Big Beach (Oneloa/Makena Beach) At Makena State Park

4.5 stars from 16 reviews
Address 6600 Makena Rd, Makena, HI 96753
Long and wide beach. Excellent views, a great place to hang out but not for little kids.

Features
• Facilities: Bathrooms • Facilities: Lifeguard
• Facilities: Showers • Sand Type: Regular
• Parking: Good / Plenty • Good For: Sunsets

Matt Anderson's Take
Big Beach is just that, big. It's quite long and very wide with tons of sand so there is plenty of room to handle a lot of people. That's a good thing because on busy days, like weekends and holidays, it does get packed down here.


There are several places to park along the entire stretch of beach and you can't miss the lots here so turn in, park, and then walk a bit to the sand. There is some shade near the tree line but otherwise it's going to be sunny and sandy everywhere. Keep that in mind because it gets very hot out here so make sure you use plenty of sunscreen to Protect Yourself From Sunburn & Skin Cancer.


You'll get some great views of Molokini Crater and just great overall ocean views. This is an excellent place to get some photos in since the water is nice and blue here.


As for swimming, it can be a good for that if the ocean is very calm but you have to watch for strong currents, strong waves that tend to pull you into the water, and the waves breaking near the shore. It's easy to get knocked down, pulled in, and turned around here. There are lifeguards but if you don't know what you are doing just stay out or talk with a lifeguard for the safest spots to go in.


On that note, it's not a great beach for little kids because of the strong currents and waves. If you hike over the rock stairs at the far north end you'll be at Little Beach (Pu'u Ola'i Nude Beach) and see things that cannot be unseen.


There are good facilities here and you will likely even find food trucks in the parking lots on busy days.
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Matt Anderson
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Lisa F
Joined: Jan 2017
Reviews: 48
Likes Received: 13
One of my most favorite beaches in the world. This long beach always seems different with each visit. Lots of locals here bodysurfing. Gorgeous beach with a little tan and white swivel going on. The waves can be rough at times, and in some places. This is also the way to access little beach at the far end and over a little bit of a difficult passway. Parking is pretty easy and there are many different spots to access this beach. We just love it! If you are hungry there are food trucks in the parking lots and along the road where you may need to park. Lifeguard stations are here and it is also a good place to see turtles swimming along and especially by the rockier areas. Sunset is gorgeous here. We visit every time we come to Maui!
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Matt A
Joined: Feb 2013
Reviews: 790
Likes Received: 106
The waves can get rough here at times but it's still a place that's worth seeing. It's just such an amazing backdrop for some photos and a really fun place to play in the water if the ocean isn't too crazy. When you picture a Hawaiian beach, this is what you're imagining.
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Debbie L
Joined: Sep 2016
Reviews: 7
Likes Received: 0
A beautiful beach to go to if you enjoy miles of white sand and crystal clear blue waters. It is absolutely stunning. However, the waves here to get a bit rough. Great for boogie boarding and surfing, but not where you would want to go if you plan on snorkeling. Well worth going to just to see the beauty of it.
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Sonja P
Joined: Jul 2016
Reviews: 4
Likes Received: 0
Our favorite beach to visit while in Maui!!! It's a good walk in from the parking lot (but a stop at the Taco truck is a definite) so be sure to wear your flip flops to protect your feet! A large sand beach so plenty of room to spread out and the water can be dangerous at times.
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Tina M
Joined: Jun 2016
Reviews: 4
Likes Received: 0
A full day at Big Beach is a must when in Maui. We always stay in Kahana which means it's a good 45 minute drive away but at least one day is always reserved for Big Beach. A disposable grill for beach burgers, a packed cooler, and you're set for a beautiful day. Appropriately nicknamed, you'll find miles of golden sand and enough room to assure that you never feel crowded. Two factors to consider. 1: There is no shelter from the sun so bring some if this is important to you. 2: Check water conditions. It can get rough here. Not a good kid-spot as others have stated.
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brandy s
Joined: May 2016
Reviews: 47
Likes Received: 0
One of the largest sandy beaches on Maui, many visitors come here. Surf here is big and can be dangerous so swim with caution. Dangerous shore break is great for boogie boarding. It also shares a parking area with the clothing optional Little Beach next door which attracts an eclectic crowd!
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Al T
Joined: May 2016
Reviews: 4
Likes Received: 0
One of Hawaii's finest beaches and one of its most dangerous. I've been doing this beach for 30 plus years...when it was still undeveloped. No road. No parking lot. Only a 4 wheel trail...where we'd drive up to the beach, camp and have bonfires...awwww the days!

Oh well.

I've seen some of the most intense and dangerous beach breaks on all the islands. In short, never turn your back on the ocean. Learn how to dive under a wave cuz you won't outrun it by the time you realize it's on you. I've been pounded down by Makena's beach breaks...and ridden hundreds of short, but awesome waves. You've heard of rug burns? How about sand burns?

AND THE SAND CAN BURN YOUR FEET!! I had to make a 911 call once for a lady (tourist) that burned her feet bad enough to third-degree burns and couldn't walk. It was nasty.

Ok. I've stated my Makena "be careful" stand. Now for its "you've got to go there" rave.

It's gorgeous!!!!! One of my all time fav beaches throughout all the islands...and I think I've done them all.

Some of the most amazing turquoise blue waters anywhere. The sand is not super fine grain like at Charley Young beach or Polo beach, it's cool looking sand up close.

Watching the local kids (with no fear) catch these shore breaks is very entertaining...as is watching tourists getting pounded...in a scary way. Or the big muscle dudes thinking they can withstand being hit by a wave only to be slammed. I've seen many men and women come out of the surf shorts pulled down and tops not properly situated.

It had always seemed hotter here than any other beach. Bring your umbrella. No drinking water or showers. Lifeguards on site..that says something. PortaPotty onsite.

All said, love this beach!!!!!!

And bring your camera! Walk to the far north end of the beach, climb over the rocks (you'll see a trail.. or see someone popping out), and you'll discover Little Beach. Clothing optional for sure. Great surfing can be found here. Leave your camera...locals don't appreciate their pics taken. Duh. Don't forget sunscreen!!! ;)

I love this beach and southern part of Maui...so much so, my son's middle name is Makena (Hawaiian for abundant) True!
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Stephanie--2094
Joined: May 2016
Reviews: 67
Likes Received: 2
What an awesome beach. Long, sandy and perfectly blue water. Not really a place to snorkel, the water was too rough the day we went for that. The surf was actually quite big, and although we went on the one rainy day makena gets a year, I still enjoyed sitting and watching the waves and just listening to the ocean. Sad we didn't get to swim, but I didn't want to get sucked out and have a lifeguard come rescue me. What a story for my vacation, right! I think this is normally a pretty calm beach, we were told by everyone we talked to, to get to this beach before we left. I'm glad we did, I just wish the weather would have cooperated a little better.
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Vanessa D
Joined: Apr 2016
Reviews: 2
Likes Received: 0
We've been to Maui in march 2015, this is the only beach we went back to again and again, the water is perfect, the waves are just enough to have fun swimming in them. This is my favorite beach !!
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chantel
Joined: Mar 2016
Reviews: 426
Likes Received: 12
We took the kids to this beach and they loved it. Beautiful sand clear water and not rough at all to swim in was nice and quiet. We had a great day! Highly recommend this beach it's just beautiful and relaxing. Go check it out. Big beach @ Makena state park.
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