We Explored Halona Beach Cove – Oahu’s Hidden Gem

This small, secluded sandy beach is surrounded by rugged cliffs and was made famous for its appearance in the movie “From Here to Eternity”.

Aerial view of Halona Beach Cove

Did you know that there’s a secret beach cove right outside of Hawaii Kai?

Halona Beach Cove (also called Eternity Beach or Cockroach Cove) is a beach that’s hidden right next to the highway.

Halona Cove is hidden so well that even we sometimes forget that it exists! And we only live 10 minutes away!

We went to Halona Beach Cove to check out its beach, see its awesome rocky cliffs, and explore the lava tube that most people forget exists!

How to Get to Halona Beach Cove

Halona Beach Cove is located on Kalanianaole Highway between Hanauma Bay and Sandy Beach. No matter which direction you’re coming from, it’s a scenic drive around the rocky coastline.

As you veer along the windy road, you’ll be treated to sweeping views of the ocean and rocky coastline.

Parking at Halona Beach Cove 

Parking for Halona Beach Cove is at the Halona Blowhole Lookout. From the lookout, it’s a short walk down the rocky cliffside to the beach cove.

The parking situation at Halona Blowhole Lookout can sometimes get competitive. You might need to wait a few minutes for someone to leave before you can find a parking spot for yourself.

Don’t Forget to See the Blowhole First!

Once parked, take a few minutes to check out the blowhole. It’s a treat in itself!

On days with big surf, the blowhole will erupt out of the rocks into the air.

But if its a calm day, the blowhole might not erupt at all.

Walking the Trail Down to Cockroach Cove

The right side of the lookout overlooks the beach cove. Walk back towards the highway and you’ll find the trail down to the cove.

Be careful as you walk down since the trail is steep and slippery.

The rocky trail going down to Halona Beach Cove
The rocky trail going down to Halona Beach Cove

Swimming at Halona Beach Cove

Swimming at Halona Beach Cove is safe only if the conditions are right.

During most of the year, swells from the ocean flow right into the cove, creating a strong current that makes it unsafe for swimming.

Your best chance for a swim is during winter when the swells on this side of the island die down.

Halona Beach Cove Swimming
Awesome weather at Halona Beach Cove means that you can swim there!

However, the waves can get big on any day of the year at Halona Beach Cove, so we recommend taking a few minutes to observe the conditions when you get there to determine if it’s safe to get in. 

If you do decide to get in the water, we recommend bringing a snorkel since there’s quite a bit to see underwater. We’ve seen lots of fish and sea turtles swim right inside the cove.

Halona Beach Cove Lava Tube

One of the cool things about Halona Beach Cove is the lava tube behind the beach that extends into the cliffside. The tube goes about 50 yards, underneath the highway, and comes out on the other side.

You can walk nearly the entire distance of the tube until the very end, where it narrows down to about 3 feet high. So you’ll need to get on your hands and knees if you want to go out the other side.

What to Bring to Halona Beach Cove

Like any other adventure, you’ll have the best time if you pack properly.

Here’s what we recommend you bring for a trip to Halona Beach Cove:

  • Sun protection. There is no shade at Halona Beach Cove, so bring sunscreen at a minimum. We prefer long-sleeved shirts and wide-brimmed hats for sun protection.
  • Water. Hot days at the beach require lots of drinking water to stay hydrated.
  • Snacks. The beach tends to make people hungry, so bring a few snacks so you don’t go hungry.
  • Towel. If you’re going to swim at Halona Beach Cove, then don’t forget to bring a towel! A towel also works as protection from the sun in a pinch.
  • Snorkel. If the conditions are right, then Halona Beach Cove is an awesome place to snorkel!

Staying Safe at Halona Beach Cove

If you’re visiting Halona Beach Cove, we want you to stay safe. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • There’s no lifeguard at Halona Beach Cove. If you get swept out to sea, you’re on your own! We recommend staying near the shoreline within the confines of the cove if you decide the jump in the water.
  • There are no facilities at Halona Beach Cove. So make sure you use the bathroom before you go!
  • Watch out for rocks! Both inside the water and out – the rocks at Halona Beach Cove are sharp. When walking down to the beach, watch your step, and don’t stub your toe! And when you’re in the water, stay clear of the rocky walls since the waves tend to push you right into them.
  • Watch out for waves! The waves come in sets. One minute it will be calm – the next minute huge waves will be crashing on the shore.
  • Don’t get sunburned! The area around Halona Beach Cove tends to stay sunny most of the year, so you can count on some sunshine even if the rest of the island is cloudy. However, if you go there late in the day, the cove will be shaded from the sun by the cliffside.
Trey Lewis is an outdoor enthusiast. Whether its hiking knife-edge ridges or just fishing by the river, Trey isn't afraid to get dirty in search of the next adventure.

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