It’s my opinion that the worst Hawaiian beach ranks near the best beach on any other island in the world. However, certain Hawaii beaches cater to different age groups. One beach might be best for college kids on vacation, singles looking for romance, newlyweds looking for a small, romantic beach or families that have brought their children along for a Hawaii beach vacation.
Our goal is to identify the ideal beaches in Hawaii so that you can use them in planning cheap Hawaii vacations or as part of your overall Hawaiian vacation experience no matter what your travel budget.
Here’s a list of some of the best Hawaii beaches for vacation according to our traveling friends including facts and characteristics of each tropical beach in this island paradise according to their observations while they were there on vacation.
If you have any Hawaii beach photos taken while on your trip to Hawaii, please share them and your personal reviews of the Hawaiian resorts and beaches that you visited while traveling in the islands.
1.)Lanikai Beach, Oahu, Hawaii - Lanikai Beach, along Mokulua Drive, is known as Hawaii's best swimming beach. This mile long golden beach is clean, most of the time surf-free, and filled with beautiful palm trees. The offshore Mokulua islands have small beaches where you can land your watercraft and take a leisurely swim.
2.)Hanalei Bay Beach, Kauai,Hawaii - Hanalei is the largest bay on the island of Kauai. This is a white sand beach that looks stunning against the water. As if that scenery isn’t enough to take your breath away; behind the beach is a backdrop of waterfalls and lush, emerald green mountain peaks. The beach is two miles long, but rather narrow at only 125 feet wide, and bordered by the Hanalei River to the east and the Waipa River to the west.
3.) Papohaku Beach, Molokai, Hawaii - Papohaku Beach is as close as you can get to the image of tropical islands that you see pictured in popular travel and tourist magazines. It’s located on the west end of Molokai and offers swimming, snorkeling, body boarding, and surfing. This is the beach where you can enjoy a worry free vacation and truly get away from everything while getting a deep tropical tan and a toned body from all the water sports and activities.
4.) Hulopoe Beach, Lanai, Hawaii - Hulopoe Beach is around 5 minutes from Manele Bay and located next to the Four Seasons island resort at Manele Bay. This Hawaii Beach is the very popular swimming and picnicking spot on the island of Lanai. One unique aspect of this beach is that it has a safe tidal pool area where small children can swim.
5.) Waikiki Beach, Waikiki is a common gathering place for visitors from around the world. On one of the most popular islands in Hawaii, Honolulu, this Hawaii beach is located along the main strip of Kalakaua Avenue. It is centrally located where world-class shopping, dining, entertainment, and musical entertainment will all be right at your fingertips.
6.) Punalu'u Beach, Punaluu, Hawaii Punalu'u Beach is the most famous black sand beach in Hawaii. Panaluu Beach is located off Hwy 11 on the south shore, south town of Hilo. This calm black sand beach in Hawaii is a perfect spot for people who want to do nothing but just relax and soak in the natural elements on their Hawaiian beach vacation.
7.) Mauna Kea Beach, Kohala Coast, Hawaii - Mauna Kea Beach is situated along the Kohala Coast. It is one of the best Big island beaches to spend some time on. Mauna Kea Beach is considered one of the top 10 beaches in the world which by all rights should bump it to the top of our list of best Hawaiian beaches. If your vacation plans include a trip to Mauna Kea Beach, you should plan to get there early. One of the Big Island resorts maintains the beach and only issues beach permits a certain number of visitors so to insure your access, try to be first in line!
8.) MAUI BEACHES - Thirty miles of heavenly sugar sand with one known for its volcanic black sand. Read our tips for finding secluded, private beaches that are well kept secrets.
We have been asked by tourists into the nudist or naturalist lifestyle recently about where in Hawaii you might find topless or nude beaches where clothing is optional. The best information that we have at this time on topless or nudist beaches in Hawaii is that officially all state beaches require clothing. For instance one of Kauai’s most popular nudist beaches in the past, Donkey Beach, is now patrolled by security guards in efforts to enforce a no nudity policy.
There are areas where the naturists persist in their attempts to push the envelope and defy the efforts of the park rangers to enforce a ban on topless and nude sunbathing.
For those who want a relaxing clothing optional steam bath, there is a privately owned property on Highway 130, mile marker 15 near Hilo that also has a large clothing optional guesthouse known as Steamvent Guesthouse.
In summary, whether you want your beaches to be covered in white sand or if you prefer an exotic black sand beach, Hawaii has the perfect tropical beach for you.
Return to Cheap Vacations and Travel Ideas for more information on vacations on the best beaches in the world.