Waianae Harbor

by Justin

Waianae Harbor is a popular local spot for fishing. This is also the launching point for many scuba and fishing expeditions. The harbor is not a large harbor, compared to those near to Honolulu. This allows for ample parking and less chances of the unwanted passerby getting into the frame of your photograph. This harbor is protected by a nearly 15 foor rock wall, that keeps the waters in the harbor calm and serene. The rock wall is also used by fisherman as a launching point for their casts. To the outskirts of the harbor, towards the west and east are many locations where the sharp, jagged rocks of the west side, meet the Pacific Ocean. All of these items put together, make for a beautiful photographic location with many opportunities for a stupendous picture. Some of these opportunities are discussed below.

The Waianae Harbor is a beautiful and quaint harbor, with 5 rows of boats and various quay walls and jetties. The rows of boats, bring about a common and visually pleasing photographic opportunity, which is patterns. Always look for patterns, when searching for a photographic subject. In some locations, finding patterns may be difficult especially in natural conditions. But in man-made conditions, patterns should be prevalent and is such the case in this harbor.

Boats and Patterns

The Waianae Harbor is a beautiful and quaint harbor, with 5 rows of boats and various quay walls and jetties. The rows of boats, bring about a common and visually pleasing photographic opportunity, which is patterns. Always look for patterns, when searching for a photographic subject. In some locations, finding patterns may be difficult especially in natural conditions. But in man-made conditions, patterns should be prevalent and is such the case in this harbor.

Photographing patterns is comprised of two distinct methods, first allowing the pattern to fill the entire frame. This allows the main focus of the photograph to be the pattern. The second method is to break the pattern, for this method you can fill the entire frame with the pattern but incorporate an anomaly, like a missing boat. Another technique with the rows of boats is to direct the viewer's eye throughout the photograph. Start from a strong foreground and follow through the photograph with the rows of boats and finally end at a sunset or a goregous blue sky.

Huge Sea Wall and Rocks

The Waianae Harbor is protected by a huge nearly 15 foot rock wall. This wall provides a prime location for photographers to get a photograph looking down into the harbor or to photograph fisherman in action. Another available photograph is to use the leading line of the photograph to direct the viewer through your photograph. Make sure to couple this line with a strong background or subject. The rock wall can take your viewer from the rock wall and through to the background of the waianae coast and the waianae mountains or you can choose to take them directly out to sea.

Throughout this harbor, you will find many locations where you can jump down to sea level via the sea rocks. These rocks are sharp and slippery so be careful. But from this vantage point you can get find unique foreground to incorporate into your photograph.

Best Time to Shoot

The best time to shoot is at sunset and the hour after sunset. There should be a lot of parking spots available during this time.

Local Tips

Please do not leave valuables in your car. Be mindful of the homeless that live within walking distance.

How do I get there?

Parking Address: 59-727 Kamehameha Hwy, Haleiwa, HI 96712

From the airport:

  • Head West on the H1 for 17.2 miles.
  • You will reach the end of the highway, which will turn into Farrington Highway
  • Head on Farrington Highway for 11.4 miles.
  • Turn left at the Waianae Harbor
  • Parking = Free!
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