Koki Beach is a unique red sand beach along the road to Hana. This beach is a popular tourist spot for many reasons. Near the parking area is a world-famous Huli-Huli Chicken vendor! The Hawaiian style BBQ chicken is a favorite among locals and tourists alike. There is a beautiful place to tan and have a picnic at the park located at Koki Beach. The color of this beach comes from the cinder cone hill Ka Iwi o Pele, which means “bones of Pele” in Hawaiian. According to Hawaiian legend, Koki Beach was the site where Pele fought her older sister Namakaokaha’i the goddess of the ocean. The bones of the defeated Pele were laid to rest along the shoreline and her spirit traveled to the Big Island Volcano of Kilauea.
Word of Caution
Koki Beach is known for quickly changing water conditions which provide great surfing in the summer and risky surfing during the winter months. This famous surf break along the road to Hana is not the best for swimming any time of the year. The water conditions change quickly, the beach lacks lifeguards, there are also riptides and high waves that arrive without any warning. Even experienced surfers are recommended to use caution. This is especially true during the winter months. Due to the location of Koki Beach on the easterly side of the island, the waves erode the beach annually. This process removes most of the sand leaving boulders, rocks, and cinder.
Speaking of cinder… The cinder hill from which the legend and topography come from is unstable. The hill breaks off into the ocean without notice. To be careful if you venture near it, the loose volcanic material can be less firm than it appears.
Enjoy and Let Enjoy
Before you leave this amazing and scenic natural landscape, remember that the beauty of this magnificent beach is very fragile. Treat it with respect it deserves. Help preserve this rare eco-system by remembering to remove anything that you brought with you. It is important to be conscientious and maintain the magic you’ve experienced here. Help future visitors experience the same sense of awe and wonder that you have just enjoyed.