Whether you’ve been to the Big Island before or it’s your first time, catching – or photographing – a flawless Hawaiian sunset is sure to be on your to do list. Luckily, we’ve got six of the best places to sit back, relax, maybe grab a glass of wine, and watch the sun slowly sink beyond the horizon.
#1. Hapuna Beach State Park
Often voted as one of the best beaches in the world, Hapuna Beach State Recreation Area is a half-mile stretch of white sand that runs nearly 200 feet wide during the summer months. With excellent water conditions and lifeguards on duty, it is the perfect beach to spend the day before settling in for a sunset picnic. The way the sun reflects off the water in this photograph by Sean Munson is truly magical, is it not?
#2. Mauna Kea
Towering over the Big Island at 13,000 feet above sea level is Mauna Kea, home to sweeping panoramic views as well as multiple observatories. The sunsets here are second to none, as evidenced by this photograph taken by Joe Parks over some of the summits’ telescopes. If you have the time, stay past sunset – the mountain’s elevation, and relative isolation from air pollution make the stargazing absolutely stellar.
#3. Kailua-Kona Bay
Rated as the third best place in Hawaii for sunset viewing by Hawaii Magazine, Kailua-Kona provides a glimpse into old Hawaiian history, as well as stellar sunsets made dramatic with the dark, volcanic rocks along the coast. This particular shot was taken by Steve Dunleavy at Honl’s Beach Park in Kailua-Kona.
#4. Fairmont Orchid
Located near Waikoloa Village and Pauoa Bay is the Fairmont Orchid, a 32-acre oceanfront five-star resort popular amongst honeymooners. The sunsets from the grounds are simply breathtaking. I mean, can you imagine anything more beautiful than this fiery sunset shot by Andy Beal, of Go Visit Hawaii?
#5. Puna Coast Trail
A difficult 20-mile trail located near Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, the Puna Coast Trail offers scenic views of the island, including some marvelous sunset views. Taken by Charles Chandler, this photograph showcases the vibrant colors that can be showcased in a Hawaiian sunset; the purple hues here are truly breathtaking.
#6. Anaeho’omalu Bay
When vacationing in the Waikoloa area, look no further than ‘Anaeho’omalu Bay for a beautiful Hawaiian sunset. Also known as A-bay, the pristine half-mile crescent sand beach is a popular spot for water sports, especially canoeing, as seen in this glistening sunset photograph by Al Case.
Which of these is your favorite spot to watch a Hawaiian sunset?