Enjoying the sand and the surf isn’t just a vacation activity here in Hawaii, it’s a way of life. Easy access to gorgeous beaches and the endless activities they bring is one of the luxuries that draw so many people to the Big Island year after year. But with the influx of people to the island, finding a slice of island paradise away from the crowds is becoming increasingly difficult. If you’re looking for a peaceful place to enjoy the sand and surf, you’re going to have to go further than the city beaches. Here are some of the best-kept secret beaches of the Big Island. While they may require a bit more effort to find, the semi-solitude you’ll enjoy will be worth it—we promise.
Just beside the very popular Kealakekua Bay is one of our favorite snorkeling areas. Here, visitors can avoid the crowds of the neighboring bay and still experience some of the best snorkeling on the Big Island. While the beach itself is rocky and not necessarily ideal for lounging, you will also find the area perfectly suited for surfing. It’s a popular fishing spot for local Hawaiians so be sure to give them some space and try not to scare all the fish away!
Shipman Beach, also called Haena Beach, is a small white and black sand beach near Puna. Surrounded by private land, reaching this beach requires a four mile hike. The way isn’t particularly difficult, though, and with solid shoes it’s not hard to navigate across the lava rock and through the tropical landscape. Visitors who do are rewarded with a serene cove that is often completely devoid of other beachgoers. The waters are also calm and there is a grassy spot nearby that is perfect for picnicking.
Makalawena Beach in Kekaha Kai State Park is a gorgeous white sand beach on the Kona coast that boasts pristine, blue water and lots of shade courtesy or plentiful Hawaiian palm trees. This beach can also only be approached by foot which keeps the masses away. During the week, there may be only a handful of other visitors dispersed along the shore. The shortest approach is only 1.1 miles (2.2 miles round trip) making it fairly doable for families with adventuresome kids.
Thirty miles south of Kailua-Kona lies a large, secluded salt and pepper beach. To reach it, you’ll pass through a quaint Hawaiian fishing village that is far removed from the touristy downtown Kona most visitors are familiar with. A short walk through Hawaiian jungle and over a seemingly fresh lava flow bring beachgoers to an expansive beach that is truly a hidden gem. It’s a popular spot with locals so be respectful of private property signs on your way in and consider only visiting on the weekdays.
We hope you enjoy our list of secret beach of the Big Island! If you would like to look at some real estate during your visit, please call us at 808.217.8500. We’d be happy to show you around!
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