Keone'ele Cove at the center of Pu'uhonua o Honaunau (refuge) is one of the best spots to turtle watch. The honu often heave themselves up on the soft sand for a nap, inspiring plenty of onlookers with cameras. If you venture out a little further onto the pock-marked expanses of lava just past the cove you also have a good chance of catching a honu or two. These easy-going creatures allow the tide to wash them in and out of the crevices while they graze on the plants clinging to the lava rock. Even if you don't see a hungry honu, there is some spectacular sea life hanging out in the crevices. Snorkeling, sunbathing and diving are strictly prohibited at the cove. There is a better place for snorkeling and diving just up the narrow, one-lane road near the exit of the parking lot. You can see it to your right when facing the ocean at the cove. It is marked with 15 mph sign. It is called Two Step because the snorkelers enter the water off a naturally formed lava step into 10 ft. of water. The next step drops off into 25 ft of water. The visitor center at Pu'uhonua o Honaunau is open 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m. every day. For more information on the park visit or call (808) 328-2288.

Visitor Travel Guide