Hike the Makapu'u Point Lighthouse Trail

Hawaii Makapu'u Point Lighthouse

Added by Kelly Drake

Hike to views of the historical lighthouse overlooking the beautiful west side. This is also great exercise if you're looking to stretch your legs before exploring more of the island. 

  • Fun bodysurfing and beach day at Makapu'u Beach
  • A photographers dream, with ocean and earth landscapes, and amazing sunrises and sunsets

If you're looking to get moving and get your heart rate up or want a place to snap great photos, start with hiking to Makapu’u Lighthouse. The lighthouse was built in 1909 on a 600-ft cliff, which overlooks Makapu’u beach. The hike is more of an uphill walk and can be done in sandals unless you’re looking to run it. If you’re hiking it, it’s about an hour round-trip at an easy pace. 

Once you’ve made it back down to your car, drive north to Makapu’u beach, stake out your spot, throw your fins on, and get in the water. Makapu’u is a fun spot for bodysurfing and gets fairly consistent wind swell. If you’re not a great swimmer, it’s best to enjoy from the beach and break out the spam musubi. If you want to pick up some food to bring with you to the beach, head up 72 to Waimanalo and hit up Sweet Home Waimanalo for some BBQ.

Pack List

  • Hiking/ Running shoes
  • Fitness clothes
  • Water
  • Sun block
  • Bodysurfing fins (optional)
  • Swimsuit (optional)
Read More

Please respect the places you find on The Outbound.

Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures. Be aware of local regulations and don't damage these amazing places for the sake of a photograph. Learn More



Bodysurfing, Chillin, Hiking, Photography

Skill Level:



Year Round

Trail Type:



2.5 Miles

Elev. Gain:

708 Feet



Dog Friendly
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Handicap Accessible

Are we missing something?

Suggest an edit

How to Get There

about 2 months ago

Quick And Easy

This Was A Really Easy Hike. If You're Taking Kids, This Might Be A Good Place To Start. The Best Part Of The Trip Is Off Trail Where My Wife And I Found Tide Pools To Take A Swim. Without The Tide Pools The View At The Top Is Great. It's All Paved Road With No Restroom.

about 2 months ago

over 1 year ago

The current at this beach is strong so inexperienced swimmers are best off hanging out on the beach or doing the hike.

over 1 year ago

over 1 year ago

It can get really hot here in the summer, but winter whale watching was rewarding.

over 1 year ago

over 2 years ago

Prevailing trade winds, can, on occasion, blow swarms of Portuguese Man-of-War to shore. A simple check before swimming is to check the waterline, if you spot a bunch of blue bubbles across the tide line, you should reconsider going out. *Also Makapu'u features some extreme under tows and rip currents that can challenge even the most advanced bodysurfers and swimmers, unless you've been swimming here your entire life, it would be highly recommended to check in with the lifeguard.

over 2 years ago

almost 3 years ago

Had a blast bodysurfing!

almost 3 years ago

about 3 years ago

The trail can get a little hot & a little crowded, so I prefer to go early in the morning. Also, you can drop off of the main path & hike down to some tide pools that are big enough to swim in (tide permitting, of course).

about 3 years ago

over 3 years ago

The hike is pretty easy and offers up a great view once you make it to the top! Bodysurfing at Makapu'u is really fun and it's more user-friendly than Sandy's.

over 3 years ago

Added by Kelly Drake

More Adventures Nearby

Beach Day at Yokohama

Hawaii / Yokohama

Getting There:   Traveling from Honolulu, follow signs toward Waianae: the H1 turns into Farrington highway (93) as you reach the west side of the island.

Erik Holmes
3 Saves

Hike the Wiliwilinui Ridge Trail

Hawaii / Wiliwilinui Trailhead

Getting there:  Traveling eastbound on the H1, from Waikiki, the H1 becomes the Kalanianaole Highway as you pass the Kahala mall...

Erik Holmes
5 Saves

Swim in the Waikoko Stream & Waterfall

Hawaii / Waikoko Stream Parking Area

You will need a 4WD high clearance vehicle to reach this trail. To reach the trailhead, take Highway 580 which will eventually turn to dirt.

Dan Deublein
10 Saves