Guide to the Best Paia Beaches: North Shore Maui (2024)

by | Apr 14, 2024

Are you looking for the best Paia beaches in Maui? Whether you’re planning a trip to Maui or simply dreaming of sandy shores and sunsets, the beaches near Paia on the North Shore of Maui are truly a slice of paradise.

What Are the Best Paia Beaches?

The best Paia, Maui beaches are Baldwin Beach Park, Ho’okipa Beach Park, Sugar Cove Beach, Mama’s Beach, Kanaha Beach Park, Baby Beach, Paia Bay, and Tavares Beach.

Keep reading to learn more about each of these stunning Paia beaches!

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This guide about the best Paia beaches will help you discover which beaches have the softest sand, the best waves for surfing, and where to enjoy a quiet beach day with fewer crowds.

From the popular Paia Bay to Baldwin Beach, we’ll explore a variety of stunning locations. Our aim is to give you a snapshot of the top spots along this beautiful coastline, so you can plan your beach days with ease.

Whether you want to go snorkeling, enjoy a family picnic, or just soak up the sun, there’s a perfect spot waiting for you.

Ready to explore the best beaches in Paia? Let’s get started on this sandy adventure and find your perfect beach spot on the North Shore of Maui!

Key Takeaways of Paia Beaches

  • Baldwin Beach Park is a top spot near Paia that offers over two miles of white sand, perfect for windsurfing, bodysurfing, and picnics. It has amenities like showers and picnic tables but remember to bring sunscreen because it gets sunny.
  • Ho’okipa Beach Park is known worldwide as the windsurfing capital with big waves especially during winter from December to February. It’s also a great place to see Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles on the shore without disturbing them.
  • Sugar Cove Beach is ideal for families looking for calm waters and less crowded spots near Paia. The beach is good for snorkeling and kiteboarding, offering tranquil sea conditions most year-round.
  • Mama’s Beach, or Kuau Cove, provides peaceful settings away from crowds for swimming, snorkeling, and enjoying sea pools. While there are few amenities here, the beauty makes it worth visiting.
  • Kanaha Beach Park attracts locals with its kitesurfing opportunities and facilities including picnic areas and lifeguard services. Located close to Kahului Airport, it’s accessible yet not overrun by tourists.

Recommended Maui North Shore Tours Nearby

The Top North Shore Beaches in Paia, Maui

Paia’s North Shore in Maui is a beach lover’s dream. You’ll find everything from vast expanses of soft sand to secret spots with stunning views.

1. Baldwin Beach Park

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Baldwin Beach Park shines as a gem on Maui’s North Shore, near the town of Paia.

This beach stretches over two miles of fine white sand and beckons both visitors and locals for windsurfing adventures.

With amenities like public lavatories, showers, BBQ grills, picnic spots, and a large sheltered area, it makes for the perfect day out by the sea.

Remember to pack sunscreen and water, though — this spot doesn’t have much shade.

For those who love diving into waves without a board, Baldwin Beach is your go-to place for bodysurfing and bodyboarding.

Thanks to vigilant lifeguards keeping watch, you can enjoy these activities safely.

It’s not just about sports here; the beach invites you to relax on its expansive shores or enjoy a meal with friends at one of the picnic tables under the pavilion roof.

Preparation is key when visiting Baldwin Beach Park. Since it faces full sun exposure, don’t forget UV protection and your surfboard or boogie board!

2. Ho’okipa Beach Park

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Ho’okipa Beach Park is the windsurfing capital of the world, where waves and wind meet to create perfect conditions for this exciting water sport.

Surfers from all over come here to ride the big waves.

In winter, from December to February, these waves get even bigger! It’s a sight you don’t want to miss.

This beach isn’t just for surfers; it’s also one of the top spots on Maui’s North Shore to see Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles. They often rest on the sandy shore in the afternoon sun.

Watching these amazing creatures is a peaceful way to spend your time at Ho’okipa Beach Park.

Remember: Look but don’t touch! These turtles are protected by law.

The weather at Ho’okipa can change quickly, and strong ocean currents make swimming dangerous sometimes.

There are safety signs and lifeguards there to help keep everyone safe. So always listen to their advice before you jump into the water or wander too far down the beach.

RELATED PODCAST: Maui Travel Guide

3. Sugar Cove Beach

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Credit: Maui Now

Sugar Cove Beach sits quietly near Paia, away from the usual tourist spots. It’s a favorite among locals and a hidden gem if you’re after calm seas.

Perfect for families, this beach offers tranquil waters safe for kids to splash around in.

Its close location to Paia makes it easy to mix beach days with exploring the town.

Activities here cater to anyone looking to relax or venture into water sports like snorkeling and kiteboarding.

The atmosphere stays serene, letting visitors sunbathe or enjoy peaceful moments by the ocean without crowds.

Sugar Cove Beach proves less is more with its simple beauty and relaxed vibe.

4. Mama’s Beach (Kuau Cove)

mamas beach - kuau cove_2

Credit: The Maui News

Mama’s Beach, also known as Kuau Cove, sits just past Paia town. This place is a gem for those who love swimming, snorkeling, and discovering sea pools.

It offers peace away from the crowded spots on Maui’s North Shore.

You won’t find big crowds here, making it perfect for families or anyone wanting to relax by the sea.

This beach doesn’t belong to Mama’s Fish House but welcomes everyone.

Amenities are few, so bring what you need for the day. The calm waters and scenic views make it an ideal spot for a quiet beach day.

Enjoy the sand between your toes without the hustle of more popular beaches nearby.

5. Kanaha Beach Park

Kanaha Beach Park on Maui_2

Technically in Kahului, a few minutes down the road from Paia, Kanaha Beach Park is a big, peaceful place by the sea that locals love.

People come here to play with the wind and waves, using kites and boards. This beach has everything you need – places to sit and enjoy a meal outside, clean toilets, showers to rinse off saltwater, and lifeguards watching over swimmers.

Moreover, it’s easy to get here from Kahului Airport because there’s plenty of room for cars.

This spot on Maui’s North Shore stands out because it offers awesome activities without too many people around.

You can ride the waves if that’s your thing or just chill and soak up the serene vibe far from busy tourist spots.

But keep in mind – weather changes fast here, ocean currents are strong, and breaks near the shore can be tricky. For those who love water sports or just want a calm day by the ocean – Kanaha Beach Park is perfect.

6. Baby Beach, Sprecklesville Area

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Baby Beach in Sprecklesville area, Maui is a great option for families with young children.

It is a protected beach with a natural barrier reef that creates calm, shallow waters, making it ideal for toddlers and young kids to play safely in the water.

The beach is located just south of Baldwin Beach, which has restrooms and other amenities.

While Baby Beach itself does not have restrooms, the larger Baldwin Beach nearby does.

The area is known for its beautiful scenery, with views of the West Maui Mountains, and it is a quieter, less crowded beach compared to some of the more popular tourist spots.[

Overall, Baby Beach is a great choice for families looking for a safe, relaxing beach experience on Maui.

7. Paia Bay

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Paia Bay is located just east of Baby Beach, connected by a trail that runs along the coastline.

Like Baby Beach, Paia Bay features a natural reef that creates calm, protected waters, making it a good choice for families with young children.

The beach has soft, sandy areas as well as some rocky sections. While Paia Bay does not have the same level of amenities as the larger Baldwin Beach Park, it is still a scenic and peaceful spot to visit.

There are no lifeguards, restrooms, or other facilities directly at Paia Bay itself. However, the nearby Baldwin Beach Park does have restrooms, showers, and other amenities that beachgoers can utilize.

Paia Bay is known for its beautiful views of the West Maui Mountains and the coastline. It tends to be less crowded than some of the more popular tourist beaches in the area.

The beach can get quite windy at times, so it’s a good idea to check the conditions before visiting.

Overall, Paia Bay is a lovely, protected beach option that is well-suited for families looking for a quieter, more natural beach experience in Maui.

8. Tavares Beach

Tavares Beach in Maui_1

Tavares Beach, also known as Lamalani Beach, is a medium-sized crescent-shaped sandy white beach located just outside of the town of Paia on Maui’s North Shore.

The beach is about 150 yards long and has easy access and ample parking.

Tavares Beach is a popular spot for swimming, snorkeling, spearfishing, rock jumping, surfing, and windsurfing. The reef close to shore helps keep the waves relatively mild, making it a good option for families with young children.

However, the beach can get quite crowded on weekends and holidays, so it’s best to visit during the week if possible.

The beach does have some downsides – it can have a lot of seaweed at certain times of year, and there are exposed boulders in the water that beachgoers need to be aware of.

There are also no facilities like restrooms or showers directly at Tavares Beach itself.

Overall, Tavares Beach is a scenic and relatively uncrowded option on Maui’s North Shore, though it can get busy on weekends.

Activities and Features of Each Beach

Every beach in Paia has something special to offer. You’ll find cool waves perfect for surfing at Ho’okipa Beach Park, and colorful fish waiting to be discovered while snorkeling at Sugar Cove Beach.

Enjoy a peaceful picnic under the sun at Kanaha Beach Park, where you can relax with friends or family.

Each shore here promises adventure and relaxation in its unique way, setting the stage for unforgettable memories by the sea.

Whether you’re riding the waves or exploring underwater worlds, Paia’s beaches have it all.

Surfing at Ho’okipa Beach Park

Ho’okipa Beach Park is known as the windsurfing capital of our planet. Surfers from all over come to ride its waves.

The strong winds and big surf breaks make it a perfect spot for this thrilling water sport.

You’ll see many people with their boards, waiting for the right wave to catch.

This beach is also one of the top places to see Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles basking on the sand. After surfing, you can relax and watch these amazing creatures from a distance.

Snorkeling at Sugar Cove Beach

Sugar Cove Beach offers a quiet spot away from crowds, perfect for families and anyone looking to enjoy the underwater world in peace.

The calm waters here provide a safe haven for snorkeling adventures.

Thanks to its secluded location, you’ll find an array of sea life close to shore. Expect to see colorful fish and perhaps even a turtle or two gliding through the clear water.

Late spring through early fall marks the best time to visit for smooth sea conditions. This timeframe ensures that your under-the-sea exploration is as enjoyable as possible.

So grab your snorkel gear and prepare for an unforgettable experience at Sugar Cove Beach, where the ocean’s treasures await just beneath the surface.

Picnicking at Kanaha Beach Park

Kanaha Beach Park is a great spot for picnics on Maui’s North Shore. This beach has plenty of picnic tables where you can sit and enjoy your meals.

With the blue ocean in front of you and the gentle breeze around, it feels just perfect.

The park also offers clean restrooms and showers, making it easy to clean up after a day of fun.

Families love this place because it’s quiet and less crowded than other beaches. A lifeguard is always on duty, adding an extra layer of safety for kids playing in the water or sand.

If you’re bringing food, there are spots with roofs that offer shade from the sun.

Bringing your meal here means enjoying some time away from busy restaurants. It lets you relax with waves as background music.

Pack sandwiches, fruits, and cold drinks before heading out to Kanaha Beach Park for a memorable beach day experience.

When to Visit North Shore Beaches in Maui

windsurfers in maui

Maui’s North Shore is a gem that shines year-round, but its beaches have secrets depending on the season.

From late spring to early fall, the ocean calms down. This makes it perfect for snorkeling and swimming.

The water is clearer and quieter, inviting you to explore its underwater world or just float under the sun.

Keiki (kids) can play in shallower waters during these months. It’s a time when families can enjoy beach days fully.

Winter brings a different kind of magic to the North Shore, especially from December to FebruarySurfers flock to spots like Ho’okipa Beach Park because of the huge waves.

Watching surfers tackle these giants from places like Hookipa Beach Lookout becomes an exciting activity in itself.

Even if you don’t surf, feeling the power of nature from shore is unforgettable.

Choosing when to visit depends on what you want from your trip. For calm seas and family-friendly swims, come between late spring and early fall.

Adventure seekers looking for big waves should aim for winter months.

No matter when you decide to come, Maui’s North Shore beaches offer experiences that stay with you long after your tan fades.

Essential Tips for Visiting Paia’s Beaches

Visiting Paia’s beaches in Maui brings you closer to paradise. You’ll find fewer crowds and a chilled-out vibe that makes every moment memorable.

Here are some key tips to make your beach trip perfect.

  1. Pick the right timeLate spring to early fall is best for calm waters ideal for snorkeling and swimming. If you love big waves, visit Ho’okipa Beach Park between December and February.
  2. Protect marine life: Always remember, the ocean is home to countless sea creatures. Use reef-safe sunscreen to keep their habitat clean and safe.
  3. Pack wisely: Bring everything you might need—sunscreen, water, snacks, and a beach towel or chair. Some beaches lack shops nearby, so it’s smart to come prepared.
  4. Respect local guidelines: Pay attention to any posted signs about swimming conditions or protected areas on the beach. Lifeguards know these waters well; listen if they offer advice.
  5. Explore responsiblyLeave no trace behind to preserve these beautiful spots for others. Take your trash with you and avoid disturbing wildlife or plants.

Enjoying Paia’s stunning beaches means soaking in their natural beauty while respecting the environment and local culture. These simple steps ensure a fantastic experience for everyone who visits this special part of Maui.

Guide to Paia Beaches Wrap-Up

As we wrap up our tour of the best Paia beaches in Maui, it’s clear that this stunning area offers something special for everyone.

From the bustling waves at Ho’okipa Beach Park, ideal for windsurfing, to the tranquil shores of Sugar Cove Beach, perfect for family outings, Paia’s beaches embody the spirit of Aloha.

Whether you’re looking to catch some big waves, observe Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles, or simply enjoy a peaceful day under the sun on a long white sand beach, Paia has a spot just for you.

What beach activity excites you the most? Are you the adventurous type looking to ride the North Shore’s famous waves, or perhaps you’re more into relaxing and sunbathing on a white sandy beach with a good book?

We hope this guide helps you find your perfect beach day in Paia.

Remember, whether you’re planning a full day of activities or just a quick visit, always respect the local guidelines and help keep our beautiful beaches clean. Happy beach-going!

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FAQs to Pai Beaches

1. What makes Paia beaches stand out in Maui?

Paia beaches are a North Shore paradise, famous for their long white sand stretches and beautiful views.

They have everything from small, secret spots like Secret Beach to popular destinations like Baldwin Beach. Plus, the hippie vibe of Paia town adds a unique charm you won’t find elsewhere on Maui.

2. Can I find any hidden gems among Paia’s beaches?

Absolutely! If you’re up for an adventure, Makana Maui Adventures can guide you to some less-known spots away from the usual crowd. Places like Stable Road Beach or the more secluded Tavares Beach offer peace and quiet along with stunning scenery.

3. Are there family-friendly beaches in Paia?

Yes, indeed! Baby Beach is perfect for families looking for calm waters where little ones can play safely. It has a protective reef that keeps big waves at bay, making it an ideal spot for a fun day under the sun.

4. How do I choose which beach to visit in Paia?

Think about what you want from your beach day… Looking for great snorkeling spots? Try Baldwin Beach early in the morning before heading out on the Road to Hana. Wanting just to chill and maybe catch some windsurfers in action? Head over to Paia Bay or Stable Road later in the day.

5. What should I bring for my beach trip near Paia?

Sunscreen is a must – protect that skin! Also, pack plenty of water, snacks (poke from Foodland is always a hit), and maybe even something for shade like an umbrella or tent if planning to stay all day since not all beaches have shaded areas.

6. Any tips on making my trip unforgettable?

Start your day early; this way, you’ll snag good parking spots (which can be scarce) and experience serene morning vibes by the ocean… And remember – leave no trace behind so these gorgeous beaches remain pristine for years to come.

Bryan Murphy

Bryan Murphy

Bryan Murphy, owner of Hawaii’s Best Travel, is a certified Hawaii destination expert from the Hawaii Visitors Bureau. He actively participates in the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau as a member and has a strong educational background focused on local culture and sustainability. As the host of “Hawaii’s Best Travel,” a top-30 US travel podcast, Bryan combines his years of experience with valuable insights. He connects with a broad online community, reaching nearly half a million people, and offers a richer, more responsible way to experience Hawaii.