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 to yourself. Snorkeling is good during the calmer summer months. There are showers and restrooms, and lifeguards on duty daily. Winter brings big swells that preclude swimming but are beautiful to photograph – or surf.
In December 1969, legendary surfer Greg Noll rode what was thought to be the biggest wave in surfing history (to that point) at Makaha. Speculation still rages as to exactly how big the monster wave was, but it is commonly accepted that it was at least a 30ft face – a mountain of water for the era. The long point break at Makaha still produces waves that inspire big-wave surfers.