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Reviews (1,253)
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All reviews spinner dolphins fish lava formations the big island snorkeling trip great trip kona coast hawaiian history mate ride captain adventure tubes boats cruise pele cliffs
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Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Frequent travelers who have to state this was the best tour we have been on..brought the teenage grandchildren who were kept in rapt attention by the cuteness of Conner and the intelligence and knowledge of “JC”..(ok, cuteness too. ) JC knows more about island archeology, history, marine life than anyone we know and we are professors. The girls -14 & 17- told us they learned more from this trip then they have in semesters of school.
But, the reason we selected this trip was the early arrival at the bay which gave us plenty of time to snorkle before the crowds. Equipment was great, lunch was too, and we can’t do anything but compliment the professionalism, knowledge, and just general goodness of the entire experience.

Date of experience: April 2021
Thank 617judithw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Captain Z, Guest Relations Manager at Captain Zodiac Raft Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Oh I'm glad JC and Connor were able to provide such great service in both the knowledge and eye candy aspects. They are both very great additions to our team here at CZ. We are happy you enjoyed the Beat the crowd snorkeling tour. Come see us again!!

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Reviewed 30 March 2021

I had some friends visiting from the mainland, and we went on Captain Zodiac's Beat the Crowd snorkel cruise to Kealakekua. What a fantastic experience. We were super lucky to have spectacular weather and water conditions, and we were treated to sightings of spinner dolphins and a small reef shark. Obviously, none of those are things you can control or plan for, but they made the trip super special.

Importantly, the cultivated aspects of the tour were exceptional. The three of us rode with Captain Rick and First Mate Cameron, on a zodiac boat with a family of five. The ride from Honokohau to Kealakeakua was beautiful, and though I was born and raised on the Big Island, it was the first time I'd done that. The ride was exciting but also felt very safe for the four young kids aboard. We stopped for some historical sight-seeing on the way out and on the way back, and Rick's delivery was informative and engaging. The small tour size felt intimate, and we got to chat quite a bit with the other group and Rick and Cameron. I've been on the Fair Wind snorkel tour to Kealakekua a few times, and honestly, I liked this more.

The "beat the crowd" timing was awesome because we never felt crowded in the water. It was also great to be able to do some snorkeling, take a lunch break, and then do some more. I know this will be a highlight of my friends' trip, and I will definitely plan on it for future visitors.

Date of experience: March 2021
Thank 808sachi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Captain Z, Guest Relations Manager at Captain Zodiac Raft Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded 4 weeks ago

Mahalo for the time it took to write such a detailed review. We appreciate all our guest and we are glad we could show you more of an smaller adventure ride. Each of the older companies here in Hawaii really do cater to different customers whether it be a slower ride for the extended family age group or a fast ride with adventure seekers. Happy you could share it with us.

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Reviewed 27 March 2021 via mobile

We had a private charter with Captain Zodiac. There were nine people in our group and it made sense to do the private charter instead of paying individually for a shorter tour. The day began with Captain Rick and the Amazing Amanda getting us settled on the Zodiac. Basically the day was ours and they made sure we got to check all our boxes. Coming out of the marina a pod of Spinner Dolphins swam alongside us. Captain Rick gave us a very informative tour of historic Kona. We then headed straight to Captain Cook’s Cove for snorkeling. Even in four foot seas the Zodiac rode quite well. It was a better ride than I was expecting. Snorkeling was incredible. Water visibility was at least 100 feet. We stopped for a lunch provided by the crew. Afterwards we went into a few coves and saw some pretty big lava tubes. We even saw the god Pele frozen on the side of a cliff. Our crew was very knowledgeable about Pelagic life and Hawaiian history. This was certainly a highlight of our vacation. I’d recommend this company to anyone and would use them again.

Date of experience: March 2021
Thank RobQ358
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Captain Z, Guest Relations Manager at Captain Zodiac Raft Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded 31 March 2021

Mahalo for the excellent recommendation. All the great information in the review is great. Also we are happy that we were able to meet all your needs, which is what makes private charters so great! Captain Rick and Amanda really appreciate the shout outs. Hope to see you all again!

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Reviewed 26 March 2021 via mobile

What an incredible experience! We were so lucky to get in this tour with Chuck at the last minute!
We decided at the very last minute to try and book a snorkel tour. After phoning around we were put in touch with Tre at Captain Zodiac . She was super helpful and got us on a departure 2 hours later. The team was fun and professional.
The boat team, Conner and Captain Chuck was spectacular. Chuck handled the zodiac with profound skill. They were very safety conscious and at no time did my family or I felt unsafe.
Chuck remembered everyone’s names and a little about each of the passengers on the boat. Really a great experience.
The scenery was great, and snorkeling with 100ft plus visibility was amazing.
Thank you for a great day.

Date of experience: March 2021
Thank clc000
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Captain Z, Guest Relations Manager at Captain Zodiac Raft Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded 30 March 2021

We are very happy that we could fit you two on the snorkel trip and that you called when you did!! Chuck may be a salty sea dog but that only means he has great experience with our boats! I'm sure him and Connor had a great time out with you guys too! Please come back out with us again and bring some friends! I'm positive Chuck will still be here when ever you do come back to Hawaii.

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Reviewed 24 March 2021

We chartered a boat for the snorkeling trip with 6 adults and 5 children (ages 3 to 7). Captain Rick and Elliot were great at keeping the kids in mind during all parts of the trip. They really enjoyed seeing the dolphins en route, and the snorkeling at the bay. The adults could not have been more pleased as well. All in all, it was a beautiful day and Rick even kept us out a bit longer to see a few things we would have missed otherwise. Their attention to our needs and wants was much appreciated. I highly recommend this company!

Date of experience: March 2021
Thank karenhQ4107VJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Captain Z, Guest Relations Manager at Captain Zodiac Raft Expeditions, responded to this reviewResponded 24 March 2021

It was nice to have your family on a Private Charter. The kids were so well behaved and our crew member Elliot thoroughly enjoyed them! We are happy that we could meet your expectations on this tour and hope you come back out again with us.

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