Waimea Bay

by Justin

Waimea Bay is located in Haleiwa on the North Shore of O‘ahu. This bay is a popular destiantion for locals and visitors to Hawai‘i . During the winter time, major surf comeptitions are held here for all to see. During the other seasons, the waves here are fairly tame, but always listen to the lifeguards to ensure a safe trip to this beautiful beach. Waimea Bay has many photographic opportunities like long sandy beaches, a large rock used for jumping into the ocean, a spot to overlook the entire bay and beautiful sunsets.

During the spring, summer and fall months, the bay is relatively calm and is an excellent beach to snorkel and swim. Many people come here to enjoy jumping off the rock at the south side of the bay. Countless people will line up and climb the 20+ foot rock and jump into the ocean. This rock makes for an excellent photography location, where you can get action shots of your friends and family jumping into the ocean. Remember to turn up your ISO and increase your aperture size (turn down your F-stop) in order to ensure a fast shutter speed, to capture a razor sharp photograph. It is important to use people in this photograph, because it will allow your viewer to gain a sense for the size of the rock and this leap.

The Long Sandy Beach and the Look-Out

The long sandy beaches at Waimea Bay make for an excellent foreground for your photographs. The issue with the beach is trying to find a strong subject to complete the photorgaph. The jumping rock and surfers make for excellent subjects. Or you can take a walk down to the south side of the beach and you will find interesting rock features. Towards the north side are more rock features and the mouth of the Waimea River.

As you leave the bay, I would recommend that you stop at the top, south side of the bay to enjoy a gorgeous view of the Waimea Bay. I especially like this view at sunset, see below for best time to shoot.

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

How do I get there?

Parking Address: 61-031 Kamehameha Hwy, Haleiwa, HI 96712

From the airport:

  • Head west on the H1 for 8 miles
  • Take the H2 merge towards Mililani and Wahiawa.
  • Follow te H2 for 8 miles.
  • Take exit 8 toward Wahiawa. You will go through Wahiawa town.
  • The road through this town is called Kamehameha Highway (HI-99) for 8.5 miles.
  • Continue onto HI-83 for 5.2 miles until you see the Waimea Bay Beach Parking lot on the left.
  • Parking = Free!