Cove Beach Park

Cove Beach Park – One of South Maui’s Go-to Places to Learn Surfing
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

Cove Beach Park (or “the Cove”) is best known as one of South Maui’s go-to surf spots. That’s not on account of super-elite waves, but rather the year-round friendly ones and the well-established surf lessons that go down here. If you aren’t looking to learn how to surf, there’s less reason to specifically seek this small park out—though it’s pleasant enough watching wave-riders in the morning or a Pacific sunset in the evening.

- The HawaiianIslands.com Local Expert Team

Lying immediately south of well-developed Kalama Beach, Cove Beach Park is higher-profile than its small size would suggest. That’s on account of its reputation as a place to learn how to surf. Taking one of the lessons on offer here just about daily is the main attraction here.

The waves at “the Cove” are reliable—and reliably beginner-friendly. Combine those regular, gentle breakers with Cove Beach Park’s location in the condo- and resort-dense Kihei strip, and it’s no surprise surf schools find steady operation here. (There can be decent waves in the vicinity to keep somewhat more experienced surfers interested, though obviously nothing compared to Maui’s world-class breaks.)

There is a little sand beach here as well, though swimming isn’t really first-rate. The waters here, not uncommonly, are murky and seaweed-ridden, although not so chronically as just north up the Kihei shore. Keep an eye out for any Brown Water Advisories pertaining to the area, and just generally assess the water quality before taking a dip. 

That said, besides the surfing, many boogie-boards and paddleboard at Cove Beach Park. So it can be a pretty crowded affair.

A small parking lot serves Cove Beach Park, with additional street parking along South Kihei Road. You can also use the larger Kalama Beach lot for access. 

Kalama Beach also comes stocked with facilities and amenities Cove Park beachgoers can use, including restrooms, showers, picnic pavilions, and tables, a playground, tennis/volleyball/basketball courts, and a ball field.

You don’t need to get in the water yourself to find some enjoyment at Cove Beach Park. Watching the surfers in action, for instance, is a nice way to ease your way into the day. And the sunsets, as you’d expect along South Maui’s western coastline, are lovely.

Besides ready access to the Kalama Beach facilities, you’ll also find yourself within easy walking distance of Kihei’s numerous eateries, cafes, and shops when visiting Cove Beach Park. 

Not one of Maui’s outstanding beachfront or swimming spots, Cove Beach Park nonetheless is noteworthy for its plentiful opportunities to learn the ins and outs of a surfboard. Given its proximity to Kihei-area accommodations and amenities, too, it’s a natural choice for taking a waterfront break, though don’t expect peace and tranquility.

Insider Tips:
-The wind picks up along the Kihei shore in the afternoon. Mornings, though, tend to be nice and calm: the best time to visit the Cove.
-If you do come to Cove Beach Park hoping to swim and find the water a bit on the brownish side, don’t fret too much. Going southward just short ways—to expansive Kamaole Beach, say, or Keawakapu south of that—usually gets you to crystal-clear water in a jiffy.