Ala Moana Beach Park In Best U.S. City Parks | Hawaii's Gem

Ala Moana Beach Park In Best U.S. City Parks | Hawaii’s Gem

Ala Moana Regional Park, located at the entrance to Waikiki in Honolulu, has been a personal Beat of Hawaii favorite for decades. We’re not alone in thinking this, either. Ala Moana has 4 million visitors annually and now USAToday has chosen it as one of the Best City Parks in the USA for 2024. See the entire list below.

The stunning 100-acre green park and blue water expanse offer locals and Hawaii visitors a serene escape from the urban hustle directly across from Ala Moana Shopping Center. Its unique combination of natural beauty fronting the Pacific Ocean and numerous recreational amenities in a tropical Hawaiian setting stands out.

View of Ala Moana Regional Park from the marina. Magic Island on the left, beach in the center, and park on the right.

1. Location and accessibility.

Ala Moana Beach Park is situated just a stone’s throw from downtown Honolulu and on the border of Waikiki Beach, which starts just across the Ala Wai Canal. It is easily accessible for all. Its proximity to the Ala Moana Shopping Center enhances its appeal, providing easy access and daytime parking for the beach, as well as a myriad of dining and shopping options before or after the beach.

Ala Moana Beach park

2. Features of Ala Moana Regional Park .

The park has an extremely long and broad stretch of sandy beach. It is known for its gentle waves and shallow water, making it ideal for swimmers, waders, and stand-up paddlers. Not to mention the turtles we see swimming by. The family and kid-friendly beach is protected by a fringing reef, which ensures the water’s calm and makes it accessible year-round.

3. Park amenities.

Ala Moana Regional Park is equipped with a wide range of amenities, including restrooms and showers, and even has a music pavilion and a jogging path. In addition to swimming here, we also like the walk around Magic Island to take in the views and watch outrigger canoe teams practice.

4. Beach safety and park maintenance.

The park is well-maintained by the City and County of Honolulu, and we generally find the facilities clean and the situation safe for visitors. Lifeguards are on duty from 9-5:30 daily, providing extra safety for water activities.

5. Natural beauty at Ala Moana Beach Park.

The park has stunning views of Diamond Head and the Pacific Ocean. It’s a picturesque spot for photography and sunset viewing. So much so, that it is also a very popular wedding venue both locally as well for mainland and foreign visitors. Its lush green areas and trees provide a cooling canopy to hide from the sun, which comes as a breath of fresh air amidst the urban Honolulu environment.

6. Accessibility and parking.

The park features good accessibility for people with disabilities. There is ample free parking (but no longer overnight), accessible walkways, and other facilities to ensure everyone can enjoy what Ala Moana offers. While parking is free, it is not always easy to find on weekends. Currently, there are 950 parking stalls within the park.

7. A visitor experience we always enjoy.

Visitors to Ala Moana Beach Park, even us visiting from Kauai, love the well-organized park and facilities. The park’s design and layout facilitate a smooth flow of people and activities, enhancing the overall visitor experience. That’s true even in summer and on weekends when the park can become very crowded. Even then, we can’t say we’ve ever felt too crowded here in the ocean. It can be busy around Lifeguard Tower 1E, close to Magic Island, but the crowds disappear as we swim down the beach.

Top 10 best city parks.

  • Gathering Place, Tulsa, Oklahoma
  • Golden Gate Park, San Francisco
  • Forest Park, St. Louis, Missouri
  • Wildwood Preserve Metropark, Toledo, Ohio
  • Klyde Warren Park, Dallas, Texas
  • Ala Moana Regional Park, Honolulu, Hawaii
  • Railroad Park, Birmingham, Alabama
  • Bruce Park, Greenwich, Connecticut
  • Falls Park on the Reedy, Greenville, South Carolina
  • Loring Park, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Ala Moana is someplace we always escape to in Honolulu, and it always pleases. What are your favorite spots at Ala Moana Regional Park?

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