White sand, blue water, and green sea turtles, oh my! Maui’s Ho’okipa Beach Park offers a rainbow of beauty all year long. Ho’okipa is derived from the Hawaiian word for “welcoming comfort”, and the beach was named by parks director Alice Johnson in the 1930s. She even wrote a popular song about this spot! Keep reading to find out what makes Ho’okipa so unique. Then, access our free Maui Travel Guide to explore the rest of the island!
What You Need to Know About Ho’okipa Beach
Ho’okipa is about 30 minutes from our inn. It’s located on the north shore of Maui, just past mile marker #9 on the Road to Hana. Once you pull into the parking lot, you’ll find picnic tables, observation decks, and endless opportunities for outdoor recreation.
Like many Maui beaches, Ho’okipa is a great place to swim, snorkel, and lay in the sun. There’s nothing better than sitting under the shade of a Hau tree and enjoying the sea spray that makes your skin tingle! However, what makes Ho’okipa extra special is the Hawaiian Green sea turtles that frequent this area. The turtles, also known as honu, can be seen bobbing along an exposed coral reef in the water. They also relax on the sand, but you may not realize it because they look like scattered boulders!
The best time of day to view the sea turtles is in the evening. Like humans, many honu stroll onto the shore to rest and admire the beautiful Hawaiian sunset. Keep in mind that all sea turtles are protected by federal and state law — it’s important to be respectful of the animals and keep your distance.
Did you know that Ho’okipa Beach is a world-renowned windsurfing destination? This hotspot boasts some of the best waves on the island’s coastline. Surfers have flocked to this beach since the 1930s, and the Aloha Classic and Red Bull professional surfing competitions have taken place here. Feel free to sit back and watch as the surfers tackle the waves!
Note: We recommend that only experienced surfers attempt this beach, as sudden afternoon winds, strong rip currents, and shallow reef can be challenging and dangerous for beginners. Be sure to always look over Hawaii’s ocean safety tips before heading out.
A day at Ho’okipa isn’t complete without a trip to Mama’s Fish House. This family-owned eatery overlooks the beach and sends its fisherman out on small boats each day. Upon return, the chefs process and serve the wild-caught fish within 24 hours. Try decadent options like Tristan Island lobster tails, seared Ahi tuna, and Mama’s famous stuffed Mahi-Mahi. You’ll know you’re eating the freshest seafood money can buy.
Wondering how the weather is today at Ho’okipa Beach? Check out Mama’s Beach Cam and see for yourself!
Come Home to The Old Wailuku Inn
After a few hours in the sand, take the easy drive back to our B&B! Our innkeepers know hospitality and provide each guest with a comfortable, relaxing, and memorable stay. You can spend the rest of your evening in our beautiful garden, then enjoy a peaceful night’s sleep in one of our guest rooms. In the morning, join us for a delicious, gourmet breakfast. We can’t wait to hear about your day at the beach!