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Ways to Experience Waimanalo Beach
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Reviewed 30 October 2009

We went to Waimanalo beach last Monday afternoon and parked at one end of Waimanalo Beach Park. There were only two other cars in the parking area and we knew that we would have a quiet and relaxing stay.

We placed our beach mat under the trees that provided shade and had a picnic. There were at most only eight people in that stretch of beach plus a lifeguard. What a huge contrast from the crowded beaches of Waikiki.

The blue/green sea and powdery sand were so inviting but there were warning signs posted on the beach about the presence of portuguese man o'war. We just waded a few meters into the sea to be safe. The rest of the time we just spent strolling on the beach or lying on the mat enjoying the breeze. It was the most relaxing time we spent during our trip to Hawaii.

If needed, there is a public restroom near the parking grounds plus picnic tables scattered around the place.

4  Thank Bruce W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 May 2009

I was just in Hawaii last week, and we took our 18 month old to this beach. it was hist first trip to any beach, and he loved it!! my husband and i were engaged on this beach 5 years ago. it is absolutely beautiful! soft white sand, gorgeous turquoise water. definitely check it out if you're on Oahu.

ive seen other reviewers say its empty on weekdays, but we went on a Wednesday and there were quite a few people there. it was still amazing though!

4  Thank zacksmom07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 June 2008

Lovely colors, beautiful scenery, fine sand and lifeguard on duty until 5PM; great place for a lazy afternoon (or two or three...)

3  Thank adi07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 July 2007

Hawaii reeks of wonderful beaches and we've been to many and ejoyed them all. But, Waimanalo has one of the best as far as the most beautiful 'azure' aqua colored water to behold. Waimanalo Beach, is one of the longest white sand beaches on Oahu. The entire beach is over three miles long, but the portion of it fronting the park is approximately three-quarters of a mile long. The beach is wide, and the ocean bottom slopes gently to overhead depths across a series of shallow sandbars. Small, one-to two-foot high trade wind-generated surf breaks on the sandbars all year round. The best part we love is finding lots of shade on a very hot day, where you can sit, sleep or read a book at your leisure. The trees are awesome and of course, the place is not as crowded as other beaches.

8  Thank grammysyl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 May 2007

My wife and I have enjoyed Waimanalo Beach many times over the years and while we love it and have made many friends there, we recognize that Waimanalo isn't for everyone.

Before reading on, consider opening the attached map.

Access to the beach is through one of two parks (there's one on each end of the public beach) or by parking on Laumilo Street, which is the street closest and parallel to the ocean. From Laumilo you'll walk approximately 100 feet to the beach on a public access path. If you want to park on Laumilo (read on before deciding), go to the north end (Aloiloi and Laumilo) where there is street-side space for numerous cars. Parking near one of the other beach access paths along Laumilo is not recommended, mostly because ...

Unfortunately, rental cars break-ins are fairly common at both parks and even more so on Laumilo. We seen too many sad visitors and broken windows so, do not under any circumstances leave valuables in your car. If you put your wallet, purse or other valuables in the trunk after parking, keep in mind that thieves are known to watch cars as they arrive. Same goes for removing and stashing your jewelry once parked.

Avoid swimming on days when the tradewinds are strong. The trades blow in floating Portuguese man o' war jellyfish and wow oh wow their sting hurts! Watch the evening weather on TV as they almost always include tradewinds in the forecast. Keep in mind, too, that it often rains on the windward side of the island (that's where Waimanalo is) when there are clear skies in Waikiki. (Trivia: Waikiki also gets jellyfish but they're box jellyfish that primarily come and go with lunar cycles.)

Okay, now that we have all that negative stuff out of the way, here's how you can enjoy a perfect day on Waimanalo Beach.

Consider taking a bus. Buses are clean and generally prompt and the ride from Honolulu to Waimanalo is stunning! Hint: If you're coming from Honolulu, for the best view sit on the right side of the bus going and left side coming back. And have your camera ready! Routes and more info are here: http://www.thebus.org

The bus will drop you off on the main road that runs through Waimanalo. Get off the bus at the stop nearest McDonald's (Aloiloi and Kalanianaole). If you go past McD's, you've gone past easy beach access. From McDonald's you'll have a 3 block walk down Aloiloi to the beach. Pack lightly and keep in mind there are fresh water drinking fountains and restrooms at both parks. (Did you know Waimanalo means "potable water"?)

Once in town or on the beach, be sincere, humble and friendly with the locals. A courteous "hello" or "aloha" along with a gentle smile will go a long way. We've started many friendships doing just that.

If you'd prefer to stay with your rental car and assuming you don't have a friend's house in Nalo to park at, or if you prefer a bit more polished experience, drive a few miles past Waimanalo to Kailua Beach. Parking is much more secure there and the locals are accustomed to -- and warmly welcome -- tourists.

Waimanalo is a 5 star beach. Kailua is a 4.5 (only because there are more people there than Nalo but nothing at all like the crowds at Waikiki). Kailua will be the beach of your dreams if you'd enjoy renting a kayak, snorkeling, windsurfing or people watching. You'll also find all the comforts of home in Kailua such as Starbucks, Coldstone Creamery, book stores, and juicy hamburgers.

31  Thank Windward_Wanderer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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