Ala Moana Beach Park is a popular ocean destination for visitors seeking the clear turquoise waters of the Pacific. This nearly half-mile stretch of beautiful white sand offers something for everyone, from surfing, paddle boarding, wading, and snorkeling, to tennis, sunbathing, and picnics. Ala Moana Beach lies across the road from the famed shopping center with the same name, and it is adjacent to Magic Island. This classic and picturesque beach is a favorite among visitors and locals alike, and it is large enough to accommodate large groups as well. The offshore reef protects the beach from much wave action, so the shallow waters are generally calm.
Back before the development of Waikīkī and downtown Honolulu, most of the land surrounding the Ala Moana Beach Park was swamp land. A channel was dredged off the coast in the mid-1990s, connecting the Ala Wai boat harbor with Kewalo Basin. The coral rubble and sand that was dredged from the channel was used to form the base of the beach that is well known today. The park has had numerous renovations, adding to it public restrooms, showers, concession stands, tennis courts, an amphitheater, and picnic areas. Lifeguards are stationed daily at the beach, which makes it ideal for families with children. Just offshore are surf breaks known as Big Rights, Big Lefts, and Concessions. Large banyan trees and palm trees line the park and make picnics or barbecues a delight.
Be sure to catch a glimpse of the famous Lantern Floating Ceremony, which takes place every Memorial Day at the park. Here, more than 6,000 floating lanterns are released at sunset and make a truly remarkable sight, drawing over 50,000 visitors from all around the world to attend!