Oahu's Sunset Beach
If you ask anyone in Hawaii what one of the most infamous places on all the islands are, surely, in most everyone’s top 5 list would be the North Shore of Oahu. This place has created heroes and legends, year after year, for tackling some of the deadliest surf in the world. Right in the heart of it all is Sunset Beach. Sunset Beach is a magnet for locals and visitors alike for its raw beauty, surf, and welcoming atmosphere. There’s something here that all people cannot help but be drawn to. Weather you’re looking to surf, swim, snorkel, dive, fish, or just cruise to enjoy the epic view and atmosphere, there’s something here for everyone to enjoy. That’s why you’ll find people from all walks of life at this celebrated scene.
Sunset Beach was given its name for a good and obvious reason, simply because it is one of the most impressive places to watch the sun set in the world. The beach points westward where the sun sets over the ocean next to an excellent view of the Ko’olau mountain range and Ka’ena point. The trade winds push moisture westward over the mountains and allow for clouds to form over the ocean creating a wide range of impressive colors as the sun goes down. There is only one road that goes through the North Shore, which makes it hard to resist any temptation to drive past Sunset without stopping to enjoy the epic view. Locals, for good reason, usually avoid most of the “touristy” places in Hawaii. However, Sunset Beach, while being a main tourist destination on Oahu, also brings the locals here regularly because as they’ll all certainly tell you, “it never gets old”. Winter-time here is never lacking in the entertainment department. Sunset Beach is one of the most infamous surfing spots in the world and provides for great spectating. The winter surf challenges professional surfers from around the world to put everything on the line as their performance on the North Shore will make or break their career. Surfing at Sunset Beach is very unique because it is a “high performance” wave that can be surfed at 2 feet or 25 feet. It’s the second leg of the “Triple Crown of Surfing” so it naturally attracts the world’s best surfers, which provides for some of the world’s best entertainment. Even more impressive during latter months of the winter season is being able to watch countless Humpback Whales burst through the horizon. When the winter comes to a close, the summer doldrums allow for the mortals to enjoy the ocean as the once chaotic ocean becomes reminiscent of a lake. Swimming, fishing, diving, and snorkeling the clear blue water can keep beachgoers satiated for eternity. Regardless of season, it’s effortless to notice the happy and welcoming atmosphere this place provides, which makes it that much more special. The inviting environment of this place seems to come naturally. Visitors can walk down the bike bath, which runs right along the beach, being able to talk freely to most everyone you see while being received with the aloha spirit. Weather it’s Uncle Kawika, who’s family has lived here for countless generations or a tourist looking to experience what Hawaii is truly all about, the beauty of Sunset Beach seems to bring out the best in everyone. by Tony Pullella