You’ll find Hamoa Beach about a ten minutes drive from little Hana. The beautiful drive is easy to make, with lots of great scenery along the way. There isn’t a parking lot, so you’ll need to park on the side of the road and walk down the steps to the beach. Parking won’t a problem because the beach is never crowded.
This beach is not protected by any fringing reefs, so big surf is extremely dangerous. Strong currents are also present outside of the bay. The safest time to swim is during the summer and early fall. Closely monitor ocean conditions at all times and don’t be crazy – obey all those postings and warnings.
The south-eastern coast of Maui near Hana has provided creative inspiration for many who have found their way to this unique and powerful place. While completing his 12th book, “Hawaii”, the unspoiled natural beauty led author James A. Michener to call Hamoa Beach the most perfect South Pacific beach.
James A. Michener wrote, “Paradoxically, the only beach I have ever seen that looks like the South Pacific was in the North Pacific. Hamoa Beach on Maui Island in Hawai’i; a beach so perfectly formed that I wonder at its comparative obscurity. Formed into the shape of a half moon, it is rimmed by boulders of lava and guarded by tall volcanic needles. Pandanus [Hala] trees line the shore, which offers a crescent of black and silver sand.”
Musicians, writers and artists continue to be drawn to its shores and mountains.
The beach is a long strand of soft grey sand tucked between lava rock outcroppings. Because the waves break right at the shore, it can be a dangerous beach, especially during high surf. Body surfing and boogie boarding can be difficult here due to the shorebreak.
You KNOW it’s beautiful, but if this is your first trip to Maui, going to Hamoa Beach is going to take some planning. First off, you’re probably going to be staying on the other coast. Maybe near Kihei, along in that area. You’ll have to plan a day to take a trip to the Hana Coast – along the Hana Highway. Hamoa Beach is along that highway. And in there is a problem.
If you’re not careful, you’ll end up spending hours sightseeing along the highway and by the time you get all the way out to Hamoa Beach, well – it will be late in the day and you’ll be driving back in the dark. What I suggest here, is to book a day in a small hotel in Hana, and go all the way there, stopping along the way from Kihei. Then the next day, spend a lot of time exploring the beaches and inlets along the coast. It is really spectacular and you cannot go wrong this way.
If you cannot book a hotel in Hana, and chances are you can if you start early enough, then make the trip directly out there first – explore Hamoa Beach for a bit – then on your way home, explore the coast stopping at the sights that you want to see. And take some snacks! Have fun!