Maui Beaches

It goes without saying that Maui is home to some of the world's most beautiful beaches. The South side of the island and central coast are great from morning through midday. The surf in West Maui remains relatively calm throughout the afternoon. The North Shore more than earns its reputation as a world-class surfing destination. 

Here's a breakdown to help you find the best Maui beach out there. No matter where you end up, remember your reef-friendly sunscreen — you'll want to ensure that the area stays healthy for your next visit! 




Makena Beach State Park, aka "Big Beach," is aptly named. A must-see long, wide beach with gorgeous views. Surf can be large, good for body surfing, but be safe. .

Wailea Beach is not only a sizable golden sand beach, it is lined with luxury hotels (in case you need to cool off with a tropical drink) and a paved walking path.

Keawakapu Beach is great for swimming and laying out, but can get windy in the afternoon. A favorite beach-side bar and restaurant lies on the north end.

Kamaole Beaches I, II & II are separate beach parks in the middle of Kihei town with several access points, bathrooms and showers. Great in the morning and at sunset. 

Sugar Beach is an incredible six-mile beach that stretches from north Kihei to Ma'alaea. Perfect for a long morning walk, passing Kealia pond. Windy in the afternoon. 

Haycraft Park lies at the north end of Sugar Beach, at the end of several Ma'alaea condo complexes. Nice grassy area and picnic tables, along with beach access.

Launiupoko Beach Park covers more than 6 grassy acres, making it a prime spot for launching a stand-up paddle board. Arrive early to ensure a parking space. 

Baby Beach, on the north end of Lahaina, is protected from ocean waves with a fringing reef, making a calm swimming area great for families. Go early here too. 

Kaanapali Beach, a popular glorious expanse, is fringed by Maui luxury resorts. Beach activities launch from here and you can access Whaler's Village open-air mall. 

Honokowai Beach is a lovely 4.6-acre park and is a good spot for saoking up the sun and snorkeling where you are likely to catch sight of a turtle.

Pohaku Park (locals call S-Turns) is great for surfing during the winter and stand-up paddle boarding the rest of the year. 

Kapalua Beach is a sheltered cove with good snorkeling on the north end. Toss in a nice cover-up to hit some fine dining overlooking the beach.

Baldwin Beach has trees on one side and ocean on the other. The surf can be rough, but there is a reef protected section on the far west end.

Waianapanapa State Park,  a 122-acre state park near Hana, has a black sand beach, hala forest, fresh water caves, lava tubes and trails.

Koki Beach Park has a sheltered red sand beach dusted with Hawaiian peridot. See our Road to Hana page for more East Maui beaches. 

Destination Maui Vacations
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380 Huku Li’I Place, Suite 206
Kihei, HI 96753
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