Waiʻanapanapa State Park means “glistening fresh water,” and the beach truly lives up to its name. Located off the Hana Highway at mile marker 32, Waiʻanapanapa State Park is 120 tropical acres filled with all the natural wonders of Hawaii. Waiʻanapanapa State Park features seabird colonies, natural stone arches, sea stacks, camping facilities, ancient lava caves, hidden blowholes, heiau (religious temples), anchialine pools, panoramic vistas, and of course the black sand beach.
The black sand beach is named Pa’iloa. The beach is small and is located on the east side nestled in a private cove. But it’s worth the visit. There’s a naturally made lava arch in the water. The beach features black glistening granules add to a dark and mysterious atmosphere. The black sand was created over millennia by rough surf pounding on a fresh, bubbling lava flow. The Wai‘anapanapa Black Sand Beach can be seen on the Road to Hana, and is always a great stop.
Swimming at the black sand beach is only possible when the ocean is very calm. This is due to rip currents forming when the surf is high. But it’s the perfect spot for tanning or dipping your feet (remember that black sand can be much hotter than white sand). However, there are also two spring-fed sea caves that can be explored. The caves are both filled with freshwater which floats above the salt water.
Enjoy the photographic views: incredible coastline, mysterious caves, blowholes and sea arches of the Wai‘anapanapa Black Sand Beach.
What to Bring to Wai‘anapanapa Black Sand Beach
- Comfortable shoes for walking
- Hat and Sunglasses
- Water bottle