The NOT Frightening Slaughterhouse Beach AKA Mokuleia Bay
Okay first off, I acknowledge that the name “Slaughterhouse” is frightening. A slaughterhouse is not something you associate with a beach worth relaxing on.
You need to get over any negative associations with the name because this small beach is actually really cool. It has great sand and a perfect escape from some of the crowded nearby beaches.
This mini beach is framed by lava cliff walls on either side. While it’s not quite as popular as some of the other area beaches it makes up for it by offering a more secluded intimate feel and when in the correct season offering some amazing snorkeling opportunities.
- Names: Slaughterhouse Beach, Mokuleia Bay, and sometimes it’s one of the few beaches called Secret Beach
- Best For: Escaping busier beaches and snorkeling (only in spring and summer)
- Facilities: None
- Parking: limited on side of street
- Cost: Free
- When I visited/crowds: Saturday at noon – not crowded
The Name Slaughterhouse
The name Slaughterhouse Beach comes from the fact that there used to be a slaughterhouse in the area. Thankfully it is long gone, and the name is not from the tendency of the beach waves to slaughter surfers.
Accessing The Beach
Slaughterhouse Beach is located on the northwestern tip of Maui. It is about a 20-minute drive from the Kaanapali resort area, and about an hour and a half from the airport.
A lot of people stay in the Kaanapali region, which is beautiful, but also comes with one of the highest density of tourists on the island.
To access the beach you need to go down a walkway that includes 100 steps. If you have mobility issues you probably want to skip this beach, though for most the biggest issue is overlooking the stairs down and not realizing beach access is available.
There is no true parking lot at this beach. There is a pull off on the side of the road that allows parking for a handful of cars. Additional people can park along the side of the road up or down from the beach access.
Given that this beach doesn’t get inundated with crowds it isn’t a complete nightmare to find a spot.
Slaughterhouse Beach Snorkeling – Is it any good?
When the water is calm, generally in the spring and summer, Slaughterhouse Beach snorkeling is top notch!
You often hear about snorkeling at the next door Honolua Bay, but many people don’t realize that the same conditions exist at Slaughterhouse Beach.
The lava rock cliffs framing each side of this beach contribute to the abundance of colorful marine life you can snorkel through. There is also a band of rocks crossing part of the bay that block out a lot of waves (outside of the winter).
No Facilities – not only is there not an official parking lot, but there are also no lifeguards, no restrooms, and no showers.
No Shops/Restaurants – the area is a little bit secluded. If you are looking for lunch spots that you can walk to this isn’t the area that offers that. Bring your own picnic lunch and spread out on the sand instead.
If you want to avoid the most intense beach crowds with a somewhat intimate vibe, then you need to consider Slaughterhouse Beach in Mokuleia Bay.
If the waves aren’t too intense then you might even be able to snorkel around the rock cliffs alone with the aquatic life.
What to Pack for Maui
- Quick Dry Travel Towel – This quick dry towel is amazing to travel with. It really will come in handy when you need extra room in your suitcase.
- Snorkeling gear – for obvious reasons.
- Hiking boots – I have two pairs of hiking boots that I love. My Columbia waterproof boots and my Salomon hiking boots. Highly recommend checking them both out!
- Sandals – LOVE these Teva’s! They are my new go to travel sandal. Shop my favorite Teva’s here. They are great to wear in the water snorkeling and also amazing for hiking in Hawaii.
- Dresses for Hawaii – Packing a few good dresses is essential for Hawaii. Dresses have become my go to on trips to help quickly put an outfit together. Revolve is one of my go to shops for beach dresses. ASOS also has great summer dresses.
- Shorts – Anyone who is traveling to Hawaii needs a good pair of shorts. Khakis are great for guys. For women, cute athletic shorts or denim shorts are perfect for a breezy summertime look. These Levi denim shorts are my current favorites! These high waisted athletic shorts have gone viral on instagram and for good reason, they are AMAZING.
- Sports bra – This SKIMS bra is the most comfortable sports bra you will ever wear! Trust me. I travel with 5 of them. Also, highly recommend checking out the SKIMS fits everybody bra is to die for as well.
- Agolde 90’s jeans – I actually can’t remember the last trip I have been on where I haven’t brought these Agolde jeans. I have them in multiple colors and sizes. Check out my full review here.
- Tank tops – Free people is my go to place to buy cute and affordable tank tops. I have this tighten up tank in almost every color.
- Hat – essential. Shop the newest hats at Nordstrom.
- Beach cover-up – Having at least one good cover-up is essential on any beach trip. I recommend ASOS, Nordstrom and Revolve as well.
- Tennis Shoes – I guess you could wear sandals hiking the trails in Maui but I would recommend tennis shoes or hiking boots. It can get narrow and slippery in parts. These New Balance shoes are amazing. Only problem is they sell out so fast! Blah. They look so cute with shorts too!
- Packing cubes – I always go to Urban Outfitters for my packing cubes. They have the cutest ones!
Planning a trip to Maui? Here are our best MAUI BLOG POSTS:
My husband and I have been to Maui a couple times and have written up more blog posts to help you plan your trip. These are my most popular blog posts and Hawaii travel guides to help you plan your trip. I hope it helps!
Maui general trip planning
- Guide to Visiting the Red Sand Beach– One of the best beaches in Maui!
- Hookipa Beach – (Best beach to see turtles in Maui)
- Makena Beach/Big Beach (One of my favorite beaches in Maui)
- Little Beach (also known as Oneloa Beach) – WARNING – nude beach.
- Oneuli Beach – Black sand beach
- Maluaka Beach – all around great beach
- Slaughterhouse Beach – (AKA Mokuleia Bay)
- La Perouse Beach (Bay) – great snorkeling tours here. Best if reached by boat.
Maui Hikes & Lookouts
- Sliding Sands Trail – (also known as Keonehe’ehe’e Trail) is one of the most unique hikes on Earth!
- Waihee Ridge Trail – Most Underrated Maui Hike
- Hoapili Trail – (Hike through lava fields in Maui)
- Dragon’s Teeth Hike
- Ohai Trail Loop – (Easy but Awesome)
- Leleiwi Overlook in Haleakala National Park – (Maui must see!)
- 6 Easily Accessible Maui Waterfalls – The Best and Most Easily Accessible Maui Waterfalls
- 7 Waterfalls in Maui That You Can Swim In – Must see!
- 13 WATERFALLS IN MAUI YOU CAN’T MISS