Just west of Kahuku Point, the most northern tip of Oahu is Kawela (Turtle) Beach. Inside the bay is a quiet secluded beach that offers a great getaway, or a private walk along the beach. This is a very secluded beach, a good place to get away from the crowd at surrounding beaches. It is a narrow sliver of sand backed with ironwood trees and coconut palms that provide plenty of shade and concealment from would be sightseers on the Hwy above. The water at Kawela (Turtle) Beach not always the best for snorkeling. It has a rocky ocean bottom but the waters tend to get murky.
However, swimming at Kawela Bay can be quite enjoyable. The mouth of the bay has a shape and position that provides an extremely sheltered lagoon. There are never any currents or surge from the waves so the water remains very calm. There are lots of “honu” or sea turtle sightings, so much so that this beach is often mistaken for the more renowned “turtle beach” at Laniakea Beach, closer to Haleiwa.
Outside of Kawela (Turtle) Beach are some expert surf sites and the small islet of Kukaimanini. There are no facilities and no lifeguards. Access is found across the street from the Kahuku Land Farms fruit and vegetable stands about one mile west of the famous Turtle Bay Resort. You can park right off the road and find the trailhead by the fence. It is OK to ignore the “no trespassing” sign just this once.