The Big Island is a phenomenal surf spot so if you’re considering a trip to Hawaii and plan on starting with Oahu, consider finishing with The Big Island. The waves are powerful in the winter but surfing is outstanding throughout the year. The West side, Kona, has a good number of cool surf spots, including some for beginners. The East side, which is in Hilo and is the windward side is a place for experienced surfers.
Planning a surf trip to the Big Island? Stay in one of our Kona vacation rentals.
Located on the Big Island’s West Shore, Banyans is a popular surf spot a few miles from downtown Kona. Beginners can use this surf spot to watch the experienced local surfers. The best swell directions are from the west and southwest and the best wind direction is from the northeast. Banyans is best to surf in the summer and the surfboards to use are shortboards, longboards, funboards or stand-up paddle boards. The waves are hollow and it’s a left reef break. The bottom is reef and coral so keep an eye out for the sharp rocks and sea urchins. It’s a local scene so if you surf, keep in check the standard surf etiquette and be prepared to show your skills.
Both an excellent snorkeling and cool surf spot. Kahaluu is nifty, with three sections of reef with lagoons in between. The farther the reef, the bigger the waves. This surf spot is located past Magic Sands beach. Use shortboards, funboards, longboards or stand-up paddle boards for optimal surfing. The best wind direction is from the east and the best swells are from the west and southwest. Kahaluu is crowded in the summer it’s a reef and coral bottom, with sea life including sea urchin and sharp rocks so beginners need to be extra careful.
The East side of Big Island has a wondrous surf spot, Honolii. You’ll find surfers and boogie boarders at this location beyond Hilo (Highway 19, past the cemetery). The best swell directions are from the east and northeast while the winds are from the west, southwest and south. Waves here, similar to some of the West side surf spots, are hollow and consistent, starting from three to five feet and up to 12’. It is a right and left rivermouth break. Look out for large, sharp rocks and keep in mind that it’s a local spot, so again, show respect for other surfers.
Stay nearby the east side surf breaks in one of our Kapoho vacation rentals.
A cool, remote spot that is perfect for beginners, Pine Trees is located near the airport north. Take Highway 19 and turn left when you see signs for the Natural Energy Lab. You’ll need a 4WD to get to Pine Trees. Both summer and winter are equally good surf seasons here, with wind directions flowing from the east. The swells are from the northwest, west and southwest, with a right reef break. Shortboards, longboards, funboards and stand-up paddle boards are all workable for a grand surf experience. Pine Trees has a reef and coral bottom, as do many of the Big Island surf spots. Weekends are a busy time and locals flock to this spot.
Located on the West shore in between Magic Sands and Kahaluu Beach Park. Here, you’ll find left breaking waves with swells from the northwest and southwest and winds from the east and southeast. Summer is when surfers most often visit Lymans. Bring your shortboard, longboard, funboards or stand-up paddle board. It’s another local spot but worthwhile for all skill levels. The reef and coral bottom are sharp, as are most of the other surf spots throughout the island.
Also, take a look at our Waikoloa condos located on the West shore of the Big Island.
Surfing on Big Island will bring plenty of exhilaration throughout the two seasons in Hawaii, summer and winter. The waters are generally clean and clear and most of the surfing here provides an opportunity to surf and watch local experts.