Top Surfing Spots in Hawaii

The waters of the oceans cover most parts of the world resulting in a plethora of beaches and spots to surf. While some waves rise higher than the others, there is no place like Hawaii to hone your surfing skills. The island is considered to be the birthplace of surfing, and for good reason, too!

The first known surfers were known to be indulging in this popular sport for nearly 2000 years on Hawaii alone. Some of the stretches on the imperial beaches of these world-famous Pacific Ocean islands offer the best places to surf more than anywhere else in the world. Take a look at these prime places to skim over the waters while on your next trip to Hawaii and you surely won’t regret it. Just book yourself in one of the houses for rent in Hawaii and spend your summer surfing in this idyllic paradise.

Top Surfing Spots in Hawaii

Jaws Beach, Maui

Top Surfing Spots in Hawaii_Jaws Beach, Maui

Photo credit: WAVESTARVED

The towering and mighty waves which are said to be as high as 120 feet at times, are the main reasons this place is referred to as the ‘Jaws’ beach. Due to the high power of these waves, only the most experienced surfers should try this sport on Jaws Beach.

Laniakea, Oahu

Top Surfing Spots in Hawaii_Laniakea, Oahu

Photo credit: Jesus Calvo Loygorri

Some of the biggest waves in the world break onto the Oahu coastline, making it one of  the leading surfing spots in Hawaii. The strong currents experienced here make for a perfect setting for professional surfers to ride the water. The nearby  offshore lagoon, which is protected from the waves, is a haven for swimmers.

Banzai Pipeline, Oahu

Top Surfing Spots in Hawaii_Banzai Pipeline, Oahu

Photo credit: Veena Padmanabhan

Also known as just the “Pipe,” this well established surfing spot is located on the North Shore of Oahu. Site of a Hollywood film ‘Surfing Hollow Days’ the beach is known to have gotten its name from this picture. Because of the commanding waves of the ocean, it is considered to be the ultimate surfing zone by the pros, despite the dangers of Banzai.

Ho’okipa Beach, Maui

Top Surfing Spots in Hawaii Ho’okipa Beach, Maui

Photo credit: Mpora

The strong winds and the ocean currents make the Ho’okipa Beach a top spot for surfing enthusiasts on the North Shore of Maui. This beach serves as a location for many surfing tournaments like the Aloha Classic and Red Bull, which attract experienced surfers from all over.

Ke’ei, Kealakekua Bay, Big Island

The beaches here are no comparison to Banzai or Jaws level, but can provide long and consistent rides for all levels of surfers, providing the conditions are right. The Ke’ei beach also boasts of a 300-yards underwater reef, and is a not much visited area but relatively great for surfing.

Hanalei Bay, Kauai

Once considered to be one of the best beaches in the entire United States, Hanalei Bay is a crescent shaped beach which is rather undeveloped compared to its more famous Hawaiian counterparts. Surfers, here are instead rewarded with stunning views of the mountainous landscape. The winter months, when the waters are calm, is the best time to surf in this bay.

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Ala Moana Bowls, Oahu

Top Surfing Spots in Hawaii_Ala Moana Bowls, Oahu

Photo credit: Susan Swartz

The Ala Moana Beach Park occupies an area of roughly 76 acres just to the west of Waikiki. The water channel here since dredging, has resulted in creation of big bowls on the shallow ground. This makes it a bit tough and long to paddle out to the 200 yards to the ocean. Once you have managed to do that, the excellent surfing opportunities are well worth the effort.

Backyards, North Shore, Oahu

Often less crowded than other beaches, the ‘yards’ offers fast and advanced waves over a shallow reef below. The swell is good from all directions but it is best on the north-western side. Waves here can get big at times so caution is advised.

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Sunset, North Shore, Oahu

This beach is very popular with surfers from all over. The crowds are limited and the surfing hassle free. The waves here are not that tall, but should not be taken lightly as they turn fast and hollow and walls up equally faster. The reef is shallow and requires extensive paddling and strength to get into the waves.

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Honolua, North Shore, Maui

Top Surfing Spots in Hawaii_Honolua, North Shore, Maui

Photo credit: Harold Stiver

They say once you catch the wave in Honolua, the feeling is absolutely magical. Even though the beach here remains crowded most of the times, the joy of riding a wave in Honolua makes it all worth the effort. Though the swell window here is much smaller than the others because of the shelter afforded by the nearby islands, it makes it better. The trade winds too, are not intense here, and this makes for a consistent ride when you connect.

Puaena Point

This spot is situated adjacent to the Haleiwa Beach Park and is the best place on the island for beginners who are aiming to catch their first wave. Surfers and even paddle-boarders flock here to perfecting their technique. There are plenty of areas along the shore which provide shade in case you need a break.

An added advantage is that Puaena Point is not very far from Haleiwa, which is the ideal town to discover  with its surf shops, restaurants, art galleries and boutiques.

The geographical location of Hawaii is such, that it is constantly exposed to the currents of the Pacific Ocean from every direction. This phenomenon is ultimately responsible for churning up the storms and winds which act as a fuel to these great world-class waves, thus making it the mecca for surfers from every corner of the planet. This incredible sport has played a great part in developing the integrity and identity of the Hawaiian islands.

Jayce Cairo

Jayce is a linguaphile who speaks four languages and currently works as a translator to finance her various interests. Scoring very high on “Openness to Experience” on the Big Five Personality Test, she is an avid globetrotter who aspires to retire at 35 and travel for the rest of her life.

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