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Hawaii: 10 Spectacular Beaches You Must Visit in Hawaii

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Travel Attractions – Spectacular Beaches in Hawaii

Hawaii is a state located in the Western United States. It is about 2,000 miles away from the U.S. mainland. It is the United States’ only state located outside North America. It is also the only archipelago state and the only one in the tropics.

Hawaii is also known as Big Island. It’s best-known for its lunar-like volcanic rocks landscape. However, it also boasts some crowd-pleasing white sand beaches like Punalu’u Black-Sand Beach, which is a photographic gem. Molokai is a remote island that’s not well-known to tourists. It has some of the most beautiful stretches and you’re most likely to meet locals.

It has a variety of beaches that offer options for surfers, swimmers, snorkelers, and nature-lovers. The Big Island is home to many black-sand beaches created by lava rocks. It also has a stunning green-sand sandy beach, which is one of four in the world.

Hawai’i’s beaches rank among the top in the world. The islands are a tropical paradise thanks to their golden coastlines and sparkling waters. Our list of top beaches on Hawaii’s Big Island will help you plan your day at the sea. The best part is that you can access all of them since Hawaii’s beaches all are open to the public.

Even better, you don’t have to visit these beaches on one island. You can travel to Hawaii with a multi-island tour, so you can spend every day exploring a different beach. Oahu is home to Waikiki Beach which is world-famous for its wide golden stretches and great surfing.

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1.Waialea Beach

One of the Big Island’s busiest beaches, this white-sand beach is a summertime favorite located on Waialea Bay. There is a gradual slope to the surrounding reefs, which protects the water from the turbulence and currents of the open sea, making this a top beach for families. These reefs are also home to some of the region’s most diverse marine life, and this is a top snorkeling and SCUBA diving destination.

During the winter, when the sea is too rough for swimming and snorkeling, visitors can often see expert surfers out on the waves here.

Waialea Beach
4925 Kahala Ave, Honolulu, HI 96816

Visitors will find restroom and shower facilities on site, however there is no lifeguard on duty. When looking for the beach parking lot, keep an eye out for the utility pole numbers, and turn when you see number 69-this indicator has become so much a part of the beach’s identity, many simply refer to it as “Beach 69.”

2.Papakolea Beach

Papakolea Beach (also known as Green Sand Beach) is not recommended for swimming because of its unpredictable currents and rough waves. It is known for its unique geology, which makes it one of the most popular beaches on Big Island. It is one of four beaches with similar sand colors around the globe.

This is due to deposits of the appropriately named Olivine crystal, which was formed millions of years ago by a volcanic eruption.

Papakolea Beach
Kaʻū district, Hawaiʻi

It is difficult to get to the beach. Only experienced hikers should attempt this journey. The two-mile hike through lava fields is followed by a descent down to the semi-circle bay that forms the beach. This stunning beach is located at the southernmost point of the island’s eastern side.

3.Makalawena Beach

A 20-minute walk through the lava leads to Makalawena Beach. This makes it a more peaceful beach, perfect for nature lovers and seclusion seekers. After passing the lava, the sandy becomes extremely soft and then gradually drops into the water. The shallow reef that runs along the shore makes this a great spot to snorkel.

Makalawena Beach
HI-19, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

Under the scattered trees along the shoreline are some spots that offer shade and a few tables for picnics. However, this is the closest you’ll get to any amenities. This beach is not suitable for children and inexperienced swimmers as there are no concessions or lifeguards.

Makalawena Beach can be found in Kona Coast State Park just north of Kona.

4.Spencer Beach

Samuel M. Spencer Beach Park, located on the Big Island’s northwestern shore, is a popular family spot due to its calm waters. The park has shady trees and a covered pavilion with tables and picnic tables. It is also a favorite spot for parents because of the soft sand. It is a great spot for snorkeling or SCUBA diving.

Spencer Beach
62-3461 Kawaihae Rd, Waimea, HI 96743

You can also begin the Ala Kahakai National Historic Trail here. This scenic hike offers stunning views of the bay, and the surrounding landscape. Stop by Pu’ukoholaheiau National Historic Site while you are in the area. It is home to a temple that Kamehameha I built in 1791.

5.Kamakahonu Beach

This little beach, also known as Kid’s Beach and King Kam Beach is a great choice for families with young children. It has soft sand and the water is extremely calm within the protected cove. Kamakahonu Beach is located between Kailua Pier in Kailu-Kona and the Kamakahonu N Historic Landmark, Kailu-Kona.

It has approximately 200 feet of waterfront but it is very popular any day of week.

Kamakahonu Beach
75-5660 Palani Rd Kailua-Kona, HI

The beach has an equipment rental shop that offers a wide range of watersport options. They have snorkel gear, kayaks, and motorized boats. The pier has a shop that rents equipment, and also offers lessons in SCUBA and beginner snorkeling. A restaurant is also available on the beach. There are many options within two minutes.

6.Punalu’u Beach

Punalu’u Beach is located on the eastern shores of Hawaii, halfway between Naalehu and Pahala. It is just off the Mamalahoa Highway. This makes it extremely easy to reach. Because of the granular volcanic rock that forms the shoreline, it is commonly called Black Sand Beach.

Swimmers who wish to take to the waters should first check the conditions. The water can be turbulent, but there is always a lifeguard who will have the latest information.

Punalu'u Beach
Hwy 11. Island of Hawaii, HI 96777

It is important to remember that the black sand absorbs heat from the Hawaiian sun so make sure you bring your own shoes. This heat attracts green sea turtles, locally known as honu, to this beach. You will often see these endangered animals swimming in the warm sand.

If you’re looking to snorkel at the black-sand beaches, however, there are excellent snorkeling opportunities at Ninole Cove. This is easily accessible via a short walk from the parking lot. The same path offers a beautiful seaside hike with stunning views.

7.Kahalu’u Beach Park

Kahalu’u Bay, which is conveniently located near Kailu-Kona and a popular tourist destination, is one of the most beautiful places on Big Island for snorkeling. Coral reefs are alive with a variety bright tropical fish, endangered sea turtles and sea urchins.

Even those who swim in shallower waters often spot schools of smaller fish and sea turtles. The water is usually safe and calm for children.

Kahalu'u Beach Park
Kahaluu-Keauhou, HI 96740

There are a few options available for vacationers who don’t have their own equipment. However, most people prefer Kahalu’u Bay Education Centre as the proceeds will go towards conservation and education about the bay’s unique ecosystem. The best snorkeling area is at the southern end of the bay.

A second tower, designated as the surf zone, marks the surf zone so that snorkelers are safe. Kahalu’u Beach Park has a bathroom and shower facility. There are also shady spots available for those who arrive in time to claim them. You can also find snacks and restaurants within walking distance of the beach.

8.Kaunaoa Beach

The popular beach with white sand is located along the Kohala Coast near Hapuna Beach. It is well-known for its snorkeling and swimming and also has a relaxed atmosphere. Because it is located on the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel’s property, the island’s first resort, it is also called Mauna Kea Beach. However, the beach is accessible to all.

The beach is protected by two reefs that sit at the ends of the crescent-shaped shoreline. These are both great spots for snorkeling.

Kaunaoa Beach
wy 19. Mile Marker 68. Kamuela, HI 96743

The hotel lights up the beaches and the surrounding reefs every night. This is another advantage. This attracts plankton which then attracts manta Rays which can be seen floating through the water. The hotel also facilitates nighttime SCUBA or snorkeling sessions.

9.Manini’owali Beach

Kua Bay Beach is also known as this white-sand beach. It lies on the western shore facing Kua Bay. This beach is located just north of Kona, within the boundaries of Kekaha Kai State Park. This beach is great for swimming and snorkeling in the summer.

In the winter, the waves can be quite large, making it a great spot for surfing. Many visitors are able to spot sea turtles and dolphins in the distance.

You should wear shoes or sneakers that can climb over the lava rocks to reach the sand. Beach umbrellas are also recommended as there isn’t much shade. Bring your lunch, snacks and water as there are not concessions.

Manini'owali Beach
Kekaha Kai State Park, Kailua-Kona, HI 96740

Lifeguards are now on duty at the beach, as well as facilities for washing and changing. Manini’owali Beach, like many of the most popular beaches on Big Island, can get very crowded at weekends. Parking can also be difficult.

10.Hāpuna Beach

Hapuna Beach, amidst lava landscapes & jagged shorelines on the island Hawaii is an ocean oasis. A half-mile stretch of white sand is found along the Kohala Coast, on the island’s western side. It offers ideal conditions for snorkeling and swimming.

The Kohala Coast, on the northern shore of Big Island, is the most popular beach. Many people love this half-mile stretch on white sand for its calm swimming conditions, which are great for snorkeling and bodyboarding.

Old Puako Rd, Waimea, HI 96743

Lifeguards are on duty and there are restrooms and showers available. There is also food and drinks, as well shaded picnic tables. Hapuna Beach is very popular so arrive early to get a spot in the parking lot and a place to lay your blanket.

The best spot for snorkeling is at the southern end of the beach. Experienced divers and snorkelers will love to explore the area south of Kanekanaka Point. This reef wraps around the point which divides Hapuna Bay from Waialea Bay. It offers a vast underwater world to explore. However, there are not lifeguards in the area.

FAQs About Beaches in Hawaii

What is special about Hawaii beaches?

Hawaii is known for its stunning beaches. There are many beaches in Hawaii: black, red, and white sand beaches, romantic bays, beach parks, and popular shorelines for people to watch.

Which part of Hawaii has the best beaches?

Oahu has 227 miles of shoreline and is considered the best Hawaiian island for beaches. Oahu boasts the most beautiful beaches in Hawaii because of the many protected bays and reefs around the island. Oahu also has gold-sand beaches and calm waters all year.

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