What an incredible few days we've had in Hawaii! It took us a whole day of traveling on Wednesday to get from New York to Seattle to Honolulu where we stayed for the night before flying to Kailua Kona on Thursday morning. We grabbed a rental car and found our hotel which is right in the middle of the tourist/shops area and opposite the beach. We spent a couple of hours wandering around checking things out and shopping then got changed and headed over to the dive company head quarters where we had booked a snorkel trip. We headed to the marina and hopped on the boat that took us out to the reef area where we were to park. The ride out was pretty crazy, the swell was massive some waves getting to about 20 foot and the boat was going up and down over them like crazy, it was a little scary as the boat staff said it was as big as they had seen it but really fun going up on the waves and crashing back down. Once we made it to the site we jumped in the water and snorkeled fit about 45 mins, seeing lots of colorful fish and coral although it didn't compare to the great barrier reef or Thailand. I started to feel a bit I'll as the swell was still pretty big and choppy and we were bobbing up and down in the water so we took a break and got back in the boat and that's when I started to go downhill. We all sat around and waited for it to get dark for our second swim and I had a couple of spews off the side of the boat, feeling pretty darn seedy. Once it got dark the captain turned some lights on in the water off the back of the boat and almost immediately three massive manta rays swam up to the boat. We geared up and then they turned a ring of lights on the bottom of the ocean on and we all swam over to it. The divers sat on the bottom and us snorkelers swam on the surface and we shone our torches up and down at each other and attracted tons of tiny plankton between us. The plankton in turn attracted the manta rays who started swimming all around us. There were 16 rays in total and ranged in size from 6 foot wide to 12 foot wide, absolutely massive. They would swim towards the torch light then tumble onto their backs so their bellies almost rubbed against ours. It was one of the most amazing things I've ever done or seen, what an unique experience! We spent a bit of time hanging with the rays then I had to get back in the boat to have another spew which was unfortunate. We all warmed up and headed back to dry land thankfully. We were a bit stuffed after that so we grabbed some late dinner and crashed.