Kikaua Beach is a delightful little piece of paradise, a picturesque cove filled with soft white sand and lined by a beautiful palm tree park.
Located 12 miles north of Kailua-Kona along the Kohala Coast, Kikaua is one of our favorite family-friendly Hawaii Big Island beaches. Parents and non-swimmers alike will appreciate the calm water in the protected bay and the soft sandy bottom, making this a perfect swim beach for kids of all ages, even tiny tots!
Lava rock outcroppings rim the small swimming area, keeping it protected from the waves and currents of the open ocean. The lava that formed Kikaua Point flowed out from shore to form the natural barrier between Kakapa Bay to the south and Kukio Bay to the north.
Just beyond the inner reef of lava that forms a rim around the beach and swim area is another shallow tide pool that offers some interesting snorkeling, provided the tide isn’t too high. Use caution to avoid disturbing the bottom since the water can be quite shallow.
Stroll around Kikaua Point, through the palm tree park filled with soft sand. Wander over to the lush grassy knoll along the far northern edge of the park and spend some time relaxing in the shade on the lawn.
The scenery and offshore views at Kikaua Point are fantastic. We often find green sea turtles grazing in the shallows of the dazzlingly clear tide pools, or sunning themselves on the warm lava rocks.
Just a few hundred yards or so around the north of Kikaua point is Kukio Beach. This long ribbon of sand is a pretty beach to walk along but not great for swimming with the many lava rocks lining the shore.
Continuing along the shoreline beyond Kukio Beach, you will pick up a paved sidewalk that passes by the Four Seasons Hualalai Resort and golf course. Beyond Four Seasons you can walk along a quiet beach fronting what remains of the Kona Village Resort, which closed following heavy damage sustained during the March, 2011 tsunami.
Access to Kikaua is 12 miles north of Kailiua-Kona, between the 87 and 88 mile markers. Turn onto Kuki'o Nui Drive before (south of) the Hualalai Resort entrance on Highway 19. Follow the road to the parking area.
There are only 27 parking spaces at Kikaua. Since this is a gated community, just tell the guards at the gate you are going to the beach. Get here early, especially on weekends.
Follow the paved path leading to the beach. There are outdoor showers, bathrooms and drinking fountains.
If you arrive after the lot has filled, you can park at Kua Bay/Manini'owali Beach just to the south. Kua Bay is very easy to access from Highway 19. There is a rough shoreline trail that begins at the north end of Kua Bay and winds through a'a lava less than a mile to Kikaua Point.
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