Makena Beach

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Makena Beach State Park (Big Beach)

What: South Maui's largest beach
Where: South of Wailea, roughly a 50-minute drive from Lahaina
More Info: Open Daily from 6 a.m.-6 p.m.

Maui's southwestern shores are home to many extraordinary beaches, including Makena Beach, also known as "Big Beach" and considered one of the island's best.

This is one of the largest beaches on Maui, with 1.5 miles of golden sand stretching as wide as 100 feet in places. Visitors can swim or snorkel in the pristine water, picnic in the shade or simply sunbathe on the seemingly endless expanse of sand.

Big Beach is located south of Wailea near the Makena Beach and Golf Resort and provides a secluded alternative to more crowded beaches in Kaanapali and Lahaina. Nestled between two black lava outcroppings, Makena offers protection from the trade winds and provides great views of the islands of Molokini and Kahoolawe. Restrooms and picnic facilities are available, and a handful of food vendors operate out of trucks both inside and just outside the park.

Note: Always consult lifeguards before entering the water here. The shore break can be extremely dangerous, and the water is not suitable for children or inexperienced swimmers.