Pohue Bay Beach

Pohue Bay Beach - Gorgeous White Sand Beach in Remote South Hawaii
The Bottom Line:

Pohue Bay Beach is the remote, soft white sandy beach you see so often on Hawaiian postcards and photographs. It is remote, gorgeous, and boasts calm waters that are ideal for extended swimming. The only problem is that its beauty requires quite an adventure to get to. 

- The HawaiianIslands.com Local Expert Team

Are you up for an adventure? Eager to enjoy a remote beach and ocean landscape all to yourself? Then you are just the candidate for a trip to Pohue Bay Beach.

Pohue Bay Beach is a remote, isolated beach located on the Big Island’s southernmost shoreline. Until very recently, this beach was completely inaccessible due to all the land surrounding it being private property and there being lengthy discussions about easements and ease of access.

The good news is that in the last couple of years, a shared road has been established running south out of Ocean View all the way to Pohue Bay Beach. The bad news is that this is a very rough road, especially as you come within the last couple of miles. We do not recommend anything but a four-wheel-drive vehicle traversing down this way. Additionally, all of the land here is still privately held and near the end, there is a gate that is sometimes closed. Whether it’s closed or not, this is the point where most people will start hiking to reach the very end.

The hike from the gate to the beach is about two miles. Make sure to pack plenty of water before you go underway as much of the land here is loose lava rocks with next to no shade. These conditions make for a brutal hike during the summer and as such we do not recommend undertaking it with small children. The land here is ecologically and culturally sensitive (part of why major development plans have been continually delayed or changed), and as such it is important for visitors to stay on the trail and be extra mindful of packing out everything that was packed in. A portion of the coastline adjacent to Pohue Bay Beach has been purchased by the state for use as a marine preserve. 

With the path there so difficult, you might be wondering why even go? Well, this is one in which the destination may just be worth the arduous journey.

Pohue Bay Beach is simply breathtaking. Here, a small cove has been cut into the land and the result is a sandy beach and sandy-bottomed waters that are tranquil and turquoise. In other words, this is an ideal place to swim. The waves are not rough nor is the ground sharp or hard on your feet. It is easy to spend the entire day out simply enjoying the beauty and beautiful swimming Pohue Bay Beach has to offer. 

A few things to note, however, before you head out to Pohue Bay Beach. First, absolutely no dogs are allowed this way. The beach itself is technically a part of the aforementioned marine preserve and part of that preserve’s purpose is to provide a safe nesting area for Green and Hawksbill turtles. Dogs, small, medium, and large, pose a major threat to that and are banned from the area. 

Second, there are a few palm trees lining the very backside of the beach, but the amount of shade they provide is minimal. If you are going to be out here all day, we recommend bringing a tarp or similar shade apparatus. This will help prevent sun sickness, and otherwise excess sun and heat exposure due to the combination of the long unshaded hike and hanging out on the low-shaded beach. Two sides of the cove that makes the beach also are comprised solely of lava rocks which have a tendency to reflect back the heat and glares. 

Insider Tips:
-There are three grocery and market-style stories in Ocean View that are conveniently located all within blocks of each other and all should be a stop before you head down to Pohue Bay Beach. These stores are the Malama Market, Kahuku Country Market, and Ocean View Market.
-Remember, you are going to want plenty of water and sunscreen for that trek over the lava rocks. Dehydration is a serious concern for hikers out here.