atlantis submarines maui: 50,000 undersea tours and counting!

Atlantis Maui_50,000th DiveAtlantis Submarines Maui achieved an ecotourism milestone yesterday, descending for the 50,000th time into the midst of the wondrous marine life found in the beautiful waters off Lahaina.

Guests of the 50,000th submarine dive, taking place at 9am on June 18, enjoyed an up-close and dry view of Maui’s undersea world–more than 100 feet below the surface–along with a fresh flower lei and commemorative photo to share in the memory of the occasion.

“For 22 years, we have been providing a fascinating tour experience that is sustainable, eco-friendly and rooted in promoting marine conservation, and sharing the importance of that message with all of our guests,” said Jim Walsh, General Manager of Atlantis Submarines Maui.

“We thank our tourism and community partners for their support in helping us to achieve this milestone and pledge that we will continue to be a champion of responsible tourism on Maui.”

Atlantis began offering submarine tours off Lahaina in 1991 and the company estimates that more than two million guests have shared in the exploration of Maui’s undersea world.

Atlantis operates the most technologically advanced passenger submarines in the world to offer its undersea eco-tour experience, the only one of its kind on Maui. The 65-foot, 48-passenger submarine is battery-powered and emits no pollutants as it moves quietly through the depths to avoid disturbing the fish and marine life. Guests enjoy the comforts of a spacious, air-conditioned cabin with large viewing portals and lots of head and legroom.

The commitment of Atlantis to sustainable tourism is seen in the ongoing transformation of the Carthaginian into a thriving artificial reef, a process that began with its planned sinking on December 13, 2005. Formerly a replica whaling ship and tourist attraction moored in Lahaina Harbor, the 97-foot Carthaginian was rusting badly, needed major repairs, and was destined to be scuttled deep in the ocean.

Atlantis acquired the vessel and retained a team of environmental and marine consultants to carefully place it a half-mile offshore onto a sandy bottom that was devoid of marine life. Today the Carthaginian serves as both a highlight of the tour experience and as a self-sustaining habitat for indigenous fish, coral and other marine life.

Atlantis’s eco-friendly tour operations and installation of the Carthaginian artificial reef contributed to the company being recognized by the Hawaii Ecotourism Association as a Certified Ecotour Operator with Gold status.

Atlantis offers six tours daily, departing Lahaina Harbor each hour from 9am to 2pm. The tour lasts for 1 hour, 50 minutes, which includes 45 minutes touring underwater. For more information and reservations please call 667-2224 or visit http://www.atlantisadventures.com/maui.

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