Hanauma Bay
Hanauma Bay

Hanauma Bay

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Oahu, Hawaii

The basics

Visitors to Hanauma Bay, which has a number of different coral reefs and lagoons to explore, will see hundreds of species of colorful tropical fish, other types of marine life, and vibrant coral. The wide sandy beach is also ideal for sunbathing and relaxing, and the nature preserve is well equipped with restrooms, changing rooms, a snack bar, and a picnic area, with lockers and snorkel gear available to rent.

Visiting Hanauma Bay can be as easy as joining half-day or full-day snorkeling tours, or stopping by on a hop-on hop-off bus tour from Waikiki. Some tours stop at the bay and take in other island highlights such as the Pearl Harbor National Memorial and Diamond Head. For independent travelers, Hanauma Bay offers round-trip shuttles from Waikiki hotels.

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Things to know before you go

  • Hanauma Bay State Park charges fees for admission and parking.

  • Hanauma Bay tickets must be purchased in advance using an online reservation system.

  • First-time visitors are required to watch a 9-minute educational video about marine life safety and preservation.

  • Trams take visitors from the parking lot down to the beach for a fee.

  • Snorkel gear and lockers are available to rent.

  • Beach wheelchairs are available to borrow at no cost.

  • Bring reef safe sunscreen.

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How to get there

Hanauma Bay State Park is located on the Kalanianaole Highway, about 10 miles (15 kilometers) east of Waikiki. The park offers round-trip shuttles from Waikiki hotels, about a 30-minute journey. City bus 22 makes the 45-minute trip to Hanauma Bay from Waikiki. On-site parking spots are available for a fee.

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When to get there

Hanauma Bay State Park is open daily except Mondays and Tuesdays. The 300-spot parking lot often fills up by mid-morning, and then it operates on a one-in, one-out basis, so it’s best to arrive early. Oahu has a mild, tropical climate with hotter days in summer and a rainy season that typically runs from November to March.

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Hanauma Bay Marine Education Center

The Marine Education Center opened in 2002 as part of an effort to focus on the conservation of the bay. With an average of 1 million visitors each year, it is crucial that everyone knows how to enjoy the park’s natural beauty responsibly. First-time visitors watch a short video in the center’s theater to learn how to interact with marine life safely. The center also has informational and historical exhibits, a gift shop, snack bar, and restrooms.

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