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About Makai Travel


More than 30 years ago we began running well organized, budget friendly dive trips for Ken's college students. We have guided dive groups to places such as The Philippines, Fiji, Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac, Cozumel, The Bahamas (land and live aboard), Turks and Caicos, The British Virgin Islands, Honduras, Cabo San Lucas, Hawaii, Saba, Bonaire, Florida Keys and Palm Beach.. During this period we have developed close relationships with wholesalers and dive operators in the industry, which has allowed us to put together the best possible packages for our groups.

We decided to incorporate under the name Makai (which means "toward the sea" in Hawaiian) for all our travel arrangements. Our goals continue to be simple ones...to provide safe, fun, affordable trips, while offering those traveling with us the opportunity to learn more about the wonderful underwater world we love.

About Ken

Ken Balvin is completing his 35th year as a professor at Eastfield College. He holds the distinguished rating of Master Scuba Diver Trainer, with 9 specialty ratings, and he's also a Nitrox Instructor for those interested in technical diving. Over the years he has taken great pride in the large number of divemasters and instructors he has trained. Ken feels their continued assistance with classes is a tremendous benefit to the students and an important reason his courses come so highly recommended.

Aside from teaching, motivating others to do their best is the philosophy Ken follows day after day. He received a great honor when he was chosen to carry the Olympic Torch on December 12, 2001. He was nominated by students and friends as someone who has been an inspiration in their lives and as an individual who embodies the Olympic spirit.

It should come as no surprise to learn that his motto is, “Life is Good.”

About Sue

Sue is proud to be a wife (married to Ken for 41 wonderful years), a mother (2 fantastic children Kenny and Kristin) and a teacher (27 years in Elementary Education with a Masters in Reading, as well as being a Mesquite Apple Corp recipient). She has loved the sea her entire life, starting with wonderful TV shows such as Sea Hunt, The Aquanauts, Adventures in Paradise and of course, the Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau.

Sue will eagerly share her love and knowledge of reef fish, invertebrates and their behaviors (while Ken searches for sharks and other big animals, she seeks nudibranchs and blennies!), and is happy to provide the names of the dive sites you’ve visited...in case you forget to log your dives!

Sue is your contact for all travel arrangements.