One of the most fun family activities to do in Hawaii is snorkeling. Our favorite snorkeling location is on the North Shore at Shark’s Cove. Yes, this is it’s name, and although Sharks Cover and snorkeling don’t sound like the go together, don’t worry you won’t be snorkeling with sharks and we don’t usually tell our younger children the name, or they won’t get in the water. Everyone knows about snorkeling at Hanamau Bay, for a fee, but this is great snorkeling and at no cost. You have to have your own gear, but you’ll have fun and see all kinds of fish. In all our visits to Oahu we haven’t even bothered to snorkel at Hanama Bay.
Shark’s Cove is on the famous North Shore between the big surf beaches Wamaea Bay and Pipeline and is part of the Pupukea Beach Park. Because of it’s location on the North Shore, in the winter you can encounter large swells, but in the summer time it’s always been a great place to snorkel.
Shark’s Cove is not a sandy beach so you have to be prepared to hike down to the waters edge and then leave your shoes and towels there. On the South side are the tide pools that are fun to wade and explore. We have found it to be a popular place, but never too busy and although there is not a lot of parking, there always seems to be space.