As the weather gets warmer there’s no better place to travel to than Maui, which is why I’m putting together a guide to my favorite and in my opinion the best beaches in Maui.
Be sure to take note of any travel restrictions while exploring these beaches.
I love Maui so much and it’s definitely a family favorite travel destination! Some years I’m lucky enough to make it out there two or three times.
Maui beaches have so much to offer and have some of the clearest waters and softest sand. Plus, some of my favorite diving!
You can also check out my other Maui guides that cover top beaches to visit, best restaurants, and where to stay here:
Be sure to take advantage of the fun activities like surfing, snorkeling, boogie boarding, scuba diving, swimming—the list goes on.
Of course, you can always just pop up an umbrella and plant your toosh in a beach chair if you just want to relax and soak up some rays.
There are also plenty of hotels or Airbnbs to look into that are nearby some of these popular Hawaiian beaches. You can check out my where to stay on Maui post to help you plan or my Airbnb Maui Hawaii guide.
11 Best Beaches in Maui
1. Big Beach
Big Beach—also known as Oneloa or Makena Beach—is seriously one of my favorite beaches of all time. It’s gorg.
This spot is most known for boogie boarding, swimming, or sunbathing and is located on the South Shore.
Definitely be aware of the waves though—I’ve been there on days where the waves were insanely large and scary.
The sand is so soft and the waters are a gorgeous turquoise color making it the perfect place for ultimate relaxation. This is probably my favorite beach to sit in the sand and read a book.
Honolua Bay Beach is the go-to spot for diving, snorkeling, or, depending on the time of year, surfing.
If you’re spending time here it is guaranteed that you’ll see fish, turtles, and coral. The marine life here is unreal!
I’ve seen some of the coolest sea animals here, including a giant barracuda, different types of eels, and too many sea turtles to count.
There’s a landing way that’s a great entry point for snorkeling that makes it easy to get in and out of the water.
Plus, the jungle that you walk through to get to the water is absolutely magical! You’ll love it.
This isn’t your ordinary place to lay and relax since the shore is very rocky—it’s not a sandy beach. Also, be sure to pack yourself lunch and snacks since there aren’t any stores/restaurants nearby, as it’s a bit secluded.
So the name might be a little intimidating, but this beach is seriously a must-see. It’s located off of route 30 in Mokule’ia Bay, right before Honolua Bay.
The beach sits near a dramatic cliff making a great photo op. Enjoy the soft white sand while sunbathing to the sounds of the ocean.
The summer is the perfect time to visit since the waves will be a lot calmer and easier to swim in. If the waves are large and there are surfers, it’s not the right time of year to try to go snorkeling!
The sand here is super soft and I love snorkeling here (when the waves are clam) and then lounging in a good beach chair and reading a book afterwards.
4. Wailea Beach
Wailea Beach is a Maui favorite—it’s beautiful, but if you’re visiting during peak season you might find it to be pretty crowded, since it’s located next to resorts.
You’ll find the beach covered in beach chairs and cabanas unless you show up really, really early.
The water is so blue making it a great spot for swimming, snorkeling, and boogie boarding. You won’t have to worry about bathroom, showers, or parking since they’re provided here.
Ka’anapali Beach is a must especially if you’ve always wanted to try cliff diving. If you decide to stop by you have to try cliff diving off of Black Rock.
This is a prime spot to reach ultimate relaxation and you can enjoy shopping at the many high-end stores at Whaler’s Village. There are also a number of restaurants and activities to explore while you’re in the area. For a list of the best restaurants in Maui, peep this post! Some of my favs by this beach are Hula Grill for lunch/dinner and Monkeypod for drinks.
This is a favorite beach with local families making it a great place to take your kids.
Located on the North Shore of the island just outside of Paia, this Baldwin Beach has everything you need like bathrooms, showers, barbecues, and picnic tables.
During the summer months, the water is great for swimming, surfing, and bodysurfing. There are also protected swimming areas where you can find even calmer waters.
If you’re up for it the beach also makes a great place for going on a long run with scenic views.
After you’re done exploring the road to Hana you can end at Black Sand Beach since it’s located on the outskirts of Hana.
This spot is obviously most famous for its black sand and pebbles that cover the shore, but it’s also very popular for the historical significance.
Enjoy the blowholes, lava caves, and stone arches that are throughout the beach state park. You’ll never see water sparkle as it does here.
Kama’ole Beach Park is part of a set of three popular stretches in the middle of Kihei, which is why you’ll see this beach also referred to as Kama’ole Beach Park III.
Covered in 1.5 miles of sandy beach this spot makes another great place to set up and relax.
It is a smaller beach and is rockier but it has incredible views of the blue water. There is also a larger grass area making it ideal for picnics and flying kites.
9. Hamoa Beach
Hamoa Beach is a gorgeous crescent beach with a nice surf break being surrounded by cliffs.
This is another very popular beach on the island being located near a popular resort, but you won’t have to worry too much about the crowds since this beach is located on the East side.
The sand is so silky here, which means you don’t need to worry about wearing water shoes.
While you’re out there take in those views of the gorgeous blue waters and watching the surfers go!
If you’ve been wanting to try windsurfing Ho’okipa Beach Park is the place to do it. You’ll probably find a number of professional windsurfers here because of the amazing waves.
This beach isn’t as well known for swimming due to the strong currents so definitely plan accordingly. But you can explore the number of small tidepools.
There’s also a protected area here for the sea turtles—you may even get lucky and catch one napping on the shore.
11. Red Sand Beach
Red Sand Beach, also known as Kaihalulu Beach, is a beautiful hidden cove. The water here is a dramatic bright blue, unlike anything you’ve seen.
The lava cliffs give the beach that red sand color making it very unique.
You do need to take a trail down to this secret cove so be sure to get all the directions ahead of time. Watch out for some nudists along this beach if it isn’t your thing. 😉
That wraps up my list of the best beaches in Maui! All of these beaches are so stunning and you’ll have such a great time enjoying the water while soaking up the sun.
And if you decide to visit any of these beaches be sure to snap a pic and tag me (@wtfab) so I can see where you went!
What to do in Maui: The Ultimate Maui Travel Guide
Where to Stay on Maui
Top 15 Best Restaurants in Maui
Airbnb Maui Hawaii: Best of the Best
Best Restaurants in Lahaina
How to Tie a Sarong
Best Sushi in Maui
9 Best Hikes in Maui for Epic Views
75 Hawaii Instagram Captions
Spending the Day at Hyatt Regency Maui
Best Breakfast in Maui: 8 Can’t-Miss Restaurants
Some of the nicest beaches are:
– Slaughterhouse Beach
– Ka’anapali Beach
– Ho’okipa Beach Park
– Black Sand Beach
– Big Beach
The South Shore is known to have calmer waters and more opportunities to snorkel.
The best time of year to visit beaches in Maui is from April to May or September to November for the best weather.
Elise Armitage is an entrepreneur and founder of What The Fab, a travel + lifestyle blog based in California. At the beginning of 2019, Elise left her corporate job at Google to chase her dreams: being an entrepreneur and helping women find fabulous in the everyday. Since then, she’s launched her SEO course Six-Figure SEO, where she teaches bloggers how to create a passive revenue stream from their website using SEO. Featured in publications like Forbes, Elle, HerMoney, and Real Simple, Elise is a firm believer that you can be of both substance and style.