Malu'aka Beach, located in front of the Makena Beach & Golf Resort on Maui, is great for sunbathing, swimming and snorkeling. The bay is quite large, so it never felt crowded, unlike many other hotel beaches on Maui. The waves are small due to the lava rock that frames the bay on both ends. You won't have to swim far to get from the sandy part to the lava rock on the south end which is covered with coral. Brightly-colored fish such as moorish idol, manini and trumpatfish feed on the coral and will be easy to spot. Snorkeling is a must here, so bring a mask and snorkel or rent one at the hotel. We spotted a sea turtle swimming just a few feet from us near the black rock on the south end. Snorkeling equipment, kayaks, lounge chair shades and other gear can be rented from the Activity Center. The staff is very friendly so don't be afraid to ask for a few pointers to discover the best places to snorkel in the bay. If you plan to snorkel a lot while in Hawaii, you are better off purchasing your own gear. A set of snorkel, mask and fins rents for $18 per day at the hotel.
Swim out towards the black volcanic rocks on the south end and watch colorful fish feed near the coral. Yellow and blue tropical fish of various sizes swim right next to you if you are careful not to disturb the water with your fins. We even saw a sea turtle swimming just a few feet from us. After exploring the bay under water, head to the hotel for a light lunch next to the blue pool, surrounded by tropical plants. Hotel guests can pick up complimentary towels by the pool or from the Activity Center. Lounge chairs are also provided free of charge to hotel guests. If you are not staying here, Malu'aka Beach is open to the public like all the beaches in Hawaii, but remember to bring your own towel and gear. The Pool Bar is a great spot enjoy a casual lunch by the pool. The by offers spectacular views of the Molokini Island, a famous snorkeling and scuba diving destination. You can catch a catamaran from the beach first thing in the morning and visit Molokini which is about 45 minutes away by boat.
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