Papakōlea Green Sand Beach, Naalehu

4.3
#1 of 10 in Things to do in Naalehu
Must see · Beach · Nature / Park
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Thought to be where Polynesians first arrived in the Hawaiian Islands Papakōlea Green Sand Beach marks the southernmost point within the 50 states of the United States. A National Historical Landmark District, the area houses the ruins of an ancient Hawaiian heiau (temple), a fishing shrine, and other cultural relics. You access Ka Lae via a 19 km (12 mi) narrow paved narrow road. When the road forks near its end, you can go south to the point or east to Papakolea Beach, known for its green sand, which comes from the mineral olivineis. The beach boasts waters rich with red snapper and ulua, making it a popular fishing spot. Swimming in not advised due to dangerous currents and powerful winds. Make Papakōlea Green Sand Beach a centerpiece of your Naalehu vacation itinerary, and find what else is worth visiting using our Naalehu online journey planner.
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Papakōlea Green Sand Beach reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
2,133 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • Since there are only 4 Green Sand Beaches in the world and you are on Kona - Big Island, then visit the area. The drive is almost 2 hours from Kailua Pier. You can stop in Oceanview at Coffee... 
    Since there are only 4 Green Sand Beaches in the world and you are on Kona - Big Island, then visit the area. The drive is almost 2 hours from Kailua Pier. You can stop in Oceanview at Coffee...  more »
  • My nine year old daughter and I love to hike and have done some longer ones, but this one was rough. It's close to 6 miles round trip if you go down to the beach. The south shore of the island is... 
    My nine year old daughter and I love to hike and have done some longer ones, but this one was rough. It's close to 6 miles round trip if you go down to the beach. The south shore of the island is...  more »
Google
  • The hour and a half drive was a pretty drive. When we got there we were told we could get a ride down there for $20 a person round trip. There was a loaded truck all ready to go we got there and they did not wait for us. They told us that we had to wait until there were 10 people before they would send another truck out. There were five trucks sitting there doing nothing. We waited for a half an hour and they still wouldn't take us down. Make sure you bring your tennis shoes so you can hike by yourselves and not depend upon the Hawaiian people to take you down because they're very lazy people and only want to take your $20 per person and wait to make sure that their truck is fully loaded. Very disappointing. These people gave Hawaiian people a very bad name. Tourism is what makes this island I think they forget that.😡 Probably won't be coming back to this island 🥺
  • Great beach, you have to decide if it’s green or not :) Do: bring water and food, also definitely bring a towel as you will want to get into the water! Hike from either south point or the designated parking spot (saves you about 15 minutes one way). It’s a great hike, with beautiful scenery. WEAR SUNSCREEN AND HILING BOOTS. Don’t: step onto sacred land and burial grounds. Locals offer a ride on their pick-ups. Some say by doing that you support local businesses. Others say you support destruction of the land, as trucks and pick-ups leave trails. The ride didn’t seem to be too comfortable, the hike is great (see above)

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