The Complete Big Island Gear Rental Guide

Big Island Guide Travel Guide

If you’re looking for Big Island gear rentals, look no further.

Famous for warm, friendly waters and diverse native marine life, the coastal areas off the Big Island of Hawaii is a waterman’s paradise. There’s no shortage of incredible snorkeling, diving and surfing areas within easy reach from the major hotels and resorts on the island, but there’s a common problem for every visitor to the island: where do you get gear and supplies for your water activities?

Thankfully, there are plenty of resources throughout the Big Island that offer gear rentals and provide recommendations for good spots you may not be aware of, but if you’re planning to spend some time in or on the water during your Big Island stay (and you should!), take a look at the following to fully prepare yourself for a memorable day.

Snorkeling Gear Tips

Renting vs. Buying
While an investment in a decent set of snorkel gear is a worthy one, it may not be financially viable to own your own gear unless you plan to go snorkeling frequently. If you generally have to travel by air to your snorkeling destinations, we recommend that you buy a mask and snorkel but rent some fins so you don’t have to haul so much in your luggage. Ultimately, the decision between buying and renting comes down to your budget, your frequency of planned snorkeling trips, and personal preferences.

Renting or borrowing gear can be hit or miss, but there are some great shops on the Big Island who can get you outfitted in decent gear. As you might imagine, the rental shops in Hawaii go through a lot of equipment, so going with a professional shop will help make sure your gear isn’t worn out or damaged and ensure your mask fits properly. Prescription masks are even available to rent at some of the bigger shops. Renting gear for your first few outings can also help you recognize what you prefer in snorkeling equipment, making a purchasing decision easier when the time comes.

Big Island Gear Rental – Snorkeling

Here’s where we recommend visitors get outfitted for a snorkeling trip on the Big Island:

Snorkel Bob’s
A mainstay of Hawaii water rentals and outdoor activities, Snorkel Bob’s is a great option for casual and beginning snorkelers in need of some advice. From full equipment rentals that include wetsuits, fins, masks, beach chairs, and floatation devices, Snorkel Bob’s perfectly blends the support and selection found in a rental chain alongside the friendly small-shop vibe you find in Hawaii.
75-5831 Kahakai St.
Kailua-Kona, HI 96745
(808) 329-0770
Hours: 8 am – 5 pm daily
The Shops at Mauna Lani
(808) 885-9499
Hours: 8 am – 5 pm daily

Boss Frog’s Snorkel Rentals
A well-established snorkel and outdoor equipment rental company in Hawaii, Boss Frog’s is a small chain with locations throughout the state. As such, you’ll likely have a wide range of available gear at your disposal and a good support network should something go wrong. You can also rent your gear online using their store.
75-5725 Alii Dr
Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
(808) 331-1880
Hours: 8:00 am to 5:00 pm daily

Hilo Ocean Adventures
They offer an array of quality rental gear, including snorkel, scuba, surf and SUP gear. You can rent equipment for 3 hours, daily or weekly rates. They also offer scuba certification, boat tours, and swim lessons in either an indoor heated pool or in the ocean.
1717 Kamehameha Ave
Hilo, HI 96720
(808) 934-8344
Hours: 8:30 am to 6pm daily

Some Good Snorkeling Spots around the Big Island

West Side
Honaunau Bay (Two-Step)
Waialea Bay (Beach 69)
Kahaluu Beach Park
East Side
Richardson Ocean Park
Kapoho Tide Pools

Big Island Gear Rental – Surf, Boogie Board and SUP

Miller’s Surf
A small, locally-owned shop, this is one of the friendliest and most knowledgeable places to get outfitted with gear you’ll be comfortable in for snorkeling, surfing or boogie boarding. They’re truly local and they’ll point you in the direction of some amazing beaches and hot-spots where the daily conditions are perfect for your chosen water activity.
76-6246 Alii Dr # 102
Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
(808) 326-1771
Hours: 8:30 am to 6 pm daily

Kahalu’u Bay Surf & Sea
This local surf shop is incredibly well-equipped and offers the latest in surf, kayak, SUP and snorkel gear. They are also skilled surf instructors who offer students expert insights and proper techniques.
78-6685 Alii Dr
Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
(808) 322-4338
Hours: 8:30am – 5:00pm daily

Kona Boys
Whether you’re looking to surf, snorkel, kayak, or canoe, Kona Boys can provide everything you need to make your water adventure a memorable one. With their conveniently located shop and beach shack, you can rent gear with ease on either end of Kona.
79-7539 Mamalahoa Hwy.
Kealakekua, HI 96750
Kona Boys Beach Shack
75-5664 Kaahumanu Pl
Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
(808) 328-1234
Hours: 7:30am – 5:00pm daily

HYPR Nalu
Offering surf, SUP and canoe rentals, as well as selling apparel and their incredible performance paddle and surf boards, this high-end shop also gives excellent surf and SUP lessons.
75-5663A Palani Rd
Kailua-Kona, HI 96740
(808) 960-4667
Hours: Mon – Fri 8:45am – 4pm
Sat & Sun  9:30-2:30

Hawaii Ocean Sports (Beach Hut)
This fantastic beach shack rents snorkel gear, SUP boards, kayaks, canoes, hydro bikes, boogie boards and cabanas, all in a convenient location, right on Anaeho’omalu Beach. Their friendly staff will help you get setup with all the gear you need for a fun-filled beach day.
Anaeho’omalu Beach
Waikoloa Beach Drive
(808) 886-6666 ext. 3
Website
Hours: 8am – 4:30pm daily

Some Good Surf and Boogie Boarding Spots around the Big Island

West Side
Kahaluu Beach Park
Maniniowali Beach (Kua Bay)
Pine Trees Beach
East Side
Honoli’i Beach Park

Some Good SUP / Kayak Spots around the Big Island

West Side
Anaehoomalu Bay
Keauhou Bay
Kealakekua Bay (permit required to kayak/SUP)
Kailua Bay – enter via the harbor stairs or Kamakahonu Beach

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Honaunau Bay (Two Step)

One of the best snorkeling areas in the world resides at Honaunau Bay, better known to locals as Two Step for the natural rock formation that provides easy access to the water – even if you’re wearing flippers