Has this happened to you? After a 5+ hour flight from the mainland, we arrived on Maui at only 9:30 a.m. We weren’t guaranteed check-in at our first accommodations until 3 p.m. And we were, to be certain, fully saddled with all of our gear and feeling more than a little punchy.
As I mentioned in a recent post on Kauai’s Kamalani Playground at Lydgate Park, a family sometimes needs a good place to decompress between a long flight and that hour when they can (finally) check in to their accommodations. I knew this trip would be no exception for us and packed prepared for a quick and easy change to beach mode with my sites set on the more elusive of Maui’s “Baby Beaches”–that of the north shore.
If you’ll soon be flying to Maui with a baby, toddler, or young kids (or without for that matter), take note: This sheltered beach, with ocean waves stopped short by a natural shelf, can be reached in under 10 minutes from Maui’s Pinkberry (OGG) airport. If you find it on the first try. There are no signs pointing you to this beach–or even hinting that you’re on the right path to one–which makes it all the more enticing, don’t you think?
My tips for finding Maui’s Baby Beach on the north shore:
- Follow the signs to Highway 36 and the “Hana Highway”
- Watch for the realty office at the corner of Nonohe Place (as in, “No, no,” he said, arguing it had to be the next turn)
- Turn left onto Nonohe Place, then follow to the right, and follow your instincts there
- When the road suddenly turns to red dirt and ends by the ocean, you’re on the west end of the beach
- Park, and don’t advertise you have a full trunk when leaving your car (shuffle everything you can at the airport first). We lucked out and got this front row space where we could see our car from the beach.
- For best results, look at this satellite map to see where you are going (stay right, drive north, and you’ll continue to where the sand begins just above the west end of the golf course).
Hints: If you see the golf course from the highway or the country club, turn around, you’ve gone too far. If you find yourself at Baldwin Park, turn around, but use the pit toilets first if you need to!
Unlike some other beaches tucked in along this stretch as you venture toward the “Road to Hana,” which do have signs pointing you to them, there are no lifeguards here. Also, no showers. And no toilets. Keep the last point in mind before setting out from the airport in your rental car. 😉
Still, this north shore “Baby Beach” is stunning, as you can see. And a great payoff for the whole family after a pre-dawn departure from home and several hours of airplane time. Oh, one more thing: YES, you can expect to see plenty of babies, toddlers, and kids of all ages romping at this beach.
Pack: Sun block, a spare towel from home, full water bottles, snacks.
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