Top 5 Hawaiian Beaches - Where the World Stands Still

14 November 2013

From the urban sophistication of Honolulu's Waikiki Beach to the quiet, tucked away coves throughout the lush Hawaiian Islands, this tropical US state is best experienced on its many beaches. Towering cliff tops and dense rainforest create a stunning contrast to the turquoise waters along Hawaii's beaches and these idyllic settings seem to be around every corner. Whether you're after a relaxing beach getaway or an action packed surf holiday, you've come to the right place.

There's no better place for a beach holiday than Hawaii. The problem isn't finding a beach but rather selecting which one to enjoy. Depending on the type of activity you're after, there is a beach to meet any expectation. Here's a look at some of our top five Hawaii beaches.

 Waikiki Beach

Honolulu's Waikiki
Waikiki is one of the most famous beaches in the world. With that comes tourists and at peak times the beach can become crowded.  Still, it's hard to resist the warm, shallow waters and white sands of this urban oasis. With excellent views of Diamond Head and the modern skyline of Honolulu behind, this beach offers an air of international sophistication. Moderate waves allow for an enjoyable swim and the historic hotels and high rise resorts are just steps away. A memorable Hawaiian experience is taking a night time walk along the beach where flaming tiki torches line the coast, adding a bit of unique island flair.

Tunnels Beach - Kauai
Anyone who loves crystal clear waters and excellent snorkelling conditions will love Tunnels Beach. Divers too will enjoy the nearby underwater caverns.  Located on the north shore of Kauai,Tunnels Beach is slightly off the beaten track but well worth the effort to get there. Boogie boarding is popular here as the waves are strong, but not overly intense for a swim. Mountain views and swaying palm trees make for a lovely setting and sunbakers will be in their element.

Waimanalo Bay Beach Park - Oahu
This stunning four mile beach of soft white sand is relatively secluded and is a great spot for a leisurely ocean side walk. Even on busier days there is plenty of room to enjoy the sand and surf and the stunning scenery is completely mesmerising. The beach has recently become popular for wedding photography which should tell you something of the romantic setting this beach has to offer. For swimmers the waves can be a bit rough but quite good for boogie boarding and body surfing, both of which are popular activities here. The nearby beach park offers shaded areas and picnic tables and public facilities are also available making this a great beach for a long day out in the sun.

Makalawena Beach - Big Island
Makalawena Beach is a pristine natural setting on the eastern coast of the big island of Hawaii. Unspoilt and uncrowded, Makalawena's remote setting required a little more effort to access but the ten minute hike from the road opens up onto a captivating scene – one that you may find difficult to leave. The beach is not patrolled but beachgoers are found enjoying a swim or tackling the waves for a surf.  Be sure to bring a towel and sunscreen and enjoy one of Hawaii's most inviting locations.

Kaanapali Beach - Maui
Here's a fun filled beach with a vibrant atmosphere and a host of fun filled activities to enjoy. While the almost two mile long beach can get busy, it's generally not crowded like Waikiki Beach and there's plenty of room for all.  The several nearby hotels and resorts offer lots in the way of entertainment and water sports are no exception. If you're feeling adventurous, experience the thrill of parasailing or grab a surf lesson and hit the waves. Like all Hawaiian beaches this is a beautiful spot to throw down a towel and enjoy a good book.

The Aloha State is one place that will not disappoint. No matter what kind of tropical holiday you're after, you are sure to find your place in Hawaii.

Todd Sturm

I currently live in Brisbane, Australia. No matter where my travels take me, I enjoy experiencing each destination from the perspective of the locals. Some of my favourite attractions include historic sites, national parks and architectural landmarks.