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Hamoa Beach on the Hana Highway


Hamoa is no ordinary beach for our Maui vacation rental guests to experience. The crown jewel of Maui beaches on the Hana Highway has an international following and is frequently chosen one of the best beaches in America.* You will find it located 3 hours from our Wailea condos but a world away in a tropical paradise.

This epic Maui beach is where Hawaiian royalty came to surf and was reserved exclusively for them. Known as “The Waves of Puhele,” it became open to all when the daughter of a Hana chief lifted the restriction by surfing it herself in the 16th century.

Framed by coconut palm trees, volcanic black rock, sea cliffs and rolling grassland, this crescent shaped beach is 1,000 feet in length and 100 feet wide. The soft sand is a mixture of coral and lava in the colors of gray and gold. A day at Hamoa is an idyllic escape on your Maui vacation and one of most romantic beaches in the Pacific.

Hamoa has captured the attention of celebrities from Ernest Hemingway to James Michener and land steward Oprah Winfrey. She purchased over 200 acres around Hamoa to protect the open spaces and cultural access fisherman have had for generations. In 2005, Ms. Winfrey donated 182 acres to the Maui Coastal Land Trust.

Does Hamoa live up to its hype? It certainly does but you have to drive the Road to Hana and cross 59 bridges and snake around 600 eye-popping curves to come here. Hamoa offers the safest swimming in summer and fall.

Once you arrive and breathe in the spectacular surroundings, there is a short hike down concrete stairs to the sandy beach with its crystal clear waters. You will want to bring food and water as there are no services nearby. If you arrive early in the day it will be easier to find parking and the beach can be less crowded. Best swimming is in the center of the beach with its sandy bottom. On both the left and right sides there are rocks below to watch for when you are in the ocean.

Caution: Steps required to access beach. No lifeguard on duty. Hamoa is not protected by a reef and high surf can be dangerous. You may see experienced boogie boarders in beach areas that are not safe for beginners.

Tip: Read our guide to the Hana Highway for more information on area sights and attractions. Don’t forget snacks, sunscreen, hat and water.

Facilities: Public restroom. Limited parking. Recent reports indicate that showers are not available.

Best for: Swimming, boogie boarding and surfing.

Directions: Turn left on Haneoo Road several miles beyond Hana. The beach will be on the right side of the road.

*Dr. Beach frequently picks Hamoa as one of the top ten beaches in America. Hamoa ranked fourth in 2013.

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