amazing experiences a person can have. And one flapped its wings and touched my hand – it was unexpected and very interesting. It made me feel lucky to be so lucky. A good antidote to negativity!
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At this time of day the manta comes to feed. Visible lights attract zooplankton, and manta rays associate these lights with food. Read more about it here.
There are three recognized manta ray viewing locations in Kona, Hawaii. Read all about the different places here!
Other sites are only accessible by boat, and we dive directly from the sandy beach at the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. We love that we have private beach access for this unique and relaxing resort and that there are no boats involved in our manta ray cruise.
Meet at the beach activities stand for briefing and preparation; Full instructions will be emailed when ordering.
Manta Ray Night Snorkel Kona, Hawaii
We start with a safety briefing and share our knowledge about manta rays, the sea and other marine life. The action usually lasts 75-90 minutes, of which 30-40 minutes are spent in water.
We designed the tour to be relaxing and not too strenuous. We require that you can swim in water too deep to stand and have basic ocean diving experience. We encourage you to perfect your swimming skills in the hotel’s pool and sea and set your equipment and comfort in the sun. Our moonlight swims are open to anyone aged 12 and over (read why we recently raised the minimum age here). We also have guests over 80 years old…
Manta rays are famous pacifists; Steve Irwin was killed by a very different creature. In over 25 years of diving off the Kona coast, we have only seen a stingray twice. The singrays are shy creatures that live in fairly deep water. Read about how manta rays protect themselves and the difference between manta rays and manta rays here.
At certain times of the month, we get an increased number of jellyfish in the area (read about this phenomenon here).
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We offer Manta Ray diving tours. If you want to snorkel: Check out Hawaii’s ocean green list.
No, touching removes the protective layer of their skin and this is harmful to manta rays. Attempting to drive or touch them can injure or kill them. More on that here.
Water temperature usually does not change between day and night. This is usually 78-82 degrees Fahrenheit (21-25 degrees Celsius). Remember that you will not be moving in water for about half an hour; However, most of our guests feel that a wetsuit is not required.
We provide you with a high quality mask and snorkel, fins, life jacket and towel. Alternatively, you can use your own snorkel gear if you prefer. Bring your own bathing suit. Read here what gear you should use when swimming with manta rays.
More Manta Rays
Ahead: Download our guide to swimming with manta rays to learn everything you need to know, keep in mind guidelines for interacting with marine animals and more.
You will receive additional information after you register for your manta radio experience with us.
Practice swimming in an ocean or hotel pool with a mask, floats and fins (required) to make sure your gear is comfortable and fits.
Swim Day: Relax during the day. Eat something to avoid hunger while working. Finding a beach tent is not easy, so make sure you arrive early! And there is a plan B if you have to cancel due to sea conditions.
Swimming With Manta Rays
Sometimes sea conditions force us to sail by moonlight. We’ll let you know via text and email as soon as we know. If necessary, we will do our best to reschedule the event. See our cancellation policy here.
Our night diving adventures offer one of the best opportunities to experience stingrays in their natural habitat, but remember that stingrays are wild animals. Many factors affect their participation and they can change quickly.
We do our best to predict the likelihood of manta sightings by sharing sighting successes from previous nights, but there is still no guarantee that a manta will appear (like whale watching or fishing).
We do not offer refunds, discounts or rain checks if the manta rays are not visible.
Swimming With Manta Rays In Kona, Hawaii
If you are interested in diving with us (or have already booked), our team can be contacted between 9am and 3pm Hawaii Standard Time.
We are happy to help Monday through Saturday – closed Sunday, July 4th, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
We offer three different vacation rates at our Kona property on the Big Island of Hawaii. We love to share our passion for manta rays and interact with guests – if you want! If you sign up for a week with us, you get a free moonlight swim with manta rays (1 for 2).
Are you looking for all-inclusive accommodation? We begin our moonlight swim on the private beach at the legendary Mauna Kea Beach Resort. If you want luxury and relaxation, this is for you.
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Martina, thank you so much for the wonderful Manta experience on my 60th birthday. I really appreciate the video you made for us and I will never forget you!
Great support for building confidence through education and guidance… Manta rays are truly one of the most beautiful and graceful creatures I have ever seen…
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