Papakolea Green Sand Beach is a 5.4 mile lightly trafficked out and back trail located near Naalehu, Hawaii that offers scenic views. The trail is rated as moderate and primarily used for hiking, birding, and off road driving. Dogs are also able to use this trail.
off road driving
One of the only true Green Sand Beaches in the world! This is a must see. The hike is easy enough, just bring sunblock and water, there are no facilities nearby. Located in a bay cut by the ocean into a side of Puu Mahana, the green sand is created by a common silicate deposit of Big Island lava called Olivine. You can hitch a ride from the parking area, but why miss the raging ocean waves uninterrupted from Antarctica?! Walk the rough rocky terrain and enjoy the sights and sounds!
Not overly difficult, it's basically a scenic walk along the coastline with a little bit of uneven footing. It is very hot though, so water is a must. But all that effort is worth it because you can reward yourself with a nice dip in the ocean once you finally reach the Green Sand Beach. I also highly recommend checking out the cliff jumping at South Point since it is so close by. For more on my adventure here, check out my blog post:
Great short hike. About 5.5 miles total. The beach is very cool. The hike is very windy and there is a lot of dust blowing in your face. Consider that when you pack your water - take plenty. The beach is nice to swim at but be careful of the rip current. I am an experienced swimmer and would say the rip was moderate on the day I went. Be cautious allowing your small kids to get in too deep. Take towels and extra socks with you. The sand really is a dark green/brown color. Very cool. At the trail head you can park and hike or take a "shuttle" which is gonna be a beat up old pickup or something like that. No idea what it costs. You're probably here on vacation and don't have room to pack hiking boots. If you can, definitely bring some. The trail isn't really much of a trail. They are more dirt vehicular roads/trails than hiking trails. There are a bunch of loose lava rocks lying around so a stiff sole on a hiking boot would be ideal. Tennis/running shoes were sufficient for me. Don't attempt this hike on flip flops.
This hike was highly recommended to me. I did it on a cloudy day and was thankful for that. You would need a lot of water on a sunny hot day. When I got to the beach it was a nice site but nothing spectacular as I was expecting. The hike is easy along the ocean, easy to find as long as you keep the ocean on your right, mostly fit with rolling hills. Keep your expectations in check so you are not disappointed when you reach the beach. All in all a decent hike
Nice hike but very uneven. Sunscreen and water is a must as it can get quite hot. The beach itself is part of a small alcove and if you decide to go for a swim (which we did) you have to climb down if you feel adventurous ;). Not that bad really and it is nice and refreshing after a long hike. If you can't be bothered walking back, the locals can drive you back for a fee on the back of a ute/truck (now that's adventurous as the people on there were bouncing quite a bit). We did walk back though as we felt the hike wouldn't be properly completed.
We actually started at the southernmost point by mistake, however on the way we found some beautiful light green sand in some areas. This area is pretty sunny and dry so come prepared. The beach itself is a pretty neat nook of the big island but i was disappointed by the dark green sand (almost looks like mud). Although it gets rocky at some parts it is fairly easy with no climbing required. Definitely do this hike if able and visiting.
when i went the sand wasn't the dark green but if you pick up the sand you'll see little green rocks.its a 2 mile hike one way and many hill that go up and down.locals do offer to give you a ride for at most 20$ a person.but if you not down for the walk or to pay.if you drove a jeep or a truck I'm sure you can make it just have a look out.some drops look safe other you can't tell till your stuck definitely DEFINITELY SOMETHING YOU'LL REMEMBER