Hanauma Bay Reservations

Hanauma Bay Reservations Online System

Due in part to covid restrictions and new guest limits, Hanauma Bay reservations have been a popular topic over the past few years with visitors having to adjust to the new daily capacity allowances. Previously, over 3 million people visited Hanauma Bay on an annual basis. According to the Department of Parks and Recreation, the high number of visitors have caused years of neglect and abuse leading to depleted marine eco-systems. In an effort to safeguard the marine life in the bay, the state of Hawaii opened a Marine Education Center in August 2022.  In addition, efforts were made to limit daily access to allow the fragile ecosystem a chance to recover and replenish.

In order to accomplish this, Hanauma bay is now closed Monday AND Tuesday and has shortened hours until 4pm on all remaining days. The state of Hawaii has also implemented a new Hanauma Bay Reservations system in order to limit the number of visitors allowed into the bay each day. While the recent changes are great for the welfare of Hanauma Bay and the precious marine life eco-system, we are making this post in the hopes of helping our kama’aina and visitors make the most of their visit to Hanauma bay. In this blog post we’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions we get from our guests:

What is the Hanauma Bay Reservations System?

How do I make a reservation for Hanauma Bay?

What are my options if I don’t get a reservation?

As a bonus, we encourage you to read until the end to discover a secret insider tip to gain access to the bay without having to deal with the Hanauma Bay Reservations system!


What is the Hanauma Bay Reservations Online System?

The Hanauma Bay Reservations System is an online portal that allows visitors to reserve a spot to enter the bay ahead of time. The system was put in place to help manage the number of visitors to the bay, which would help to reduce the negative impact that humans have had on the marine environment. The system was first implemented in 2017 as a pilot program and following the covid-19 pandemic has become a permanent fixture at the bay. Despite the hassle for visitors trying to gain access, the Hanauma Bay Reservations system has been successful in reducing the number of visitors to Hanauma Bay, which has helped to improve the overall health of the marine environment.

The Hanauma Bay Reservations system requires visitors to book their tickets online 48 hours in advance of their visit. To do this they must select a specific day and time slot for their entry. The obvious downside is that the chances of simply showing up to the bay and obtaining entry on a whim are slim to none. You must now obtain a reservation in order to guarantee entry into the nature preserve.

NOTE: While reservations guarantee you entry into the Hanauma Bay nature preserve, it does not guarantee parking. For information about Hanauma Bay parking alternatives, see our blog post
Hanauma Bay Parking – The 4 Best parking alternatives to consider when the bay parking lot is full.

How do I make reservations for Hanauma Bay?

The Hanauma Bay Reservations System can be found at the following web address https://www.honolulu.gov/parks-hbay/home.html

We’ll go over step-by-step instructions on navigating the Hanauma Bay Reservations website:

STEP 1: Navigate to Hanauma Bay Reservations System

Using your phone or desktop computer (preferably a computer, we talk about this in our Expert Tips For Hanauma Bay Reservations post), navigate to the Hanauma Bay Reservations system using the link above and click on the large button labeled “PROS”, which stands for Parks & Recreation Online System. On the next page, select “Hanauma Bay” and you will be directed to the Hanauma Bay Reservations page. 

STEP 2: Read all Announcements

Read through the announcements at the top of the page as the rules of access can change at any time.

STEP 3: Determine the date & time of your Hanauma Bay Reservations (HST)

Scroll down near the bottom of the page to view the date and times available. This part is very important, … Online reservations can only be made 48 hours in advance starting at 7:00am Hawai‘i Standard Time (HST). As you can imagine, there are a lot of people that want to visit Hanauma Bay on a daily basis. However, with only a limited number of spots available daily, 1,155 online reservations to be exact, tickets get scooped up fairly quickly, sometimes in as little as 5 minutes.  Because of this, you need to be ready on the reservation website and be prepared to click your preferred time before 7am.

You’ll notice below, many time slots sold out 1-3 minutes after the reservations open. This will give you a good indication of which time slots may be in higher demand. Although it’s worth noting that day-to-day comparisons show no predictable patterns of high-demand vs. low-demand times, on the days preceding our booking we noticed the times that showed a pattern of being open for a longer widow of time (ex. 9:20, 9:40 and 10:10 a.m).  For our reservation, we decided to target these 3 time slots. For those invested in securing a reservation, noticing the patterns for a few days to a week before making your reservation could be helpful in knowing which time will be available when you book.

Note: All listed times are in Hawaii-Aleutian standard time (HST) and no login is required after selecting your preferred reservation.

Hanauma Bay Reservations are in high demand and are very limited. SO BE READY TO BOOK!  Talk about anxiety inducing – take a deep breath, you got this! For more tips on ensuring a successful booking process, check out our expert tips to reserve your spot!


STEP 4: Select preferred time slot

Once the clock strikes 7:00 a.m. (HST), make sure you’ve selected the CORRECT DATE and your PREFERRED RESERVATION TIME. A captcha will pop-up on your screen. Check the box confirming that you are indeed not a robot and you will automatically be redirected to the next screen to fill out your personal details.

STEP 5: Fill in personal information

Once you’ve arrived at the next page, begin filling in your information. First name and last name are required. Forego the middle name since time is of the essence here. Proceed to your email, email confirmation and phone number (also not required but you make the call). Double check to make sure your details are correct as you will not be able to change details once the reservation is completed. The name must match the photo ID that you will be using upon check in.

Note: At the top left-hand side of the form will be a ticker that tracks in real time how many tickets are currently available for this time slot.  In subsequent bookings, we noticed that even if this may show that tickets are available, this may not be the case and should not be relied on. The fact that you have made it to this page or any of the following pages does not guarantee your spot is reserved. The key is to get in, fill in details, make payment and submit as quickly as possible.

STEP 6: Select Reservation Type and Quantity

Once you’ve filled in your personal information and proceed to the next page you will be met with your reservation options. Pricing is as follows:

Non-Residents: $25 (plus service fee of 2.35%) per ticket
Residents: (with Hawaii State ID) Free
Adult Active Duty U.S. Military: (with CAC Card or Privilege Card with ID) Free
Children: (12 and under) Free

Select your reservation type and quantity. Check the box at the bottom left of the screen that reads “I understand and acknowledge…” and Select “Place Order”.

 Note: You will only be allowed to reserve a MAXIMUM of 5 Adult and 5 Child Tickets per day. If your party requires more tickets, you may need multiple people on the website to reserve tickets.

Hanauma Bay Reservations for Non-Hawaii Resident will show total cost with 2.35% service fee added. Once “Proceed” is selected, a pop-up payment portal will prompt you for your payment details.

Hanauma Bay Reservations for Hawaii Residents, Active Duty Military and Child Tickets will show a $0 total cost. Once “Proceed” is selected, you will be taken to a confirmation page.

STEP 7: Submit Payment (if required) and DONE!

FOR State of Hawaii Residents & Active Duty Military members,  you will be taken to a Confirmation page with reservation details.

FOR Non-Hawaii Residents, you will be taken to a Payment portal page where you will be given less than 10 minutes to input payment information and submit order. Keep a close eye on the timer as the site will strictly adhere to the timer and will promptly kick you out of the payment portal should your time be exceeded. After submitting payment, you will be taken to a Confirmation page with reservation details.

Screenshot your confirmation and you are DONE!

Note: Reservation confirmation will also be sent to the email you provided at the beginning of your booking.

Payment Portal screen for Non-Hawaii Resident will prompt you for payment details. 

Reservation Confirmation Page. Once confirmation is finalized, save this page for the day of your visit. This will also be emailed to you.

What Are My Options If I Don’t Get A Reservation?

As far as we know, there are no after-market sales of Hanauma Bay Reservations tickets. Tickets are booked under the person who made the reservation and are therefore non-transferrable and cannot be sold after the reservation has been made.  However, don’t fret if you were unsuccessful at booking your Hanauma Bay reservations. There are still some options available to you.


The first option is you may purchase a walk-in ticket at the park when it opens at 6:45 a.m. While not ideal, walk-in tickets are a viable option for those looking to still get their chance to visit Hanauma Bay. Walk-in tickets must be used on the day of purchase and you should plan on arriving early as the daily walk-in tickets are limited and sell out very quickly. Also important to note is that all members of your party must be present in order to obtain a walk-in ticket. 


Here at Snorkel Hanauma Bay, we do everything we can to help you secure a reservation even if you’ve missed your opportunity on the Hanauma Bay Reservations online system. Contact us or go ahead and book our transportation package to take the hassle out of booking your own reservation. We’ll take care of the rest and assist you in securing your spot!


The Snorkel Hanauma Bay Ohana


2 of The Best Times of Year to Visit Hanauma Bay

2 of The Best Times of Year to Visit Hanauma Bay

If you’re planning a trip to Hawaii, one of the must-see attractions is Hanauma Bay. This stunning nature reserve is located on the southeast side of Oahu, and it’s a popular destination for tourists and locals alike. Hanauma Bay is home to an abundance of marine life, and it’s one of the most remarkable places in the world to go snorkeling and explore the underwater world. However, if you want to make the most of your visit, it’s important to choose the best time of the year to visit Hanauma Bay.

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