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Top 10 Beaches on Maui


Ah, Beautiful Maui

This heaven-on-Earth island is home to hundreds of beaches, and each one of them has something different to offer. Whether you’re a surfer, swimmer, sea shell collector, sunbather, or boogie boarder, you will find a beach that suits you just fine when in Maui. From families to singles to couples, Maui is the perfect destination for beach lovers of all kinds. Check out the top 10 beaches on Maui:

1. Ka’anapali Beach

Just like Waikiki Beach, this beach is a popular one. However, it’s not so crowded that you can’t enjoy yourself. It stretches a mile and a half throughout West Maui. There’s a lot to do here, from parasailing and surfing to volleyball and sailing. Head to the north end to visit Black Rock for some awesome snorkeling. Look up, and you’ll see plenty of cliff diving going on, particularly at sunset as part of a traditional ceremony. Formerly a destination for Hawaiian royalty, today Ka’anapali Beach welcomes anyone regardless of their background.

2. Kapalua Beach

One of the more popular beaches around these parts, is highlighted by soft sand and a bay lined with lava rock and palm trees. Just a few minutes from Lahaina, this beach always ranks high in top-10 lists and there’s good reason for it. Families with young children, in particular, love Kapalua Beach thanks to its serene swimming and natural tide pools perfect for getting up close and personal with small marine creatures. If you visit in winter, you’ll spot whales migrating in the deeper waters. Head to the Shopping Village right nearby when you need a break from the sun to pick up souvenirs or grab a bite to eat.

3. Napili Bay

Is big on charm thanks to its quaint appearance and excellent swimming opportunities. Bury your toes in the golden sand, go snorkeling to discover some reef fish and take in a sunset while here. Situated right next to the Napili Kai Resort in Lahaina, there’s plenty of sand and gentle surf here to give your family hours of fun in the sun.

4. Keawakapu Beach

Is a hidden gem between Wailea and Kihei. Located in south Maui, this idyllic setting paradise gets you away from the hustle and bustle of the crowds that can really clog the island’s other more popular beaches. It’s relatively small but the swimming conditions more than make up for it. No matter what time of year you visit, the surf is always calm, and the white sand is perfect for sunbathing or constructing a sand castle. Don’t forget to try your hand at snorkeling the underwater reef.

5. Kahekili Beach

This is actually an extension of Kaanapali Beach, but this section is much calmer than its bigger cousin. Just 250 yards of lava rock and one hotel are what separates the two beaches from one another. This beach gets its name from the last king of Maui, and it’s only fitting that the snorkeling and scuba diving here is indeed fit for royalty. However, beware snorkeling here, especially with children, as hidden rocks and strong currents make for dangerous conditions if you’re not experienced. Bring a picnic and eat on the beach; there’s plenty of sand and it’s always well maintained.

6. Makena Beach State Park

Located in south Maui, this beach is actually made up of two areas: Big Beach and Little Beach. Big Beach spans 2/3 of a mile long and 100 yards wide, great for swimming, bodyboarding, skimboarding, and snorkeling. In general, the water is quite calm and flat, with a cove at the southern end of the beach ideal for little ones who want to splash and play. Little Beach at the far right over the lava rocks is known as a nude beach, so maybe stay away if you have kids. If you don’t mind, well, then, you’ll love this beach!

7. Baldwin Beach

If you love collecting seashells, this is the beach for you. Nestled on the North Shore of Maui, Baldwin Beach can be found at the six-mile marker of Hana Highway near Paia. It stretches 17 acres of North Shore coastline, with the west end dubbed “Baby Beach.” Because it’s protected by a reef, you get calm waters ideal for small children.

8. Wai’anapanapa State Park

Translating to “glistening water” in Hawaiian, you’ll come upon this park on the way to Hana at mile marker 32. Highlighted by smooth black sand, cobalt blue water, a blowhole, lava tubes, hiking trails, sea arches and even ancient birthing pools, Wai’anapanapa State Park encompasses 120 acres featuring picnic areas, cabins, tenting areas, and restrooms.

9. Honolua Bay

North of Lahaina is popular with surfers and snorkelers alike. This is because it’s not only beautiful, but also colorful and brimming with activity. In winter, surfers gather here for extreme waves, but in the summer, you can’t beat it for snorkeling and scuba diving. If you want to watch the surfers from a safe distance, head up to the bluffs right above the beach, and perhaps even take in a sunset.

10. Hamoa Beach

Located in East Maui, this beach is unique because it’s shaped like a crescent just a half mile past marker 51 on Highway 31. It’s a calm, cool, laid-back beach where people come just to bask in the sun and chill. You can also do your share of swimming, bodysurfing, snorkeling and surfing. It’s great for singles, couples and families, with salt-and-pepper sand, crystal clear water, and shady picnic areas.

You are sure to find a beach in Maui that suits you, whether you just want to sit on a beach chair and get a tan, or swim and snorkel with the family. If your trip also includes a side trip to Oahu, we’d love to hear from you here at Hoku Hawaii Tours. Let us set something up for you so you can explore our island in style!