Hilo, Hawaii is known for its stunning beaches that offer something for everyone. Whether you're looking for a family-friendly spot to build sandcastles, crystal clear waters for snorkeling, or simply a picturesque spot to relax and soak up the sun, Hilo has it all. In this article, we'll take a closer look at the best beaches in Hilo, highlighting their unique features and what makes them stand out.

Most Popular Beaches in Hilo

When it comes to the most popular beaches in Hilo, a few names come to mind. One of these is Richardson Beach Park, a local favorite for its picturesque black sand and calm swimming conditions. With its clear waters and abundant marine life, it's the perfect spot for snorkelers and beginner divers.

Another popular beach is Carlsmith Beach Park, also known as Four Mile Beach. This beach is famous for its natural seawalls, which create calm and shallow pools. It's an ideal spot for families with young children, as they can play in the water without worrying about strong currents.

For those seeking a beach with a bit of history, Onekahakaha Beach Park is the place to go. This beach is the largest and most diverse in Hilo, with its unique black sand and natural tide pools. It's also known for its ancient Hawaiian fishpond, which adds to the cultural significance of the area.

As you explore Richardson Beach Park, you may encounter honu, the Hawaiian green sea turtles, basking in the sun on the black sand. These gentle creatures are a protected species, so it's important to admire them from a respectful distance. The park's lush greenery provides a serene backdrop for picnics and leisurely walks along the shore.

Carlsmith Beach Park, with its tranquil pools formed by lava rocks, offers a unique swimming experience. The calm waters are perfect for floating and observing the colorful fish that inhabit the pools. This beach is also a great spot for tidepooling, where you can discover small marine creatures in their natural habitat.

Beaches With the Clearest Water in Hilo

If crystal clear waters are what you're after, Hilo has a couple of options for you. One of the top choices is Leleiwi Beach Park, known for its stunning turquoise waters that are perfect for swimming and snorkeling. There's also a large grassy area with picnic tables, making it an excellent spot for a beachside picnic.

Anther beach known for its clear waters is Honoli'i Beach Park. This beach offers both sandy and rocky areas, creating a perfect blend of scenery. The waters here are relatively calm, making it a great place for swimming and boogie boarding. It's also a popular spot for local surfers, so you might even catch some impressive waves!

When visiting Leleiwi Beach Park, keep an eye out for the unique marine life that inhabits the clear waters. Snorkelers often spot colorful fish, sea turtles, and even the occasional manta ray gliding gracefully beneath the surface. The beach is also a great place for birdwatching, with seabirds soaring overhead and native shorebirds foraging along the shoreline.

Meanwhile, Honoli'i Beach Park not only boasts clear waters but also stunning views of the surrounding cliffs and lush greenery. The mix of sandy and rocky shores provides opportunities for beachcombing and exploring tide pools teeming with small marine creatures. As the sun sets behind the horizon, the beach transforms into a peaceful haven, perfect for a leisurely evening stroll along the water's edge.

Best Family Beaches in Hilo

When it comes to finding a family-friendly beach in Hilo, look no further than Kealoha Beach Park. This beach is well-sheltered by palm trees and provides gentle waves, making it an ideal spot for young children to enjoy the water. With picnic tables, showers, and restrooms available, it's a convenient and family-oriented destination.

Kealoha Beach Park is not just a great spot for swimming and picnicking; it also offers fantastic opportunities for snorkeling. The calm waters near the shore are teeming with colorful fish and other marine life, making it a perfect place for families to explore the underwater world together. Don't forget to bring your snorkeling gear and sunscreen for a day of underwater adventures!

Another fantastic option for families is Carlsmith Beach Park, which we mentioned earlier for its natural seawalls. These seawalls create calm and shallow pools, perfect for little ones to splash around in. The beach also has a lifeguard on duty, providing peace of mind for parents.

Carlsmith Beach Park is not only known for its family-friendly atmosphere but also for its abundant sea turtle population. Visitors often have the chance to see these magnificent creatures basking in the sun on the beach or swimming gracefully in the clear waters. Remember to maintain a respectful distance and never touch or disturb the turtles, as they are protected by law. Witnessing these gentle giants in their natural habitat is a memorable experience for the whole family.

Prettiest Beaches in Hilo

If you're searching for the most breathtakingly beautiful beaches in Hilo, you won't be disappointed. One of the top contenders is Coconut Island, also known as Moku Ola. This small offshore island is accessible by a footbridge and offers stunning views of Hilo Bay. The beach surrounding the island is perfect for sunbathing, beachcombing, and enjoying the mesmerizing scenery.

Coconut Island, or Moku Ola, holds cultural significance for the local community as a place of healing and rejuvenation. In ancient Hawaiian tradition, it was believed that swimming around the island could cure illness and bring good fortune. The island is also home to a variety of seabirds and marine life, making it a popular spot for birdwatching and snorkeling.

Another contender for the prettiest beach is Honoli'i Beach Park. With its combination of sandy and rocky areas and lush green landscape, it's a true tropical paradise. The powerful waves crashing against the rocks create a mesmerizing sight that is sure to leave you in awe.

Honoli'i Beach Park is not only a picturesque beach but also a favorite spot for local surfers. The consistent waves and rocky shoreline provide ideal conditions for surfing, attracting both beginners and experienced surfers alike. The park is surrounded by lush vegetation, including ironwood trees and coconut palms, adding to its natural beauty and charm.

When to Visit Beaches in Hilo

When planning your beach getaway to Hilo, timing is everything. The best time to visit the beaches in Hilo is during the summer months from June to August. During this time, you can expect warm temperatures, calm waters, and plenty of sunshine. It's the perfect time for swimming, snorkeling, and all-around beach fun.

However, if you're looking to avoid the crowds and have more privacy on the beach, consider visiting during the spring or fall months. The weather is still pleasant, and you'll have more space to spread out and enjoy the beach without feeling crowded.

Visiting Hilo's beaches in the summer also allows you to witness the annual migration of humpback whales. These majestic creatures travel from Alaska to Hawaii to breed and give birth in the warm waters of the Pacific. Catching a glimpse of these whales breaching and playing in the ocean is a truly unforgettable experience.

For those interested in marine life, visiting Hilo's beaches during low tide can reveal a hidden world of tide pools teeming with colorful sea creatures. Exploring these tide pools is a great way to learn about the diverse marine ecosystem of Hawaii and observe creatures like sea stars, crabs, and small fish up close.

Least Crowded Beaches in Hilo

If you're someone who prefers a quieter and more secluded beach experience, Hilo has a few hidden gems for you to discover. One of these is Honoli'i Beach Park, which we've mentioned before for its clear water and stunning scenery. Despite its beauty, this beach tends to be less crowded than some of the more popular spots.

Another beach worth exploring is Carlsmith Beach Park. This beach is usually less crowded during weekdays and early mornings. If you're an early bird, you can have the whole beach to yourself and enjoy the serene beauty of the surroundings without any distractions.

For those seeking even more seclusion, Richardson's Ocean Park is a fantastic option. Tucked away from the main tourist areas, this beach offers a peaceful retreat where you can unwind and connect with nature. The calm waters are perfect for swimming, snorkeling, or simply relaxing on the shore.

If you're up for a short hike, Ha'ena Beach is another hidden gem worth the effort. This secluded beach is surrounded by lush greenery and offers a sense of tranquility that is hard to find in more popular spots. The gentle waves and soft sand make it a perfect spot for a quiet day by the ocean.


No matter what kind of beach experience you're looking for, Hilo has something to offer. From popular spots with crystal clear waters to family-friendly destinations and breathtakingly beautiful beaches, you'll find it all in this Hawaiian paradise. So grab your sunscreen, pack a picnic, and head out to explore the best beaches in Hilo. And remember, before booking any watersport activities or boat rentals, be sure to check out Getmyboat for the best deals and options!

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