Kahana Bay Beach Park

Kahana Bay Beach Park

Kahana Bay Beach Park

Kahana Bay Beach Park

Kahana Bay Beach Park

Kahana Bay Beach Park

Kahana Bay Beach Park

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beach swings with ko'olau mountains in background at Kahana Bay

Kahana Bay is one of the best-kept secrets on the windward (east) side of Oahu. The crescent-shaped bay is surrounded by the majestic Ko’olau Mountains – the perfect backdrop for a morning beach stroll. Kahana Bay is also a great spot for sunbathing on the warm sand or setting up a picnic under the shade of the towering ironwood trees.

Bay with ko'olau mountain range in background

Legendary Waves

There is an old Hawaiian legend that the Kahana Bay Chief named Palani once challenged the Goddess Hi’iaka – sister of Pele, the Goddess of fire – while surfing here. It did not end well for the Chief! Read about this story and more Kahana Bay legends here.

Kahana Bay Beach Park Highlights

  • Good for sunrise
  • Super scenic mountain views
  • Great picnic spot
  • Popular for camping
  • Boat ramp
  • Beautiful spot for a walk on the beach
  • Ancient fish pond
  • Adorable beach swings!
beach swings and surfers with ko'olau mountains in background at Kahana Bay

The set of swings at Kahana Bay Beach Park might just be my all-time favorite beach swings on the island. Here’s hoping they last for a long time!

When to go & What to do:

Swim and Snorkel in the Summer:

The runoff from the Kahana stream can make the bay’s water murky after rainy days, so it’s not the best place for swimming. However, if it hasn’t rained in a while, you’ll find clear water here that is great for snorkeling! Summer is the best time of year to visit this beach since there are significantly fewer rainy days during these months.

Ocean Safety Disclaimer: Beach and ocean conditions can be extremely dangerous and certain activities may require a certain level of ability and skill. Always take proper safety precautions when near bodies of water and pay special attention to weather forecasts, tides, currents, and safety signage. Visit hioceansafety.com to view current wind & surf reports and additional safety information. As the trusty old saying goes: When in doubt, don’t go out! 

Surf in the Winter

The bay can be unpredictable when it comes to surfing conditions, but the best time of year for surfing Kahana Bay is during winter. December is the prime month to find consistent clean waves (rideable swell with light / offshore winds). Breaking waves will often be smaller at less exposed spots. About half of the time the waves are considered too small for good surfing, but these conditions may still be okay for beginners or groms (young surfers). View the current surf report here.

surfers in the bay with ko'olau mountains in the back
Weekday Solitude vs. Weekend Campsites

You’ll find peace and quiet here on weekdays, so it is a great spot for some solitude. Weekends can get busy since many families love to camp here! If you’re interested in camping here, you’ll need to obtain a permit.

beach swings with ko'olau mountains in background at Kahana Bay

You really can’t beat this Mountain View!

Perfect for a long walk on the beach 

The scenery is beautiful here due to the Ko’olau Mountains that surround the bay. It is a great spot for a beach stroll any time of the day. 


Due to the windward positioning and shape of Kahana Bay, a lot of trash and plastic washes into the bay and onto the shore. Even though there are frequent beach clean-ups that take place here, it doesn’t stop the endless cycle of litter washing up onto the sand. I’ve seen many people pick up trash during their morning walks and starting making it part of my routine when I was in the area. Even just 10-15 minutes can make a big impact!

Bench made from wood fastened between two ironwood trees

The cutest little bench made out of wood between two trees. Don’t forget your camera!

More Beach Details

There is no lifeguard present at this beach.


Do not leave any valuables in your car. Unfortunately, break-ins are very common on Oahu, so make sure to carry anything of value with you or leave it behind in your hotel/home/rental.



All of Hawaii’s beaches are free and open to the public. 

  • Restrooms at the north end of the beach
  • Outdoor showers
  • Picnic tables
  • Drinking water

Kahana Bay Beach Park is located in the northeast region of Oahu. It is practically on the border of where the windward region ends and North Shore begins. It typically takes about an hour car ride to get here from Waikiki. 


52-222 Kamehameha Hwy, Hauula, HI 96717


There is parking available in a dirt lot on the makai (ocean) side of the road, steps away from the beach. If the lot is full, people will park alongside the road or in the second lot just north of the dirt one (where the boat ramp is located). There are tons of potholes and uneven surfaces in this second lot, so use caution driving! Surfers will park here and enter or exit the water from the boat ramp.

See Kahana Bay from Above

You can see fantastic views of Kahana Bay from the top of a nearby hike called Crouching Lion. This intermediate trail offers a short but challenging incline. Read more about the 30-minute hike here.

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About Laur

Aloha, I’m Lauren! One of my favorite things to do is explore the Hawaiian island of Oahu and nothing makes me happier than sharing what I’ve learned over the past 7 years with those planning their own adventures. I started Lauraloha Travel to help you enjoy every minute of your experience from planning all the way to paradise. Mahalo for exploring with me!

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