Big Island

Hiking to Big Island’s Halape Beach

The best way to describe Ka’u is wide and wild. It is the largest of the five districts on the Big Island of Hawaii. From the mountains above Wai’ōhinu to the black sand beaches of Punalu’u, it’s the perfect place to get away from the hustle and bustle of daily life.

Epic sunset at Halape in Hawaii Volcano National Park

Ka’u has some of the most affordable homes and land in the state of Hawaii. Ka’u is also home to the Hawaii Volcano National Park, an over 600,000 acre parcel of land under protection from the federal Government. In the park, along the coast, is where you will find Halape.

Sweet Halape is a true slice of paradise

Halape: A Hidden Gem on the Ka’u Coast

Halape is a white sand beach located along the Ka’u Coast in the Hawaii Volcano National Park. It’s only reached by boat or a number of trails starting along the chain of Craters Road. Backpacking is one of my many passions (“If I cant drive to it, I’m walking!”).

I have to say the ‘Keauhou’ trail is the easiest. It’s an almost nine-mile journey down a gentle slope from approx. 3,000 ft. to sea level. You will travel through many lava flows dating from ancient to more modern. The trail can be down right brutal, as there are very little to no places to seek refuge from the hot Ka’u sun. It’s more of the ‘destination’ and not the ‘journey’ on this hike.

Once you finally reach Halape all the trail pain is quickly forgotten. The beach is absolutely gorgeous and there is also a Queens bath (fresh water pond), if you know where to look. The park allows a total of 16 campers on the beach, permits can be obtained at the Back Country office in the Volcano Park. The campsites are dotted along the coast, some more private than others, on a first come first serve basis.

Just a short walk up the coast you will reach Halape Iki (Little Halape), another stunning location, that looks like a scene off of Gilligan’s Island. The beach looked completely manicured and cared for, though there was no one around.

Stunning Halape Iki and some young green coconuts I found

The hike out is a little tough, as you’re gradually making your way from sea level back to the vehicle at 3,000 ft. elevation. Make sure to pack lots of water. There is no place to get water anywhere along the trail. Just keep your head down and march, you’ll be home before you know it and you’ll already want to go back!

Homes For Sale in the Ka’u/Volcano Area

There are a number of great homes and properties for sale in the Ka’u/Volcano area. Prices for a home in the Ka’u area range from approximately $25K up to $14,500,000. Although, you can own a 4 bedroom/2.5 bath home on an acre with an ocean view like this one (MLS# 256473). Come live your Hawaii Life!

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Heidi White

November 17, 2012

Great Hike Jene! My family has done it with the aid of a pack horse, then we could bring more supply’s for a longer stay. One really wants to stay longer when you get there. I look forward to doing it again. I better start training though. A real paradise for sure! But not for the weak.

Heidi White

November 17, 2012

Great Hike Jene! My family has done it with the aid of a pack horse, then we could bring more supply’s for a longer stay. One really wants to stay longer when you get there. I look forward to doing it again. I better start training though. A real paradise for sure! But not for the weak.

annie

November 18, 2012

Aloha Jene’! Wow…mahalo for sharing this story about your hikes. AND your expertise for your neck of the woods! I’d like to ask Heidi how she lined up that pack horse…cool!

annie

November 18, 2012

Aloha Jene’! Wow…mahalo for sharing this story about your hikes. AND your expertise for your neck of the woods! I’d like to ask Heidi how she lined up that pack horse…cool!

Frank Godek

May 29, 2018

I love Halape! Our Boy Scout Troop hiked the Hilina Pali trail down to Halape about 10 years or so ago. It was quite the hike! Going out we followed the beach until we go to Chain of Craters Road. I’m sure that was a lot easier than hiking back up! In any case, it was certainly beautiful. I’m sure the area is probably off limits right now but I hope that it doesn’t get ruined by the current volcanic flow.

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