A Guide to Maui: Namalu Bay (Cliff House)

Cliff House


Also Known As: “Cliffhouse”

Location: 100 yards north of Kapalua Bay

Depth: 10-40 ft.

Good for seeing: Orangespine unicorn fish, convict tang, aʽama crab, Hawaiian green sea turtles, octopus, eels, and the occasional manta ray

Best time of year to snorkel at Namalu Bay: Summer is the best time of the year for snorkeling at Namalu Bay, particularly early in the mornings before the tradewinds have picked up. What makes Namalu such a unique location, however, is how the inside of the cove is tucked out of the wind, and even on days when the tradewinds are blowing Namalu offers a protected, lee shore where we can escape the wind.

Reasons we might not snorkel here: Like other locations on the northwestern shore of Maui, large winter swells can make Namalu inaccessible, and this is a spot which is best enjoyed during the summer months.

Trips offered to Namalu Bay: While Namalu Bay isn’t one of our regularly-scheduled snorkeling destinations, our Kaʽanapali snorkeling tour will sometimes tuck in to Namalu on days when the winds are too strong or the surf is too large at spots such as Honolua Bay or Mokuleiʽa Bay. Onsummer days when the northwestern coastline is particularly beautiful, we will sometimes snorkel at Namalu as part of our Discover Olowalu Snorkel Sail.