Hawaii offers plenty of state parks with an exciting range of attractions and activities to suit everyone. Not only are there many things to do for adults, but kids can also have a great time.
Located off Hana Highway on Maui, Waiʻanapanapa (meaning glistening water) features some of Hawaii's most enthralling sights. From crystal freshwater caves to ocean vistas, there are Instagram-worth moments everywhere. Here, you’ll have the chance to see a sparkling black-sand beach alongside the ocean, as well as natural stone arches, seabird colonies, blowholes, lava tubes, and anchialine pools.
Located on the windward coast of Oahu, Hanauma Bay is a beautiful tropical paradise that boasts a half-mile of pristine, sandy beach surrounded by exotic palm trees. This federally protected wildlife preserve is famous for snorkeling and diverse marine species, including the Humuhumunukunukuapua'a (Hawaii’s state fish), eagle rays, and turtles.
Nestled between Puako and Kawaihae, Hapuna Beach is known for being one of the most popular family-friendly beaches in Hawaii. The beach is perfect for water activities such as swimming, snorkeling, and surfing. Beach facilities include picnic tables, camping areas, a snack bar, showers, and a pavilion.
Enjoy the scenic wonders of Hawaii's state parks while hiking along their exciting trails. You won’t experience such landscapes anywhere else in the world.
Nestled near Honolulu, Diamond Head is a favorite hiking destination, with stunning coastal views of Oahu and Waikiki. The saucer-shaped crater was formed by an explosive eruption about 300,000 years ago. Just a short drive from Waikiki, this challenging, uneven terrain features two sets of stairs (a total of 175 steps), old military bunkers, and underground tunnels. Waikiki Beach and sweeping ocean vistas make the hike well worth the effort.
Known as the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific,” Waimea Canyon is located on the west of Kauai and a favorite destination for hiking and nature trips. This geological wonder stretches one mile wide, 14 miles long, and 3,600 feet deep. Venture to the popular Waimea Canyon lookout for panoramic views of deep valley gorges, rugged crags, and crested buttes.
Located on the northeastern Hilo Coast, Akaka Falls State Park offers two breathtaking Hawaii waterfalls on a short hike. Akaka, one of Hawaii’s most famous waterfalls, plunges 422 feet into a stream-eroded canyon. The stroll to the falls leads you through lush rainforest with bamboo groves, wild orchids, and draping ferns.
Whether you're seeking an adrenaline rush or wanting to catch the beauty of the island while getting some exercise, state parks in Hawaii have got you covered.
Located on the south end of Maui, Makena State Park is famous for its white-sand beaches – look forward to sunbathing, snorkeling, body boarding, and surfing. Makena also provides spectacular views of the Kaho’olawe and Haleakala mountains and the islands of Kahoolawe and Molokini. Makena State Park has two beaches, Oneloa and Little Beach (or Pu’u Olai).
Located on the south of Historic Kailua Village, Kealakekua Bay, a marine life conservation district, is famed for scuba diving, snorkeling, and kayaking. The bay's turquoise water is filled with vibrant coral and colorful tropical fish. Wander the historic sites, enjoy a picnic, or watch the dolphins swim in Kealakekua Bay.
Situated in the northwest of Kauai Island, Nā Pali Coast State Park is known for its majestic sea cliffs embellished with swift flowing streams, narrow valleys, dramatic sea caves, and cascading waterfalls. Take an adventurous hike along the 11-mile long Kalalau Trail. The park is not accessible by car, so exploring can only be done by kayak, boat, foot, helicopter, or small plane. For a different perspective of the park, a helicopter or small plane is your best bet, letting you sit back and relax while you catch the incredible views.