Beginning March 2020 the Covid pandemic forced closings of businesses, organizations and borders and the ripple effect was felt across the globe by people, animals, land and marine ecosystems. Travel stopped. As disappointing as this was I wondered, what would the impact of these closures mean for coral restoration programs and nascent reefs dependent on tourist dollars for protection and preservation of these fragile and vital ecosystems? It’s taken months to reconnect with some of these restoration programs that cut staff in order to survive. Reduced tourist dollars meant less people to protect the reefs, to do outreach, education and the work of restoration. Results vary but one organization I found, Kahaluu Bay Education Center in Hawaii, shared positive observations. Kahalu’u Bay is a truly unique, 4.2-acre bay located in Keauhou, less than hour from the Kona Airport on the Big Island of Hawaii. The education center was established in 2011 to promote reef-friendly practices to visitors in an effort to protect the bay’s fragile ecosystem and ensure the bay and park remain a clean, safe and welcoming place for visitors and residents. In Hawaii, during Covid, the decline in tourism has taken an economic toll on the state, with annual visitor numbers dropping significantly from pre-pandemic numbers*. Although the number of visitors was slashed, this has provided a time for environmental healing for Hawaii – specifically within the coral reef ecosystems. During 5 months without tourists in 2020, natural environmental improvements and recoveries have been observed at Kahaluu beach park, “Because Covid gave us a moment of pause, it has seen this rejuvenation,” said Cindi Punihaole, director of the Kahaluu Bay Education Center. “The bay is bountiful with different species – new species that we haven’t seen for years… like the baby Akule. That’s because the bay is prolific right now!”.