When you talk about Hawaii, one of the first things that will probably spring up to mind are gorgeous beaches. Indeed this American state is blessed with wide range of sandy stretches that draw millions of tourists every year.
On the Big Island of Hawaii, one of the most prominent beaches is Hapuna. Aside from being the widest beach on the island, it is also ranked one of the highest in terms of tourist facilities. While a number of the Big Island’s beaches feature grainy black sand and volcanic rocks which you need to climb over; Hapuna stands out due to its fine soft white sand, well complemented by its clear light turquoise water. It is no wonder Hapuna is consistently included into the list of top beaches not only in Hawaii, but in the entire United States.
Hapuna is actually a designated state beach park. In fact, one of its best features is the exquisite landscaped park that surrounds the beach. Hapuna is the “classic” type of sandy stretch that measures .5 miles long (800 meters) and 200 feet wide (60 meters). It has all the characteristics of being that perfect swimming and sunbathing site. Over the years, this Hawaiian beach has also become a favorite among families because it has spacious parking lots, picnic pavilions, and lifeguard services.
Other facilities you can find here include restrooms, showers and concession stands. If you are visiting Hapuna with small children, the northern section of the beach is the best spot for you because the water here is calm and shallow. In stark contrasts, the southern end of Hapuna draws in the thrill seekers. This is because this section is adorned with sea cliffs, and daredevils, unwisely, climb up the cliffs to jump into the ocean.
On top of swimming and sunbathing, snorkeling is also a popular activity on Hapuna. The most ideal snorkeling spot is towards to rocky south point where the water is calm. If you are a skilled enough swimmer, you can snorkel all the way to Waialea Bay which is a mile down the coast. During winter, the surfs goes up and are bigger shore breaks. This is the time when the Hapuna becomes a sought after bodysurfing hotspot. However, take note that waves can go up more than 3 feet high.
You need to be a bodysurfing expert to tackle such waves. Otherwise, it is safer to leave the water and just enjoy watching the pros do it. If you want to get a little more active while in Hapuna, go for a hiking trip along the western coastal trail of the Kohala, and you will rewarded with outstanding ocean vistas. If you take time to look on the other side, the lush mountains and clouds peeking through them will easily captivate you.
Should you wish to stay near Hapuna, there are accommodation facilities that are within easy reach to this lovely beach. Some of the closest lodgings include the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. At certain times, Hapuna Beach’s excellent traits bring in a fairly large crowd. So it can get relatively busy. However, because of Hapuna’s size and atmosphere, it is highly likely that you can tolerate the crowd and have a really good time.