Best Bodysurfing Beaches: Hawaii Edition

by Sarah Webb October 16, 2013

This is part two of our three-part series on the best bodysurfing beaches in the USA.  This time, we’re taking you on a tropical vacation off the mainland to the Hawaiian Islands. 


In ancient Hawaii, surfing was a way of life (learn about the history of surfing).  These five Hawaiian beaches are sure to give you that vibe!

Sandy Beach (Oahu, HI)

Located near the Halona Blowhole on the south shore of Oahu, this beach is a favorite of President Barack Obama’s.  While Sandy is a big hit with tourists, you won’t see many braving the waves.  The big, pounding shore break makes for some wicked rides, but is only for the more experienced bodysurfer.

Pipeline (Oahu, HI)

All the way on the other side of Oahu is the Banzai Pipeline, commonly known as just Pipeline.  The average wave height at this reef break is nine feet or higher.  The waves, coupled with sharp underwater lava spires make this one of the world’s deadliest waves.  A strong north swell will give you the gnarliest bodysurfing waves that won’t close out on you.  Be careful!

Waimea Bay (Oahu, HI)                       Waimea Bay best bodysurfing beaches.

While it includes Pipeline on its north shore, all of Waimea Bay is known as a surfing/bodysurfing hot spot.  During thefall and spring months, experienced watermen and women can take to the close-breaking waves.  In winter however, the waves hit upwards of 20 feet.  Even the best of surfers stay away from the pounding barrels and strong currents.

Pounders (Oahu, HI)

This is one of the more popular bodyboarding and bodysurfing beaches on Oahu, and is on the Brigham-Young University-Hawaii Campus.  The sandbars start shallow but quickly drop to an overhead depth, making for high surf and pounding waves all year. 

Point Panic (Oahu, HI)

It’s pretty obvious that we’re all about the island of Oahu!  Bodysurfing is the only legal sport in the waves at Point Panic, which has a reef break that generates both lefts and rights.  The name refers to the rocks and seawall (the point of panic) you will hit if you don’t ride carefully.  Look to visit in the summer months to get the best  waves.

Sarah Webb
Sarah Webb

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