About Pepeekeo Sugar Mill Shoreline Access on Hilo & East Island, Hawaii
This is a little-known shoreline access near the old Pepeekeo Sugar Mill north of Hilo. It doesn’t have a sandy beach and the trail is not for the faint of heart, but it is open to the public, and if you go, you’ll probably have this spot all to yourself.
The trail down the hill from the trailhead is very steep and that’s an understatement. There are sections where you’ll have to hold onto vegetation and lower yourself without seeing what’s below. And it’s easy to slip as this area is frequently wet. We only suggest going when the trails are dry and if you are comfortable climbing down (and back up) such a steep grade. On the way down you’ll pass an old structure left over from the sugar mill days and a concrete wall with unique spray paint art.
The beach is small and made up of rocks so you shouldn’t go there to sunbathe. On both sides of the beach there are old structures made of concrete and mortared rock that have survived the surf. Since swimming is not smart here, the main users are probably hardy fishermen.
To get to this beach access, drive north from Hilo on the Hawaii Belt Road (Hwy 19) to just past the town of Pepeekeo where you’ll find Sugar Mill Road which is marked with a huge green gear from the old mill. Turn right there and follow it to the end at about 1.4 miles from the highway. On the way you’ll pass the old Pepeekeo Sugar Company building from 1920. At the trailhead there’s a white and blue “Shoreline Public Access” sign pointing the way. Access hours are 6am to 6pm daily.
The private Pepe’ekeo Point luxury real estate development is north of the trailhead parking area and Honua Ola Bioenergy is to the south.
If this beach access sounds too difficult or unappealing, then head over to Kolekole Beach Park which has a similar but larger beach and a much easier access.
- Sugar Mill Rd & Beach Rd
Pepeekeo, HI 96783
- Other Names
- Pepeekeo Point, Pepe'ekeo Sugar Mill
- Pet Details
- Dogs not advised due to extremely steep access
- Free parking
- Beach Exploration
- Old Structures
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