Located just north of Hapuna Beach in North Kohala, along the coast next to the Mauna Kea Golf Course, is Mauna Kea Beach, locally known as Kaunaoa Beach. It sits right in front of the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel which is how it got its newer nickname.
Mauna Kea Beach is another sliver of beautiful, sun-bleached sand cuddled by the sapphire blue of the Pacific. It's a great beach for beginner snorkelers, because the sand bar is extensive and the water is not too deep. The best places to see fish is over the reef sections to the north and south of the beach when the waters are calm.
There have been sightings of Manta Rays here. Who knows at Mauna Kea Beach ... you might get lucky enough to see one up close. Parking is limited and it is best to get there before mid-morning to ensure you get one of the few spots provided by the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel. When you reach the gate for the hotel the attendant will issue you a pass for parking if spaces are still available.