Where to Camp in the Aloha State
Planning a Hawaii vacation? Why not try some beach camping and experience Hawaii the way it was meant to be experienced?
Hawaii is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, and it’s not hard to see why. The warm weather and beautiful Pacific Ocean, not to mention the great food, fun activities and friendly people, make it a great place to visit any time of year.
Many people visiting Hawaii choose to stay in one of the many beautiful hotels or exclusive resorts, but we think they’re missing out. If you’d prefer to experience Hawaii the more natural way, read on for our top 10 picks for camping in Hawaii.
Hōlua, the Wilderness campsite reached by the shortest hike, lies at 6,940 feet (2,115m) in the shrubland near Koʻolau Gap. Hōlua is 3.7 miles (6km) down the Halemauʻu Trail or 7.4 miles (12km) from the Sliding Sand Trailhead. Visitors staying at Hōlua can enjoy day hikes into the central Wilderness Area. The landscape around Hōlua supports a native shrubland which colonizes the lava flows. Learn more.
The Napali Coast is a very special place. The pali, or cliffs, provide a rugged grandeur of deep, narrow valleys ending abruptly at the sea. Waterfalls and swift flowing streams continue to cut these narrow valleys while the sea carves cliffs at their mouths. Extensive stone walled terraces can still be found on the valley bottoms where Hawaiians once lived and cultivated taro. Learn more.
Keaiwa Heiau State Recreation Area is a 384-acre park located approximately 12 miles from Waikiki. Keaïwa Heiau is located at the park entry. Continue along the paved park road to the campgrounds, picnic areas, and trailhead for the ‘Aiea Loop Trail. Learn more.
Malaekahana Beach Campground on Oahu’s North Shore offers some of the best camping accommodations, amenities and activities in Hawaii! Whether you like to sleep under the stars in your tent or in a plantation hut or suite for style and comfort, Malaekahana Beach Campground offers something for everyone. With a selection of up to 74 campsites planned offering a wide selection of spacious sites and open areas with picnic tables, water spouts and fire pits, your back to nature event is just a reservation away. Learn more.
Sand Island State Recreation Area offers weekends-only shoreline camping within a heavily industrialized area very close to the urban core of Honolulu and the flight path of the Honolulu International Airport. This park is also adjacent to the Sand Island Off Highway Vehicle (OHV) day use riding area, which contains tracks and trails for motorized OHV’s and non-motorized BMX bikes. Learn more.
A beautiful beach that features good surfing and very good fishing, camping at Kalaeloa Beach Park can seem quiet and very remote. A printed permit is required to camp in this park. Learn more.
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Strolling or driving through these lush 400 acres in windward Oahu, you will truly agree that Ho`omaluhia is rightfully named “a peaceful refuge.” Opened in 1982, this garden in Kaneohe features plantings from major tropical regions around the world grouped geographically. Learn more.
Landscaped beach park with swimming during calm seas, bodysurfing during periods of shore breaks, sunbathing and other beach-related activities, picnicking and shelter lodging opportunities. Learn more.
This popular east side park is a great swimming beach protected by an offshore reef and a great sunbathing beach with soft, white sand. The shallow water and consistent shorebreak is often utilized by beginner surfers and body boarders. Bellows Field Beach Park usually provides calm water conditions unless the ocean waves are large. This is a great beach for a long walk along beautiful Waimanalo Bay or just relaxing on the white sand beach, though it is not such a great beach for snorkeling. Ironwood trees along the beach provide plenty of shady areas. Bellows Field Beach Park is just one of three prominent beaches on the expansive Waimanalo Bay. Learn more.
Braving a long and rutted dirt road rewards the traveler with a stunning beach park. Picnicking and tent camping on wild coastline with large sand beach backed by dunes. Scenic setting, colorful sunsets and good views of the high sea cliffs of Nāpali Coast. Swimming in summer during calm conditions; shore fishing. Learn more.
What’s your favorite place to visit in Hawaii? Let us know in the comments!
And be sure to check out the rest of our Best Campgrounds in the US series.