Archive for the ‘Beaches’ Category

A’Bay Repair Work at Waikoloa Beach Resort

August 7th, 2011

On March 11, 2011 a 9.0 earthquake off the coast of Japan created a tsunami that made its way to the Big Island of Hawaii. This incident damaged parts of the Big Island including A’naehoomalu Bay, A’Bay. This is a stretch of beach directly fronting the Kolea Resort and the Waikoloa Beach Marriott. The damaged area is directly in front of the Marriott. The missing section separated the ocean from the Ku’ualii Fish Ponds, a place of great historical significance to the Hawaiian people.

The concern is that the water is pushing sand into the fish pond, which could cause a loss in sand volume and collapse permanently, making future restoration impossible. This would make a temporary coastline change into something long term.

Sea Engineering, Inc received the proper permits and a temporary solution was created. On July 28th, bulldozers were brought in to repair the area with sand-filled geo-textile tubes. These devices will not allow the force of the tides and ocean currents to continue to dismantle the beach area. The project creating this temporary barrier was completed as of August 3rd, 2011.

The crews worked quickly to ensure residents and visitors were impacted as little as possible knowing this was an extremely important project, not only securing the beach area but the historical fish ponds behind it.

The final stage of the permanent repairs are currently being discussed and will completed at some point in the future. As part of the permanent repairs, the addition of Makahas, or gates is being explored. This will give the fish ponds greater circulation to ensure the longevity of this historical landmark.

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Kua Bay

July 19th, 2010

Kua Bay is becoming one of the more popular beaches on the island. Just recently the road was paved allowing easy access from the highway. At Kua Bay you will find a large white sand beach with very few rocks around the swimming areas. If you go to the left or the right of the main swimming area there are some amazing areas for snorkeling. During the summer months there are typically smaller waves making it great for young children. In the winter months the waves are a bit larger, which makes for some great boogie boarding. There is limited parking so you will often find yourself parking along the side of the road. The facilities include restrooms along with picnic tables under trees overlooking the bay area.

Kua Bay

Kua Bay

Snorkeling at Kua Bay

Snorkeling at Kua Bay

Picnic Area at Kua Bay

Picnic Area at Kua Bay

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Mahaiula Bay

July 2nd, 2010

Mahaiula Bay offers a great supplement to visitors of Kekaha Kai State Park. To get to Mahaiula Bay you park at Kekaha Kai State Park and walk about 10 minutes north to this beautiful white sand beach. The beach spans about ¼ mile long and although there are some rocks in the water, they are not too intrusive. This beach offers great swimming and snorkeling. After you are done swimming you can go hike behind the beach where there is an old vacant house and lots of wildlife. There are two porta potties here for your use. The other restrooms are at Kekaha Kai State Park.

Mahaiula Bay

Mahaiula Bay

Family of Goats at Mahaiula Bay

Family of Goats at Mahaiula Bay


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Mahaiula Bay is just a short hike north of the Kekaha Kai State Park public parking.

Kekaha Kai State Park

July 2nd, 2010

Kekaha Kai State Park offers a nice setting for people that like to enjoy the outdoors. The main entrance to the state park is about 2 miles off of Highway 19 along an unpaved road. Once you arrive at the state park there is limited parking so you may have to park in some of the areas along the road further from the water. There are restrooms for your use at the parking lot. Once you head to the beach you will find beautiful white sand and the beautiful blue water Hawaii is known for. The water here is filled with rocks so it is not the greatest area to swim. Mahaiula Bay and Makalawena Beach are also part of Kekaha Kai State Park and offering better areas for swimming. Along the beach you will find picnic tables along with grills nestled under trees. We also ran into a large family of goats, which seemed to be regulars at this beach. If you want to see this area, but want a better beach experience you can hike north to the beach at Mahaiula Bay and if you go even further north you will find a beautiful beach called Makalawena Beach.

Picnic Tables at Kekaha Kai State Park

Picnic Tables at Kekaha Kai State Park

BBQ Pit and Wildlife at Kekaha Kai State Park

BBQ Pit and Wildlife at Kekaha Kai State Park


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Mau’u Mae Beach

June 29th, 2010

Mau’u Mae Beach, pronounced Mow my, is one of my favorite beaches on the island. You can get to the beach two ways. The first is to park at Spencer Beach State Park and hike north about ¼ mile up the coastline along a trail until you reach the beach. The second is to go through Mauna Kea Resort and park at the beach parking. They limit the number of permits they give out to park there so you can not always use this option. Their permit will have directions to the parking area. They give out permits typically from sunrise to sunset. Once you reach the beach you will find beautiful white sand and that extends far out into the water. This is least rocky beach I am aware of on the Big Island of Hawaii. The surf is typically minimal so it is great for children and boogie boarding. There are rocky areas along both sides of the beach that make for great snorkeling. There is minimal shade so you will want to take a beach umbrella.

Mauu Mae Beach

Mauu Mae Beach

Path to Mauu Mae from Spencer Beach

Path to Mauu Mae from Spencer Beach

Path to Mauu Mae from Publick Parking at Mauna Kea Beach

Path to Mauu Mae from Publick Parking at Mauna Kea Beach


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Directions to Spencer Beach State Park. Mauu Mae is a hike south along the costline from Spencer Beach State Park.

Makalawena Beach

June 28th, 2010

This long white sand beach offers amazing views out over the Pacific and is large enough that you feel as though you have the entire beach to yourself. To get to Makalawena Beach you have to park at Kekaha Kai State Park and hike about 30 minutes north partially along a lava rock path and partially along sand. Due to this, once you get to the beach there are few people there. The water is great for snorkeling and swimming. There are a few rocks, which are not sharp, scattered around throughout the water. There is surf there throughout the year, but it typically is not very rough. The surf typically is just large enough to bodyboard. Just remember that it is a pretty long hike out so make sure to just take what is necessary. If you walk north to the end of the beach you will see Opaeula Pond on the right. There are typically several different types of fish and sea life in there. Also to the left of this area is a great place in the ocean for young children if they made it this far. There is a wave break of large lava rocks about 20 feet out into the ocean so it makes for a very calm , shallow area for children to enjoy. Also the nearest restroom is at Kekaha Kai State Park. This beach ends the nice beaches in the Kekaka Kai State Park. There are some other areas just further north, which you can camp at, but the beaches are not that great.

Note: You can get to Makalawena Beach by vehicle from the north, but I do not recommend it. You would have to have a 4WD vehicle and it still is pretty tough from there.

Makalawena Beach

Makalawena Beach

Makalawena Beach

Makalawena Beach


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Marker B is the parking for Kekaha Kai State Park. To get to Makalawena Beach you will need to walk north. Makalawena Beach is the beach located on Puu Alii Bay.