There are many beautiful beach locations in South Maui so it’s one of those things where you really can’t go wrong. Some couples want a place with both an ocean view but also some greenery for the background. Others want to be as secluded as possible or at least not crowded with people and frisbees flying overhead during their ceremony. Since all beaches in Hawaii are public there aren’t any truly private beaches but some tend to be less crowded than others.
Here are some of my favorite places for a beach wedding ceremony in South Maui (Kihei, Wailea,Makena). They are good for elopements and small weddings (less than 20* in the group). Larger weddings are probably better with a venue or estate that is located on a beach or overlooking the ocean. A list of venues for larger weddings is below.
Kamaole III overlook, Kihei
Located along the walking trail just south of the grassy area of Kamaole III Beach Park (aka Kam III) there are 3 overlook spots that are lovely for afternoon and sunset weddings. These areas have a lovely view of the ocean and tend to be low on foot traffic. Several of the overlooks have benches and have unobstructed views of the ocean and sunset. Not much chance of a Frisbee flying over or even swimmers in the background. Parking, beach showers, bathrooms are available.
Palauea Beach (White Rock), Wailea
I love this location but the parking is limited as there is no lot and you have to pull off the road to park and walk a short path to get to the beach. There are no showers or bathrooms here, but there is lovely greenery that makes a nice backdrop for photos and an unobstructed view of the ocean.
La Perouse Bay / Keoneʻoʻio Bay
Located at the end of Makena Alanui Road it’s quite a drive out here but it’s one of my favorite places on the island for it’s raw, wild natural beauty. It’s as far south as you can drive while on the makai side (ocean side). La Perouse is literally the newest part of the island having been formed from the most recent eruption of the Haleakala volcano (about 220+ yrs ago). Even if this isn’t your perfect wedding spot I do encourage you to check out the 2-3 hour hike along the shoreline to the light house at the end. It’s only technically a lighthouse not the kind in picture books.
There are small sandy beach areas amongst the lava rock and coral shoreline and keawe (kay-ah-vay) trees are a plenty. Wear sturdy shoes as it’s very rocky here and those keawe trees have thorns that will go through pretty much everything. While there are hikers and people fishing it’s never what you would call crowded, especially on a weekday.
Here are some photos of a wedding I officiated at La Perouse in June of 2017.
More on La Perouse: Hawaii-Guide
*Ocean and Beach Side Wedding Venues
Unfortunately you are not to have more than 20 people for a beach wedding so if you have a large group, consider a venue that’s near or overlooking the ocean. Here are some of my favorites in South Maui:
Kukahiko Estate http://www.makenaweddings.com/Kukahiko-Estate/index.htm
Ponomakena Sanctuary https://www.ponomakena.com/
Or have your wedding ON the ocean and book a sailboat wedding & reception. I like Trilogy for weddings but there are many others who will host your wedding aboard one of their ships.
Sail Trilogy Weddings https://sailtrilogyweddings.com/