Laniakea Beach

Laniakea Beach, Oahu

Laniakea Beach (view panorama) on Oahu's North Shore is also known as Turtle Beach. The main attraction here is the green sea turtles who often times can be seen on the beach basking in the sun. On other Oahu beaches, you're lucky if you can spot one of these amazing animals in the ocean, sticking her head out of the water.

But on Laniakea Beach, the turtles come out of the water and don't seem to mind the people who are snapping pictures of them. In recent years the beach has become more crowded. Many circle island tour buses stop here on their way to other attractions. So it can get busy here. The parking area is across the beach on the other side of the highway and there is no traffic light, so this often times causes a traffic jam because many people are crossing the highway here.

The Hawaiian honu (green sea turtle) enjoys full protection under the federal Endangered Species Act and under Hawaii state law. It is illegal to chase, hunt, handle, injure or harass them in any way. To make sure that the turtles are not bothered, there are volunteers on Laniakea Beach who inform visitors about the turtles and use a red rope to mark the “no-go” zones. Also, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has put up informational signs.

The beach itself is rather small and has a rocky shelf. The turtles enjoy eating the seaweed that grows on it and on the surrounding rocks. When the surf is up, a strong rip current forms in the wide channel on the west side of the beach. Surfers use this beach to get to the offshore surf spots named Laniakea, Himalayas and Hultin's.

Unfortunately, Laniakea Beach made tragic headlines in July 2008 when a large turtle named “Honey Girl” was found slaughtered on the beach one morning. She had last been seen resting on the beach under a full moon the evening before. Honey Girl was one of Laniakea's 24 resident turtles and the largest adult female turtle, weighing about 250 pounds. She was about 35-40 years old.

Laniakea Beach Overview

  • Also known as Turtle Beach
  • Watch huge Hawaiian green sea turtles resting on the beach
  • Keep a good distance from the turtles to not disturb them

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Reviews and Comments:
Be careful, I picked up some mighty mean infections swimming at laniakea. Pain, fever, all week long, evidently from the runoff at the base of the Stream
Kathleen A Brosnahan, Fri Jan 15, 2021
As a local here I will share with everyone reading this something tour companies wont tell you. The traffic here sucks, expect to sit in your car for about 60 minutes to travel 15 miles. More importantly as more and more tourists come to visit the added foot and vehicle traffic is wearing down our roads faster and faster. If you visit you'll discover the roads in the north shore are already terrible and full of potholes and cracks the added traffic is causing the roads to erode into the sea faster too. Additionally the amount of people constantly walking on the reef and getting suntan and sunscreen lotions in the water is making the water murky and have a slightly oily film to it which is killing the reef and causing less and less fish to go to parts of the beach and its changing the eco system that and most importantly not as many turtles are coming around to turtle beach.
All this plus the aforementioned traffic is causing more and more locals to get frustrated and I have personally witnessed locals being hostile to visitors not to mention all the food trucks and illegal AirBnB that are popping up as well.
Daniel, Mon Dec 31, 2018
It was amazing to be in the water with the Sea Turtles. The volunteers were very helpful, answering everyone’s questions. Will DEFINITELY be back. AWESOME🐢🐢🐢🐢🐢🐢🐢
Mikey, Thu Jan 04, 2018
saw so many turtles, weathering permitting you can even go in the water and swim amongst them.
if you want to see sea turtles up close its a must! just please remember don't touch them
jbox, Wed Jan 04, 2017