The 5 Best Beaches in O’ahu That Aren’t Resorts

Major resort beaches like Waikiki and Ko’olina get a lot of attention, especially among those new to O’ahu. But the reality of popular beaches is that… they’re popular and usually pretty crowded. Instead, take a look at some of O’ahu’s other beautiful beaches for a more laid-back and less tourist-packed beachside getaway.

Here are some of the best beaches in O’ahu… that aren’t resorts.

Lanikai Beach (Kailua)

best beaches in o'ahu lanikai beach parkLocated on the Windward Coast in the charming beach town of Kailua, Lanikai Beach is just as beautiful and much quieter than some of Honolulu’s bigger beaches. White-sand shore, turquoise waters, and two scenic islands off the coastline mark Lanikai as a magnificent shoreline escape. Plus, it’s protected by an offshore reef, making it ideal for swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, and windsurfing.

Kailua Beach Park (Kailua)

kailua beach park best beaches in o'ahuAlso in Kailua, Kailua Beach Park is a 30-acre park complete with amenities (like restrooms and food stands), volleyball courts and picnic areas, and tons of activities to enjoy. Nearby, you can find restaurants and sports equipment rentals for snorkeling, windsurfing, sailing, and kayaking. And the best part of all? It’s usually pretty quiet on the weekdays!

Sunset Beach (North Shore)

north shore beaches are great for surfing, making them some of the best beaches in oahuThe North Shore is renowned for its legendary winter waves that make it a popular destination for pro surfers. In the summer, the waves do calm down a bit to allow for swimming, but Sunset Beach is a beautiful destination any time of year.

Need a quieter North Shore beach? Head to the protected Mother’s Beach, which is popular with parents and kids.

Waimanalo Bay Beach Park (Windward Coast)

Waimanalo bay best beaches in oahuOne of O’ahu’s longest beaches, Waimanalo Bay stretches nearly 5 miles from Makapuu to Wailea Point. Less protected than the nearby Kailua beaches, Waimanalo is known for its pounding surf popular with boogie boarders. Sunbathing, fishing, and strolling are other favorite pastimes of this beautiful beach.

Hanauma Bay Nature Preserve

hanauma bay best beaches in o'ahuIt may not be one of O’ahu’s quieter beaches (and parking can be a little tricky at times), but it is one of the island’s top surfing spots. Formed from a collapsed volcano, Hanauma Bay offers protected and calm waters home to an amazingly diverse underwater wildlife preserve. Plus, there are beautiful hiking trails, as well as concessions, picnic tables, volleyball courts, and lifeguards.

Ready to Come Explore Life in O’ahu?

If you’re thinking of relocating to O’ahu, then it’s time to contact RE/MAX Honolulu. As your local real estate experts, we’re here to help you explore the area, discover its beautiful cities and unique neighborhoods, learn more about buying a home in Hawaii, and find the perfect house for sale.

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