20 Dec 2021
Sunset in Hawaii is a magical experience that has been appreciated ever since ancient Hawaiians first gazed out at these beautiful golden waters. No matter the time of year, at the end of a long day, the sun will set the sky and ocean on fire as it takes its final bow behind the horizon. Facing south out to sea is the best way to enjoy a Maui sunset, and with this week’s Kihei neighborhood guide, we’d like to highlight some of the absolute best spots in South Maui to enjoy this magnificent experience. All the beaches in Kihei are world-class when it comes to sunset views; however, there are a few spots that stand out to us as being ideal for experiencing the magic of Hawaii. All these locations are either a short walk or drive away from Kihei.
Sugar Beach – Kihei
This lesser-known gem is located in north Kihei and offers the longest stretch of sand on the entire island, covering approximately 6 miles of Maui’s coast. With plenty of room for everyone to enjoy, this beach is an ideal location to experience Maui’s fiery transition from day to night as it wraps around the silhouette of the West Maui Mountains.
Keawakapu Beach - Kihei
Keawakapu Beach is the opposite of Sugar Beach in many ways. World-renowned and located on the south end of Kihei, this stunning beach offers unparalleled views of the sunset. You’ll find that here, lava rocks and tidepools stand out from the smooth golden sand to provide a perfect backdrop to close out a day in Hawaii.
Kamaole Beach Park (I,II,III) - Kihei
For those hoping to stay closer to central Kihei, these three beaches are fantastic places to relax at the end of the day. Beaches I and III offer substantial green spaces, picnic tables, and barbecues that are perfect for enjoying sunset with dinner. Kamaole II has the added bonus of being in close proximity to several restaurants and bars, so you can sit back, relax, and take in the view with a refreshing drink in your hand.
Big Beach (Makena State Park) - Makena
Just a short drive south of Wailea, Big Beach or “Bigs” is one of the most popular beaches on Maui and is amazing for watching sunset. Stretching for 1.5 miles, this beach certainly lives up to its name, and although it is popular, there is plenty of space to spread out and enjoy. Being farther south than the other aforementioned beaches means the scenery is different here, offering views of Red Hill to the west and different angles of Kaho‘olawe and Molokini Crater, this beach is a must-see.
Po’olenalena (Chang's Beach) – Wailea
This beach is situated at the end of Wailea, between Big Beach and Keawakapu. Despite greatly increasing in popularity recently, this beach is still relatively unknown compared to others in the area, and because of the uncrowded conditions, the views are ideal for aspiring photographers.
For more detailed information about our top beach recommendations for Maui, as well as Big Island and Kauai, see our Things to Do activity guide.