The Big Island of Hawaii is known for its enticing beaches, with soft, white beaches, stunning sunsets, and black lava rock that meets the bright blue sea. While all beaches here are special in their own unique way, this is a list of our top 10 favorites on the Island that create a complete experience and can quite possibly take your next family holiday to the next level.
Editor’s Note: Those who choose to travel are strongly encouraged to check local government restrictions, rules, and safety measures related to COVID-19 and take personal comfort levels and health conditions into consideration before departure.
Disclaimer: latelywithmeganrenee is not making any guarantees or promises regarding the accuracy, reliability or completeness of the information presented. This blog contains my opinions and doesn’t reflect the opinions of any organizations I might be affiliated with. I was compensated for this post. This post also contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.
1. Kua Bay
Kua bay has always been one of my favorite beaches on the big island of hawaii. It’s absoutely breathtaking with crystal clear blue water against black lava rock and soft white sand. There is also so much wildlife here and we always see whales and dolphins as well as turtles and even mantas playing in the waves! Parking is limited so arrive early for a good spot. They also have bathrooms and showers in the parking lot.
2. Kukio Beach at the four Seasons Hualalai
An incredible beach you most definitely should visit while you are here! The beach is public however there are a very limited amount of parking spots available. To ensure you get a spot I suggest arriving before 9 am. You’ll simply pull up to the guard gated entry and ask if there are any spots left for public beach parking. If you are lucky enough to get a pass they will direct you where to go. Watch the quick video tutorial we made below to get an inside view of the beach.
Local tip: Bring a wagon if you have one! You’ll be walking 5 min on a paved pathway and it’s easier to haul your beach gear. Don’t forget to bring an umbrella, beach chairs, snorkel gear, and a picnic lunch. They do have showers and bathrooms near the beach.
3. Hapuna Beach
Hapuna beach is almost always perfect for bodyboarding and boogie boarding alike. It has soft white sand, bathrooms, and showers. It’s also a great spot to see whales in whale season (December-February)
5. Mauna Kea Beach
Mauna kea is well known as one of the best beaches on the island for a reason! You’ll find the softest sand here and the warmest water. You also usually have the perfect soft waves that are perfect for a fun afternoon yet nothing dangerous or too large. Keep in mind that this beach is attached to the Mauna Kea Resort so the public beach parking is extremely limited. I believe it only has 40 spots open to the public. If you want a spot make sure you arrive by 8:30 am (even during the week).
There is a guard that will ask your name and the number of people in the vehicle. You’ll get a free parking slip and then park in one of the limited public spots. It’s a short walk down the hill where you do have access to showers and bathrooms. A wagon would be extremely helpful if you have one, otherwise, pack light!
6. Anaeho'omalu Bay
This is a perfect beach for kids located to the right of lava-lava beach club. The waves are minimal and water is protected from the bay! Careful not to swim to far out though because we just had a shark attack last month right here in this very bay! A woman was swimming alone pretty far offshore and was attacked by a tiger shark! Luckily, I believe she is ok, but I always recommend everyone to wear a sharkbandz since it releases energy that the sharks do not like and it gives me so much peace of mind! Order yours HERE!
7. Keiki Ponds
This is perfect for toddlers in tow! It’s protected from the surf and almost always offers calm warm water. My kids call this one the oceans swimming pool. It’s also great for adults to layout and read a book or anyone of doesn’t like swimming in waves :). Finding it is easy if you watch my video below.
8. Magic sands
Magic Sands beach gets its name because the sand magically can disappear and reappear the next day! Typically you’ll find a full white sandy beach during the summer and the exposed rocks during the winter. However, we watch it change day by day and it’s always one of our favorite spots especially at dusk watching the sunset.
If you are new here, please keep in mind this is on the top 3 most dangerous beaches in all of Hawaii. Due to its shore break and strong currents, the lifeguards often refer to it as “collar breaker coming in”. Some days, it’s very calm, and both my kids swim, other days we tell the kids not to go in too deep and keep closer to shore. Non the less it’s always a good time as long as you are aware of the conditions.
9. Punaluʻu Beach
Otherwise known as black sand beach, this is one of our favorite spots to see the giant blue turtles. I have never been here and not seen a turtle basking in the sun or swimming through the waves. I also find it fascinating to see black sand that is so soft and feels like white sand. It’s really a beautiful thing!
10. Kahalu'u beach park
This is a great snorkeling spot. It also has a great beginner’s surf break if you paddle out near the blue church. My kids like to come here just to play and explore which is perfect during the week. Weekends get a little crowded. Make sure you wear reef-safe sunscreen here to protect the reef and turtles! There is also usually volunteers that are here all week long to remind you 🙂
Remember, these are our top 10, but you still have so much to see and explore! Be sure to search our Hawaii page for more fun things to do while you are here! Aloha
Shop with us!
This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.