Hawaii Scuba Shack

Full Service Dive Center: The Hawaiian Scuba Shack
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

There is no better way to experience the beauty of Hawaii and the underwater sea life than snorkeling or diving. Thankfully, at Hawaiian Scuba Shack, you can go on a dive or scuba charter, see dolphins, whales, or manta rays, or rent gear to go on your own adventure. 

- The HawaiianIslands.com Local Expert Team

This full-service dive center located in Kailua-Kona, HI, proudly offers classes, scuba trips, gear rentals, repairs, and merchandise. Hawaiian Scuba Shack features a 28-foot boat, built in 2004, that provides snorkeling, diving, whale watching, and dolphin encounter opportunities for up to six passengers at once. Originally licensed as a hydro test facility in 2000, the Hawaiian Scuba Shack was transformed into a PADI dive center in 2012. 

The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) is recreational diver training and offers recreational diving membership. It was originally founded in 1966 but is a well-respected course for today’s recreational divers. At Hawaiian Scuba Shack, you can achieve your PADI certification. 

PADI Open Water Diver is the first scuba certification level. It allows you to learn all about scuba diving in a relaxed and supported learning environment. By the time your course is over, you will have the skills to dive virtually anywhere and will be a well-educated ambassador for the underwater world. This course is said to be applicable to over 70% of the globe. It also supports ocean protection through education and awareness, which properly trains divers to not harm the environment in which they are diving. 

In addition to the dive training, you can also enjoy whale watching, boat tours, private charters, snorkeling, and more. The Hawaiian Scuba Shack also offers rentals like scuba and dive gear, snorkeling gear, fishing gear, and paintball and airgun filling, along with offering hydrostatic testing and tank cleaning. Experiencing a Scuba Shack night manta ray dive with Jay is a notable treat as Jay has the biggest lights in the area, which means that many Manta rays will come close to check it out. 

Owner Jay Smith originally began his dive charter in 1978 in St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands. He then moved his operations in 1980 to Fajardo, Puerto Rico, and added another boat to the fleet. In 1999, he moved to Monterrey, California and since 1997 he has offered diving in Kona, Hawaii. Therefore, Jay has experienced many types of diving environments and can guide you safely through your experience. 

Guests rave about their experience with Jay and the other crew of the Hawaiian Scuba Shack company. One reviewer claimed that Jay took him and his children to many great spots during their charter, and they enjoyed seeing giant manta rays, and spinning dolphins. They further explained that they dove in various colorful underwater locations featuring abundant sea life. Guests also note the emphasis placed on safety, detail, and knowledge when experiencing a dive with Hawaiian Scuba Shack. 

Another notable review claimed that though the Hawaiian Scuba Shack is not as posh or fancy as other diving shops around, they are the best priced and most knowledgeable, which is why this reviewer has been using them for over 10 years. They claim this is the go-to spot if you want to shore dive or need gear when in Hawaii. Still another guest claimed that although they had been diving for over 15 years and had experienced the best that Mexico, St. Croix, Saba, Fiji, and Australia have to offer, the best dives of their entire life were with the Scuba Shack. 

In addition to being the best scuba experience on the Kona side, Hawaiian Scuba Shack is said to be the most affordable dive or snorkel trip gear rental shop in the area. Their prices are especially good in regard to scuba tanks and weights. They also have the DIN convertible tanks available which is an added bonus for the experienced diver. 

Hawaiian Scuba Shack gives you access to the beautiful waters of Hawaii in several ways. You can enjoy a chartered tour experience that will provide you with training and everything you need to enjoy a snorkel or dive experience, or you can rent from the shop and venture out on your own.

Insider Tips:
-On each dive/scuba trip, Hawaiian Scuba Shack provides food, beverages, towels, dive mask defog, anti-motion sickness medication, and sunscreen. 
-Hawaiian Scuba Shack has the brightest lights for legendary manta ray night dives. 
-Though the boat will hold up to six, Hawaiian Scuba Shack has been known to make trips with even fewer guests for a truly individual experience. 
-Considered one of the most affordable diving experiences in the area.