The best snorkeling on the Big Island’s windward side is in this sprawling network of tide pools. Here Kapoho’s lava-rock coast is a mosaic of protected, shallow, interconnected pools, some heated, containing a rich variety of sea life. You can pool-hop for hours, tracking saddle wrasses, Moorish idols, butterfly fish, sea cucumbers and much more. Coral gardens can be found in farther out pools; sea turtles like the warm pocket to the south and octopuses are known to visit.
Wear reef shoes to avoid cutting your feet on the lava rock, and remember to keep your distance from sea turtles: 50yd in water and 20ft on land.
From Hwy 137, turn on Kapoho Kai Dr just over 1 mile south of Four Corners. Park at the intersection with Kikiao St on the south side, and walk the remaining 0.5 miles through the neighborhood (follow the paint markings).
The Kapoho Tide Pools were destroyed by lava flows in 2018.