The Insiders Guide to Napili Bay Beach in Maui

Napili Bay Beach is one of West Maui’s most visited beaches with good reason. The turquoise water, white sandy beach, great crashing waves are magnificent to behold. Additionally, the bay is within walking distance from some of the best 5-star resorts in Maui for convenience and comfort.

This beach is perfect for swimming, whale watching, paddle boarding, and great snorkeling. Visitors and hotel guests can also enjoy relaxing activities like sunbathing and sunset watching. Though not as expansive as Kaanapali, the crescent-shaped Napili Beach is exceptionally calming and beautiful.

Key Features:

  • Location: Napili Honokawai, West Maui
  • Lifeguard on duty: None
  • Beach Length (Approx.): 0.7 miles
  • Beach Width (Approx.): 0.5 to 0.7 yards
  • Facilities: Showers, public restrooms, general store, restaurants, equipment rentals.
  • Activities: Snorkeling, stand up paddleboarding, surfing, swimming, sunbathing
  • Napili Beach Parking: Very limited
  • Camping: Allowed
  • Danger: It can get really windy

If you want to unwind from the busy city life, Napili Beach may be the best spot for you. This article will be your guide to prepare you for your trip with what to expect, activities to partake in, and how to enjoy yourself best. We will cover:

How Do You Get to Napili Beach? 

To get to Napili Beach, follow the signage to Kuihelani Highway 380 and Lahaina. Continue on Highway 380 until the Junction on Honoapi’ilani Highway and choose left on Lahaina. 

Head three blocks down Napili Hau Road towards the ocean, slightly past the village, and then turn right on the Lower Honoapiilani Road. Drive for approximately two kilometers, and you’ll be right at one of the best Maui beaches!

If you choose to take public transport, take a bus from Whaler’s Village, and drop off at Napili Village. Walk down the public access path, which will lead you to the beach. 

Where Is Napili Beach? 

Napili Bay Beach is a renowned beach located in the north end area of Lahaina in West Maui, Hawaii just off of the Honoapiilani Highway. This beautiful beach is located towards the south of the Kapalua area, right in front of the Napili Kai Beach Resort, and it’s where local Hawaiian culture and tourism blend. 

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What Can You Do at Napili Bay? 

One of the top activities for tourists at Napili Beach is snorkeling. Tourists are drawn to this activity because of the inviting, warm waters and native wildlife. This fun-filled activity can be done as a group activity or individually.

Napili Bay is a haven for snorkelers due to the flanking lava flows and tide pools that make the water ideal for most people. The white sloping sand and quiet waters also mean you may have a higher chance of seeing wildlife, making the this spot ideal for marine enthusiasts. 

Swimming at Napili Bay all comes down to individual skills and personal preferences. If you’re traveling with little kids, swimming at your resort pool and playing by the shores would be safe. 

However, Napili Bay is not well-protected from the waves compared to other peaceful Maui beaches, making it perfect for boogie boarding. The rough winter surf and waves, coupled with the absence of lifeguards available, may prove dangerous for novice swimmers. 

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Napili Bay is well known for its sea turtle population and clear, glassy waters, giving snorkelers a terrific view of the famous Hawaiian green sea turtles. You can also find equipment for rental at any general store along the beach to make the snorkeling sessions or other nearby attractions more enjoyable. 

The best place to view sea turtles is on the south end of the beach, but remember not to touch them! Touching sea turtles is considered a federal offense and will attract a hefty fine. 

Is Napili Beach Family Friendly? 

Napili Beach is not one of the more crowded beaches on Maui. You’ll find numerous fun activities exciting activities to keep children busy and occupied throughout the holiday, including swimming, surfing, sun tanning, and snorkeling under multiple adult supervision.

Napili Beach is also the perfect location to blend into the local life compared to other beaches in West Maui. Additionally, all rooms in the resorts along Napili Beach, like Napili Surf Beach Resort, Honokeana Cove, or Hale Napili Condos come with air-conditioning, making the humid Maui weather tolerable for their guests.

Napili Beach Parking

The parking situation at Napili Beach is, unfortunately, rather difficult. The massive tourist crowds with rental cars, Island natives trying to get around, and staff working at the restaurants and resorts make trying to park a nightmare.

If finding a spot to park is a necessity for you, we advise that you wake up at the crack of dawn and get to the parking lot early. Otherwise, we recommend taking taxis or local means of transportation.



Tips for Visiting Napili Bay Beach

  • It’s best supervise kids and beginners as they swim and snorkel in the bay, even on a calm day.
  • You can go to Napili Beach by private and public transportation from any of the Island hotels. If driving, it’s best to arrive early as the parking lot gets full fast.
  • It’s best to ask Maui locals and research before touching any marine life in Hawaii. Otherwise, you’ll be fined!

Frequently Asked Questions 

Let’s Go to Napili!

When looking for Maui activities, Napili Beach should be at the top of your list. The scenic Hawaii views, magnificent Napili sunset, and exciting water activities should be enough to capture your attention. However, watch out for the occasional dangerous tides as there aren’t any lifeguards on this side of Maui.