best beaches in hawaii best beaches in hawaii

21 Must-See Beaches in Hawaii: A Tropical Paradise

Are you a water baby? Are you planning to visit Hawaii on your next vacation? Here is a list of the best beaches in Hawaii that you can check out. 

Few of us enjoy planning and scheduling trips, but Hawaii has too many incredible beaches to visit in one lifetime without the list.

List Of Best Beaches In Hawaii

So this time, let us help you make the list of Hawaii’s best beaches.

1. Waikiki Beach (Oahu)

Waikiki beach is also one of the most well-known beaches on the planet!

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by AussieActive on

Travellers have visited this since Hawaii first appeared on the tourist radar in the 1900s. Waikiki is a golden, calm, crescent-shaped stretch of sand on the island of Oahu.

It is an artificial beach designed to be versatile and is great for kayaking, swimming, and stand-up paddleboarding.

2. Makena Beach (Maui)

Makena Beach is a backcountry beach park surrounded by extensive plant life. The beach has large white sand, open to the world for swimming, snorkelling, and fishing.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Miguel A. Amutio on Unsplash

Makena is arguably the finest on Maui. And indeed, the golden sand stretch on Makena beach is for the better part of a mile.

The “Big Beach” is nearly two-thirds of a mile long and 100 feet wide and is beloved by locals and tourists. Because there’s no drinking water nearby, the restrooms and picnic tables are easily available. There are also concession stands nearby.

3. Waimea Bay Beach Park (Oahu)

Waimea Bay Beach is famous for all kinds of water sports. The breathtaking 30-foot waves crashing on the shore make this one of the most stunning beaches on the island. 

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Rachel Cook on Unsplash

The waves die almost entirely in the summer, making the water perfect for swimming. And in the winters, the swells become awe-inspiring giants that draw the pro riders from November through February.

Visitors can find Waimea Valley nearby, where you can get out of the sun and explore the botanical garden and cultural center nestled in a lush valley.

Waimea, Sunset Beach, and Ehukai Beach (Banzai Pipeline) play hosts to some of Hawaii’s top surfing competitions, like the Vans Triple Crown.

4. Sunset Beach (Oahu)

Sunset beach is a famous surf spot on Oahu’s North Shore. If you are in Hawaii, do not forget to check out this place. 

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Miguel Correa on Unsplash

Sunset Beach in Oahu comes with many promises and enjoyment. Sunset Beach flows romance and majestic beauty.

The weather is perfect for visiting the beach all year round and enjoying the sights. And there will always be a beautiful sunset view over the Pacific Ocean. 

5. Hulopoe Beach Park (Lanai)

Lanai Island doesn’t always get lots of credit, but it’s a stunning part of the Hawaiian Islands, with Hulopoe Beach Park being one of the standouts.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Leo Rivas on Unsplash

The beach comes with broad views, a crescent-shaped shoreline, and some of the most special places to swim in the state. Missing out on Lanai’s Hulopoe Beach would be a huge mistake. 

Guests of the resort Four Seasons in Lanai have prime access to the stunning golden crescent, swimming, and snorkelling activities. Visitors often see friendly spinner dolphins jumping and playing in the water and humpback whales during winter.

6. Polihua Beach (Lanai)

If you are looking for a hidden, off-the-beaten-path place, then Polihua Beach should be at the top of your bucket list!

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Ajai Arif on Unsplash

Polihua Beach is approximately a 30-minute drive from Garden of the Gods, Lanai’s longest 1.5-mile pristine gold sand beach. It’s a beautiful place to spend the day, although the waves are slightly rough for surfing. 

Remember that strong currents? That makes this isolated beach unsafe for swimming, snorkelling, and even surfing, so you should enjoy its pristine nature and picturesque vistas.

7. Kumimi Beach Park (Molokai)

Molokai may not be Hawaii’s most popular destination, but it does offer some of the best beaches in the area. Kumimi Beach provides some opportunities for water activities.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Miguel A. Amutio on Unsplash

It’s safest and best to keep near the shore as the water can turn fairly choppy outside the reef.

Kumimi Beach’s tranquil, crystal-clear waters are perfect for a refreshing dip and diving.

8. Hapuna Beach Park (Hawaii)

Hapuna beach park is stretched around half-mile, located on the Kona-Kohala Coast. Even locals come to this beautiful spot for picnics and to hang out with friends.

On the Big Island, this wonderful location has the biggest white sand beach. Great snorkelling, swimming, and boogie-boarding are available, and it’s relatively level, uncrowded, and ideal for children.

Visitors can also observe a lava tube and some shade trees on the southern end. You can do almost any water-related activity at Hapuna Beach. You can even find cabins to rent here.

9. Poipu Beach Park (Kauai)

A beach area that’s made of three beautiful crescents. Poipu is the epicentre of Kauai’s perpetually sunny south shore. It showcases two crescents separated by a tombola (Nukumoi Point), where visitors can find great swimming and wading opportunities.

During the summer, Poipu Beach is exposed to seasonal high surf, with perfect conditions for surfers to ride those challenging waves.

Visitors have also seen Hawaiian monk seals very frequently at the Kauai beach, but it’s requested to be careful and respectful by staying at least 100 feet away from them. 

10. Kapalua Bay (Maui)

Kapalua Bay is an island blessed with beautiful sand strips and one of Maui’s best beaches. For a planned long day on the beach, it’s hard to cover this 800ft, crescent-shaped strip at the southwestern tip of Kapalua.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by John Bell on Unsplash

Kapalua Beach is also famous in Maui for kayaking, boogie boarding, SUP boarding, and swimming. The water feels cloudy in the middle, so travellers usually head to the north end for the best snorkelling.

When visiting Kapalua Beach, sit on the sand and gaze across the channel. The structure of long rocky outcrops at both ends of the bay makes Kapalua Beach the safest year-round swimming spot on this coast.

Visitors can also find colorful snorkelling on the right side of the beach, with abundant tropical fish and orange slate-pencil sea urchins. A rental hut is also available there for beach gear.

11. Waimanalo Bay

This broad sandy beach, backed by ironwood trees, is spectacularly famous for surfers and bodyboarders.

Waimanalo Beach is less frequently visited by tourists. It is an undiscovered place on the island with many hidden treasures. 

The 3-mile uninterrupted long sandy beach is perfect for sunbathing, relaxing strolls, and picnics, and it even features moderate waves for boarding enthusiasts. In the distance, the majestic Koolau Mountains add charm to the bay.

12. Mauna Kea Beach

When anyone thinks about beaches and Hawaii, one imaginary picture-perfect beach appears in mind, and Mauna Kea Beach is certainly one of them!

During the winters, the water waves become more powerful, but in the summers, the waves go flat, and the waters become calm, allowing visitors to explore coral reefs along the rocky southern end of the beach.

Doing snorkelling is best at the north end along the rocky ledge. This wonderfully uncrowded beach is open to the public through 40 parking spaces set aside daily for nonguests

Try reaching by 9 am and wait at the entry gate for a parking pass and other directions. Make sure to visit and witness the evening manta ray show at this place.

13. Kailua Beach Park (Oʻahu)

Kailua Bay’s jewel-toned seas are surrounded by a broad arc of sand, which is bookended by imposing volcanic headlands and has intriguing little islands rising offshore. Long, leisurely hikes, family vacations, and various water sports like kitesurfing and windsurfing are all great there.

The beach is ideal for swimming all year round, especially in the morning, and has a gently sloping sandy bottom and typically calm waves. Although it can blow at any moment, the wind usually picks up late afternoon.

It is the place where at sunset when it appears like the entire neighborhood has gathered on the tiny dunes to watch the sky’s reflection shine.

14. Wailea Beach (Maui)

Wailea Beach has it all, including a soft beach, calm surf, and clear water, ideal for almost all water sports. It is a crowded beach with many hotels, hip eateries, and upscale shops.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Abigail Lynn on Unsplash

Wailea Beach is the place to go if you want a resort vibe and don’t mind people going with that lovely scenery.

Everyone from Kate Bosworth to Jennifer Aniston has visited Wailea, so you may anticipate spotting a celebrity or two, given the upscale accommodations in the neighbourhood.

Kaho’olawe, Molokini, and Lanai can be seen in the distance during the winter, and if you’re lucky, you can even witness humpback whales breaching.

15. Hanalei Bay (Kauaʻi)

Between the Waioli River to the west and the Hanalei River to the east, Hanalei Bay is present. It is the largest bay on the Garden Isle of Kauai.

Hanalei is a stunning beach, crescent-shaped and surrounded by mountains. There are three beaches, and Black Pot Beach is the best and most famous. 

In summer, it’s allowed to do swimming, sailing, and paddle in the calmest waters, while the winter months are perfectly suited for thrill-seekers to roll up for a ride on the huge waves of the Kauai beach.

The waves are more active in the winter and draw surfers to the area. Each beach offers different conditions for swimming and surfing, so don’t assume it’s safe to enter the ocean anywhere along the continuous strip.

16. Hookipa Beach (Maui)

Hookipa Beach is an exhibition playground for windsurfers and big-wave riders. Hookipa Bay is a must-stop if visitors are on the road to Hana.

It offers a front-row seat to the Hookipa Surf Classic, the Red Bull King of the Air, the Aloha Classic, and many other well-known competitions.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Strauss Western on Unsplash

In the evenings, admire mesmerizing sunsets and honu (Hawaiian green sea turtles) that can come up to shore to rest. Take in the island’s breathtaking scenery and watch the epic surf from Ho’okipa Lookout, which also has food stands and portable bathrooms.

Visitors can dine with a view in Mama’s Fish House nearby. 

17. Lanikai Beach (Oahu)

One of Oahu’s most stunning beaches, Lanikai Beach (“Heavenly Ocean”), provides miles of fine white sand and tranquil waves ranging from fifty hues of aquamarine to turquoise.

Activities like swimming, kayaking, and stand-up paddleboarding are great ways to enjoy the beach’s calm waters. You can also enjoy the beauty of Mokulua island from a distance.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Jess Loiterton on Pexels

Officially, the beach is not a renowned snorkelling spot, but newcomers can still get a feel for the waters. They can also explore a wide variety of tropical fish and corals.

18. Hulopoʻe Beach (Lanaʻi)

Lana’i’s main beach is kept looking beautiful, with manicured lawns and clean restrooms, thanks to Pulama Lana’i’s legion of groundskeepers. Almost all the visitors love this free public beach.

It’s one of Hawaii’s finest, where even locals take the kids for a swim, tourists visit on day trips from Maui, and many lose track of time here. It’s located off Manele Road.

The gentle, curving golden-sand beach is long, wide, and covered by a rocky point to the south.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Jess Loiterton on pexels

The beach is rarely crowded, except on weekends when picnicking locals descend. Picnic tables and shelters are available under palms and public restrooms with solar-heated showers. The ferry dock is only an easy six-minute walk away.

For the best snorkeling, head to the left side of the bay, where there’s an abundance of coral and reef fish coral and reef fish are abundant. Just beyond the sandy beach on the left, visitors can find a low lava shelf with tide pools worth exploring.

Check out the protected shoreline splash pool, ideal for visitors with children. Don’t forget to hike up Pu’u Pehe, to the left of the beach, for an incredible view of the bay and beyond.

19. Ko Olina Beach (Oahu)

If you’re planning a trip to Oahu, staying in Ko Olina should be on your list. The resort community is located on the west side of Oahu and offers four lagoons, great weather, and a quieter atmosphere.

Ko Olina offers activities for everyone: swimming in the lagoons, nearby hikes, snorkelling, stand-up paddling, golf, and sailing from the Ko Olina Marina. It has plenty of options for places to stay, from the Four Seasons to vacation rentals.

And you won’t go hungry: Ko Olina station is filled with restaurants, and the four hotels also offer top-notch eateries. 

20. Haena Beach (Kauai)

Haena Beach is a section of Haena State Park on the north shore of Kauai. The park may be explored for days, but you can also spend time at the beach.

Haena Beach is a popular location for water sports. Here, swimming and shore fishing both take place. You may easily travel around by using a shuttle service, or you can park nearby for a modest cost.

21. Kapukahehu Beach (Molokai)

One activity you absolutely must do when visiting Hawaii is swimming on the island of Molokai. And Kapukahehu Beach is the location to fulfill that desire.

This little area, sometimes known as Dixie Maru beach, is less crowded than other Molokai beaches. You can spend a tranquil day relaxing in the sand because of the cove’s protection from the wind.

Best Beaches In Hawaii
Photo by Matheus Bertelli on pexels

Maru Dixie From the nameplate of a Japanese fishing boat, the cove’s name, “Dixie Maru,” was derived. In Japanese culture, “maru” is a suffix added to ship titles by sailors since this term denotes something cherished.

A reef surrounds the beach, and the waves are often calm in the summer. The ideal conditions for swimming and snorkelling are the time of summer.


 If you visit this place, check out as many places as possible. Do you think we missed any of the best beaches in Hawaii? Let us know in the comments.

Suggested readings: The Magical Ice Castle in New Hampshire


Last Updated on June 12, 2023 by somya909