Makua Beach

Pearl Harbor & Leeward O‘ahu

Way back in the day, this beach was a canoe-landing site for interisland travelers. In the late ‘60s it was used as the backdrop for the movie Hawaii. Today there is little here beyond a golden stretch of sand, shrubs and trees opposite the Makua Military Reservation. Look for dirt lanes off the main road. It's rarely crowded during the week; gates are often open.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Pearl Harbor & Leeward O‘ahu attractions

1. Makua Valley

0.95 MILES

The virescent Makua Valley is wide and grassy near the shore and narrows into a fan of sharply fluted mountains. It's used as a training area for the…

2. Kaneana Cave

0.99 MILES

The waves that created this giant stone amphitheater receded long ago. Now the highway passes right outside the cave, about 3 miles north of Makaha Beach…

3. Keawa'ula Beach

1.25 MILES

Some say this is the best sunset spot on the island. It certainly has the right west-facing orientation and a blissfully scenic mile-long sandy beach. You…

4. Kaʻena Point State Park

1.84 MILES

White-sand beaches and aqua-blue waters are the highlights of this somewhat-desolate state park that has a literal end-of-the-road feel. Car-parking areas…

5. Army Beach

3.52 MILES

Opposite the western end of Dillingham Airfield, this is the widest stretch of sand on the Mokuleʻia shore, although it’s not maintained and there are no…

6. Dillingham Airfield

3.73 MILES

Operated by the Hawaii Department of Transportation under a 25-year lease from the US Army, Dillingham Airfield is mainly used for general aviation,…

7. Makaha Beach Park


This beautifully arching beach invites you to spread out your towel and spend the day. Except for weekends and big surf days, you’ll likely have the place…

8. Mokuleʻia Beach Park

4.11 MILES

The beach itself is a nice sandy stretch, but the rocky seabed makes for poor swimming. When waters are calm and flat in summer, snorkelers swim out along…