Trip Planner:   USA  /  Hawaii  /  Island of Hawaii  /  Mauna Kea Beach

Mauna Kea Beach, Island of Hawaii

4.8
Mauna Kea, is a dormant volcano on the island of Hawaii. Standing 4207m above sea level, its peak is the highest point in the state of Hawaii. Much of the mountain is under water; when measured from its oceanic base, Mauna Kea is over 10000m tall and is the tallest mountain on Earth. Mauna Kea is about a million years old, and has thus passed the most active shield stage of life hundreds of thousands of years ago. In its current post-shield state, its lava is more viscous, resulting in a steeper profile. Late volcanism has also given it a much rougher appearance than its neighboring volcanoes; contributing factors include the construction of cinder cones, the decentralization of its rift zones, the glaciation on its peak, and the weathering effects of the prevailing trade winds. Mauna Kea last erupted 6,000 to 4,000 years ago and is now considered dormant.In Hawaiian mythology, the peaks of the island of Hawaii are sacred. An ancient law allowed only high-ranking aliʻi to visit its peak. Ancient Hawaiians living on the slopes of Mauna Kea relied on its extensive forests for food, and quarried the dense volcano-glacial basalts on its flanks for tool production. When Europeans arrived in the late 18th century, settlers introduced cattle, sheep and game animals, many of which became feral and began to damage the mountain's ecological balance. Mauna Kea can be ecologically divided into three sections: an alpine climate at its summit, a Sophora chrysophylla–Myoporum sandwicense (or māmane–naio) forest on its flanks, and an Acacia koa–Metrosideros polymorpha forest, now mostly cleared by the former sugar industry, at its base. In recent years, concern over the vulnerability of the native species has led to court cases that have forced the Hawai'i Department of Land and Natural Resources to eradicate all feral species on the mountain.
Mauna Kea Beach is just one of the many highlights you can arrange to see using our online itinerary creator, Kawaihae Edition.
Source
Create an itinerary including Mauna Kea Beach

(Kawaihae is the nearest city to Mauna Kea Beach)

map
Mauna Kea Beach Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
335 reviews
TripAdvisor
  • The silky white sand is exquisite. I was barefoot the entire time and didn’t step on any rocks. It’s still hurricane season so waves could get rough but the hotel keeps you informed and you can walk o...  more »
  • This wonderful beach was one of the ones we like on our trip to Hawaii. It is located in Golden and sunny Cove of hapuna Coast, on the big island, and offers the best to its visitors. A delightful Cove with white sand and crystalline, tropical trees and a calm sea and wonderful, like a Bay, ideal for stand up paddle, snorkel and also to relax during a whole day. Try to take food and picnic because there are few options to buy at the site. There are as always in Hawaii, showers and bathroom clean and available free of charge to use. Parking is also free but this is the greatest difficulty of this Beach because it is necessary to arrive early, preferably before 9 A.M. or after 4 P.M.-because there are only 35 spots of vehicles open to the public. The rest only for those who are staying at the resort. If the parking lot is crowded they don't allow in the lobby of the resort that person down to the beach is not that accesses the property driving your vehicle. Note that although the entry being via this gate is released and public beach access going on, however, the only restriction as regards the parking lot. Highly recommended. Simply spectacular beach. Worth staying all day and watch the sunset on the site. One of the 3 best of the archipelago and the best big island Beach, in front of the wonderful hapuna beach also.
    View original
  • This may have been my favorite beach on the Big Island. Beautiful white powdery sand, crystal clear blue water, just an overall great beach. We parked at Hapuna and walked along the coastal trail for ...  more »

Plan your trip to Island of Hawaii

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Where to stay in Kawaihae

Browse hotels, guesthouses, and unique homes and book your stay on the world's leading accommodation sites.
Live like a local, find unique places to stay
Millions of travel reviews on TripAdvisor

Plans in Island of Hawaii by other users

35 days in United States BY A USER FROM ITALY February, teens, culture, museums, shopping, wildlife, hidden gems PREFERENCES: February, teens, culture, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 15 days in United States BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 31 days in United States BY A USER FROM SWEDEN March, culture, historic sites, museums, fast-paced, popular PREFERENCES: March, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Fast-paced 29 days in United States BY A USER FROM SWEDEN May, outdoors, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, outdoors, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 26 days in United States BY A USER FROM SWEDEN April, culture, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: April, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 26 days in United States BY A USER FROM SWEDEN April, culture, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: April, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 25 days in United States BY A USER FROM SWEDEN May, culture, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 25 days in United States BY A USER FROM SWEDEN May, culture, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 31 days in United States BY A USER FROM SWEDEN May, culture, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 31 days in United States BY A USER FROM SWEDEN May, culture, historic sites, museums, hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, historic sites, museums ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 13 days in Hawaii BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, outdoors, romantic, wildlife, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, outdoors, romantic, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 10 days in Hawaii BY A USER FROM CANADA August, teens, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: August, teens, culture, outdoors, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium
View more plans