One of the best ways to see Oahu is with a circle island tour. You’ll visit Sunset Beach as well as other top attractions including Diamond Head, the Dole Plantation, and Waimea Valley. If you’re looking for more adventure, view the beach from the air on a helicopter flight over the North Shore, or book an island tour that includes snorkeling or surf lessons.
Things to Know Before You Go
- A must-visit for sunset lovers, surfers, and beachcombers.
- Lifeguards are on duty daily during the summer months.
- Although the water looks calm in summer, currents can be strong so check in with a lifeguard to learn about the risks.
- Surfboard, snorkel gear, and kayak rentals are available near the beach.
- Restrooms and beach showers can be found at the park across the street from the beach.
How to Get There
Sunset Beach is located on the North Shore of Hawaii just outside of Haleiwa Town past the Waimea Bay, 40 miles (64 kilometers) north of downtown Waikiki. Ample parking is found across the street from the beach at the Sunset Beach Support Park. To get to the beach via public transportation, catch the Wahiawa-Circle Isle or the Kaneohe-Circle Isle bus from the Ala Moana Center in downtown Honolulu.
When to Get There
Oahu’s North Shore beaches are popular during the summer months, so visit early in the morning to avoid traffic and secure a prime spot on the beach. Big surf season runs from October–April and swimming is not considered safe during that time. Big wave surf competitions are typically held in November and December.
Other North Shore Attractions
Check out surfers shooting through the Banzai Pipeline at Ehukai Beach Park and don’t miss snorkeling the reef at Shark’s Cove, a lava-rock beach with abundant marine life and unique underwater rock formations. You can also hike to an impressive waterfall in Waimea Valley or browse the surf shops and galleries in Haleiwa Town.