Oahu's North Shore
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The North Shore, known as the surfing capital of the world, is the coastal region of North Oahu that stretches from Kahuku to Kaena Point. During the winter months this shoreline produces the most consistently spectacular waves in the world. These huge waves, which often reach up to 30 feet, are produced by giant swells generated in the north Pacific, and trek across the ocean to batter the area’s shoreline.
Wave riders and spectators from around the world gather here from November to February, December being the peak period. There are a number of popular surf breaks lining the coast, the most famous being the Sunset Beach area, the Bonzai Pipeline and Waimea Bay.
Sunset Beach is known for its spectacular and dangerous waves with the crests reaching a height of 15 to 30 feet. The surf here is best left for the experienced surfers. The Bonzai Pipeline is known for its possibly the most treacherous waves in the world. It is called a pipeline because the waves form a giant tube when they move from the deep water on to a shallow coral reef. When the waves are 10-15 feet, they break in 6 feet of water -- challenging and dangerous even to the best surfers. Waimea Bay and the Haleiwa Ali’i Beach are the other well known surfing spots, where waves reach up to 30 feet.
In December three major surf competitions, collectively known as the Triple Crown, take place - the Van's Hawaiian Pro at Ali'i Beach Park in Haleiwa; the Rip Curl Cup at Sunset Beach; and the XBox Gerry Lopez Pipeline Masters. These along with the Quiksilver Eddie Aikau Big Wave Invitational, held at Waimea Bay, bring together the world’s best professional surfers. If you can get the opportunity to witness these contests, you mustn’t miss them, because nowhere else in the world can you get the chance to see the top surfers riding some of the largest and most beautiful waves on the planet.
During the summer months, the ocean turns placid and safe. The fabled surfing beaches look like lakes with mere ripples of waves lapping the sand, making them great places for swimming, snorkeling and diving.
To learn more about the North Shore, go to Oahu.US Oahu North Page.
For a place to stay, please visit the Oahu.US North Shore Hotel Page.