Although not as well known as many of the beaches in South Maui, West Maui does indeed have a few gems of its own. Here are the best beaches in West Maui.
If you’re searching for blue tepid waters where you can wade unafraid of being slapped around by fierce waves, then check out Kapalua Beach. The bay here is protected, so swimming is excellent. The water can be a bit cloudy, so I don’t recommend snorkeling. If you’re going swimming, be sure to wear your reef shoes. Kapalua Beach is also a terrific place to kick back and enjoy the picturesque setting.
Another West Maui beach where the water is magnificent is Kahekili Beach Park. The ocean here has a superb sandy bottom, so there’s no need for reef shoes. Leave them at your home or hotel and bring your snorkel gear. This is also a popular place for scuba divers, and some companies hold introductory shore dives here. If you’re traveling here from another part of the island, you may wish to make use of this park’s terrific facilities: covered tables, showers, and plenty of parking.
Much of the action in West Maui can be found in front of the Ka’anapali resorts on Ka’anapali Beach. (Are all these Hawaiian names starting to sound the same?) This is a fabulous place to be while the sun sets. Whether you’re walking along the beach or dining at one of the happening beachside restaurants, you’ll experience a sight you’ll take with you forever. There’s little more spectacular than a genuine Maui sunset.
A large black lava rock, called Black Rock, separates the two halves of Ka’anapali Beach. This is one magnificent spot to go snorkeling. Begin at the Sheraton side and swim around the black lava rock. You’ll see plenty of beautiful fish and living coral. The beach itself is often busy, but not busy enough that it should deter you from visiting.
For the best views of the island of Molokai, spend the morning at Slaughterhouse Beach. Sure, it sounds like the title of a bad horror movie, but it’s actually a picture postcard stretch of sand. Slaughterhouse Beach, which gets its name from a slaughterhouse that is long-gone, is located north of the 32 mile marker on Highway 30. Take the concrete stairway located about a hundred feet below the road.
If you’re staying right in West Maui, you’ll probably have time to check out other West Maui beaches, including Napili Beach, Oneloa Beach (a gem that is rarely crowded), and D. T. Fleming Beach Park. Enjoy your stay on Maui, and don’t forget to check out my article on the Best Beaches in South Maui, as well as my piece on the upcoming Hawaii Superferry. Aloha!