A collective wonder of volcanoes, forests, ocean and wildlife lay in the islands of Hawai’i’. It is surely one of the remote archipelagos on earth. Hawaii is a cluster of 8 islands called Hawaii – the big Island, Maui – the valley isle, Kahoolawe – the target isle, Lanai – the pineapple isle, Molokai – the friendly isle, Oahu – the gathering place, Kauai – the garden isle & Nihau – the forbidden isle. Each island is known for its specialties and beauty of its kind.
While halting in the isle of Maui, we got a chance to snorkel in the deep seas. We chose to go to the island of Molokini about 2 ½ kms from the mainland. The island of Molokini is an extinct volcano in a shape of a crescent which provides protection from waves and powerful currents, making this area one of the top ten dive sites in the world. It is said to be a home for nearly 250 species of fish which are found nowhere else on earth. Our day begun at 6 am in the morning with a perfect weather taking us through the pristine waters of the Pacific Ocean. I had no clue about what we were about to witness, something so magnificent and unimaginable! They were the humpback whales swimming, splashing, playing and enjoying the warm waters of the island. While talking to a local on our boat, he mentioned that these whales come to the Maui waters to protect and teach their calves to survive since the water is warm and safe from the rest of the ocean. It was over-whelming to see 45 foot long whale spouting water through its blow-hole giving us a fantastic view, just what you see on National Geographic or the Discovery Channel. Being in that moment and capturing the site is beyond any explanation.
After our experience with the humpbacks we came across the most loving, playful and popular fish of the big seas – yes, I am talking about the dolphins! They frolicked, flaunted and danced in front of our boat. It almost felt as though they were trying to please us or as if they have put up a small act before us. Whatever it was, the spinner dolphins did their best to impress us to the core!
Finally after an hour and a half, we reached Molokini.The island was so accurately crescent shaped that it looked more carved than a natural one. The backdrop of the island fell 300 feet into the sea. The people of Hawaii believe that many sunsets ago, the powerful fire goddess Pele fell in love with a handsome Prince. Unfortunately, a charming gecko also had eyes for the Prince. An angry Pele settled the dispute by cutting the lizard in half and turning her to stone. The head of Pele’s rival is said to be a cinder cone near Makena Beach and the tail forms Molokini. In this mysterious crater, we saw and experienced the paradise of the fish and blue waters.
As soon as we reached the island, I couldn’t wait to plunge into the 150 feet deep sea. The temptation was so strong that I didn’t feel like losing out even a minute. We wore our gear and jumped into the water swimming as far as we could from the boat in order to get a more clear view of the corals and life beneath us. Since the island is 3 miles long we did get a chance to swim to a secluded spot. It was so enchanting that wasting a moment to even breathe was annoyance for me. The funniest part was that if you floated in the water without moving the fish came so close to you and the moment you moved they travelled as far as they could from you. Sometimes I just wanted to stretch my hands to touch them but it was an impossible task. After a while, a lot of people got back to the boat to munch and relax. We decided to stay back because the lesser the people, the more chances of seeing fish. While floating and relaxing in the water, we caught sight was a moray eel hunt its prey. It was the first time I ever saw an animal hunt another for his livelihood. So much time went by; it was so hard to come out from the water. While observing this serenity, we saw butterfly fish, parrot fish, squirrel fish, soldier fish, chub and so many more that we do not yet identify.
Someone even saw the reef shark while a few of us were in the waters. It was scary to hear that but to think about it, it’s their space and we were the ones who invaded it, and hence only we are responsible for everything that happens to us. This whole experience was so enriching and delightful. It was something you would never feel or see or even imagine exists in real life. It was really one of its own.