Pohoiki Black Sand Beach on the East Side of the Big Island

Pohoiki Black Sand Beach on the East Side of the Big Island

Photo Courtesy of Dmitri Kotechetov on iStock

This is a newly formed black sand beach from the 2018 eruption and lava flow that covered some of the favorite nearby beaches. The nearby flow is now cooled, but still evident, and is responsible for the formation of the growing black sand beach called Pohoiki. You can get up close and personal with the cooled lava flow nearby – it’s quite a sight. The beach is part of Isaac Hale Beach Park.

Water Sports

Swimming can be quite treacherous here and you’ll often see surfers enjoying the large waves. There are 4 thermal pools that were also created as a result of the lava flow. Be advised that these pools are not treated in any way, so use discretion when entering and it is advised to not go in if you have any cuts on your skin. There are lifeguards on duty, so be sure to check with them if you want to get in the ocean.


There are trees at Pohoiki Black Sand Beach, but since the black sand beach is newly formed, there is no shade on the beach, and all that black sand absorbs heat, so use caution when walking barefoot.


There is no food or drinks available at the park, so be sure to pack a picnic and lots of water. 

Directions and Parking

Directions and Parking: Follow Hwy 130 to the end, and turn onto Hwy 137. It ends at Pohoiki Beach. There is ample parking and portable toilets. Bring your own water for drinking and rinsing. 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

What's in a Name

What’s in a Name: The literal definition of Pohoiki Black Sand Beach is “small hollow”, conceivably named for the small pools that house warm springs.

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