Big Island Snorkling Tours Blog

15 Swimming Spots With The Clearest, Most Pristine Water In Hawaii

woman diving off boat

Megan Shute for Only In Your State on the most pristine snorkeling areas with the most pristine water.  Kealakekua Bay is the regular spot for our snorkel tours and is #4 on the list.

The Hawaiian Islands are home to some of the greatest beaches in the world. While we are happy to visit the many incredible beaches and best swimming holes in Hawaii, there are some beaches with warm turquoise waters that are a cut above the rest. From Kauai’s north shore and Oahu’s windward coast to Hawaii Island’s Kealakekua Bay, these 15 beaches are home to the clearest, most pristine water in the state.

  1. Lanikai Beach

With powder-soft, white sand, magnificent turquoise, clear water, and swaying palm trees, Lanikai Beach is an absolute paradise — if you can catch the beach during a low-traffic period, that is. You should also check out Lanikai’s neighbor, Kailua Beach.

Address: Kailua, HI 96734

  1. Pa’ako Cove

Also known as Secret Cove, this small — but gorgeous — stretch of sand is nestled between two homes in a southern Maui neighborhood. This beach in Hawaii is a popular spot for wedding ceremonies, but if you arrive early enough, you might have the stretch of sand to yourself.

Address: Makena Alanui, Kihei, HI 96753

  1. Hanalei Bay

This near-perfect semi-circle of white sand is located on Kauai’s north shore and is two miles long, 125 feet wide, and surrounded by majestic mountains. The bay is perfect for watersports of all kinds, and the stunning 300-foot long Hanalei Pier is perfect for fishing — or jumping off for a nice swim.

Address: Hanalei, HI 96714

  1. Kealakekua Bay

Hawaii Island’s beautiful reef-filled Kealakekua Bay is one of the state’s most historic bays and a known dolphin hangout. The bay is also home to the famous Captain Cook monument, and crystalline waters.

Address: 82-6099 Puuhonua Road, Kealakekua, HI 96704

  1. Kahe Point Beach Park

Known as Electric Beach by locals, this stretch of ocean features warm waters from the neighboring power plant, which draws sea life — and snorkelers — to Oahu’s leeward coast.

Address: 92-301 Farrington Highway, Kapolei, HI 96707

  1. Kaanapali Beach

Once the vacation retreat of choice for Hawaiian royalty, today Kaanapali is one of the island’s most popular expanses of white sands, surrounded by luxury hotels and resorts.

Address: 2435 Kaanapali Parkway, Lahaina, HI 96761

  1. Tunnels Beach

With enticing turquoise waters, a plethora a of sea life, and the mountains of the Na Pali coast behind you, there’s no questioning why Tunnels is one of the most popular snorkeling destinations on Kauai.

Address: Kauai, HI 96714

  1. Manini’owali Beach

Manini’owali, or Kua Bay as it is often called by the locals, is a secluded and small white sand beach in Hawaii with turquoise water located near the Kona airport. The beach is a popular spot for body surfing, or catching a signature Hawaiian sunset.

Address: 723990 Mamalahoa Highway, Kailua, HI 96740

  1. Ke’e Beach

Located on Kauai’s Na Pali Coast, Ke’e Beach is perhaps one of the most picturesque beaches on this list. It was also ranked as the sixth best beach in America by the Huffington Post.

Address: End Of Highway 560, Hanalei, HI 96714

  1. Halona Cove

Situated between Halona Point and the Halona Blowhole, this small rocky cove is perfectly picturesque and has been featured in films like Pirates of the Caribbean and 50 First Dates. Despite it’s Hollywood fame, the only way to reach the stunning cove is via a rocky and slightly treacherous hike, so it is often pretty secluded.

Address: 72 Kalanianaole Highway, Honolulu, HI 96805

  1. Poipu Beach Park

Approximately 1,000 feet long and 50 feet wide, this popular beach on Kauai’s southern shore is known for the small boulder breakwater that creates a protected pool-like area perfect for small children. Outside this swimming area are ideal wave conditions for surfers and body boarders.

Address: Koloa, HI 96756

  1. Honolua Bay

While Honolua Bay is one of Maui’s most popular snorkeling destinations, the turquoise water in this Marine Life Conservation District also makes for an out of this world kayaking excursion.

Address: Kapalua, HI 96761

  1. Hulopoe Beach Park

This picturesque beach, located on Lanai’s southern coast, is the most famous stretch of sand on this small island. This protected beach offers ideal swimming and snorkeling conditions, and, during low tide, the eastern side of the bay is home to several large volcanic rock tide pools full of sea life. It’s definitely one of the best swimming holes in Hawaii.

Address: Lanai City, HI 96763

  1. Lumahai Beach

With crystalline water, Lumahai beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in Hawaii but is also one of Kauai’s most dangerous. The steep sand slope creates a strong undertow and powerful waves that break on the sand. The conditions at this picturesque beach are best enjoyed during the summer months.

Address: Mile Marker 5-6, State Highway 560, Hanalei, HI 96714

  1. Maluaka Beach

Just south of Wailea at the end of Makena Road is Maluaka, a beach with clear waters and a plethora of honu and other sea life, perfect for snorkelers.

Address: 5330 Makena Alanui, Kihei, HI 96753


More Posts

The Hoku Nui

The Big Island In 1927

Join us on the Hoku Nui, our luxurious 50-foot catamaran for an award-winning snorkel or manta ray tour.  Our water adventures are a must-do when


Sea Paradise 2nd Manta Ray Tour

Looking for a moonlit manta ray tour?  Enjoy a leisurely dinner at your resort or favorite restaurant before joining Sea Paradises’ second manta ray tour

Manta Ray filter feeder

The Magnificant Manta Ray

Join our informative and friendly crew of the Hoku Nui, to sail out to Manta Ray Village for a Hawaiian vacation experience you’ll remember forever. 

Man with bike in front of sugarcane

Sugar Cane On The Big Island

Join our friendly crew on the Hoku Nui for a wonderful snorkel tour in the stunning blue waters of the Kona Coast or an amazing