Top Oahu Beaches For A Sunset Session


September 7, 2022

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Even though we’ve seen them many times, beautiful sunsets still manage to take our breath away. So it’s no surprise that many of our dog photography clients choose to book a sunset session with their dog. Thankfully, Oahu has some amazing beaches that make the perfect stop for a breathtaking sunset photo session. Want the inside scoop? We’re sharing the top Oahu beaches for a sunset session!

Even if a sunset session wasn’t originally what you had in mind, we think that the view from these beaches may just encourage you to have a change of heart. Sunset sessions are an amazing experience! And we know that you’ll love the results… warm, golden tones, dramatic skies, vibrant colors. Plus, you don’t have to get up early in the morning to catch a sunset!

Best Beaches On Oahu For A Sunset Photography Session

Makua Beach

Top Oahu Beaches For A Sunset Session Makua Beach by Keri Nakahashi Photography

This beach had to take the top spot because it has a reputation for having one of the best sunset views on Oahu. The east end of the beach is crowned with a large limestone rock, Pohaku Ku La’ila’i. Part of what makes this beach so perfect for a sunset session is how secluded it is. You won’t have to worry about dodging large groups of people while we work to get the perfect shot. This is especially good for dogs who are easily distracted or who don’t feel comfortable around large groups of people. 

Mokuleia Beach

Located on Oahu’s North Shore,  Mokuleia Beach has the Waianae mountains to one side and the vast expanse of the Pacific Ocean on the other. If you want a postcard-perfect sunset shot, you will be sure to get one here. This is another quiet, secluded beach where you won’t need to worry about crowds of tourists. 

Kualoa Beach

When you think of Hawaii beaches, Kualoa’s vibe is certainly what comes to mind! This is a very picturesque beach with a view of Mokolii island on one side and the Koolau mountains on the other. In fact, for something extra special, you can even paddle or kayak out to Mokolii to catch the sunset from the tiny little island. There truly are endless possibilities for photo locales at Kualoa, so you won’t be disappointed.

 Maili Beach

Top Oahu Beaches For A Sunset Session Maili Beach by Keri Nakahashi Photography

If you don’t mind a weekday session, Maili Beach is another incredible option for sunset pictures. In addition to the beautiful sandy beach, there is a stunning view of the Waianae mountains, a stretch of grass, and tons of beautiful palm trees. This beach encompasses 40 acres, so there’s sure to be a spot that speaks to you. Your dog will shine in the natural beauty of this beach setting. But keep in mind that weekdays are the best for sessions at this beach because of the lack of crowds. 

Papa’iloa Beach

Located along Oahu’s North Shore, Papa’iloa Beach, also known as Police Beach, is a lesser-known gem! This is a favorite surf spot for locals, boasting big waves all year round. But this is also an amazing photo destination because of the long, white sand beach and the picturesque rocky reef area. Of course, dogs are allowed at this beach, but be sure to keep an eye out for big waves during your pup’s shoot.

More Oahu Beaches For Breathtaking Sunset Photos

Kakaako Park

This is a truly unique place for a photo shoot. It has a checkered past as a former landfill and does not have the sandy beach vibe of other locations. Instead, it offers an expanse of grass and trees that create a popular and beautiful park. The waterfront is what makes it an interesting place for sunset photos. It is marked by a seawall and dotted with boulders. You have so many options at Kakaako! You can get beautiful pictures in the green space with the water and sunset in the background… or on a calm evening, you can even venture closer to the sea wall for some unique shots there.

Kuliouou Beach

Top Oahu Beaches For A Sunset Session Kuliouou Beach Keri Nakahashi Photography

This beach is not known for its crystal waters. In fact, the waters tend to be a little murky. What makes this beach great for a sunset session is how dog-friendly the beach is. And, of course, the view of Koko Crater can’t be beat! Thankfully, this beach is more popular with locals than tourists, so you won’t have to deal with crowds. Sunset photos will capture the scenic beauty and enhance the unique character of Kuliouou Beach while providing a perfect backdrop for your dog. 

Aweoweo Beach

Tucked away in a residential area, this is another little gem that is perfect for sunset photos thanks to its seclusion. Located on the North Shore, this beach is well known amongst the local population for the turtle cleaning station nearby. Weekends can be a little busier since the residents of the area will come to this beach to avoid the tourist crowds. Weekdays are not as busy and are better for scheduling a sunset photo shoot. Like all the beaches along the North Shore, the sunset views are incredible, so you absolutely can’t go wrong by selecting this beach as the backdrop for your sunset session. 

Haleiwa Beach Park

Top Oahu Beaches For A Sunset Session Haleiwa Beach Park by Keri Nakahashi Photography

Haleiwa Beach Park is popular with beginner surfers because of the relatively calm and shallow waters. But the sea floor can be a bit rocky, so it is not a popular beach for swimming. The park is off the beaten path which makes a photo session easier at any time of day for most of the year. However, Haleiwa is also used for canoe and regatta training, so some times of year may be busier than others. The park features some lovely palm trees which look beautiful in a sunset photo. You can also choose to do your session in the grassy area that borders the beach if you have a dog with delicate paws that would rather avoid the sand and rocks. 

If you still aren’t certain which type of session is right for you and your dog, take a look at our portfolio to get some ideas. Or, feel free to contact us to share more about what you envision. We’re always happy to make suggestions based on your pet, their personality, your schedule, and your overall preferences. After all, this session will live on as an amazing memory… and maybe even as art in your home!

One thing is for certain… whatever beach you choose, your photos will come out as beautiful tributes to your pet and what makes them special.

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a Honolulu based dog photographer for those obsessed with their furbaby. Here youʻll find all things dogs + Hawaii - photography tips, top dog-friendly spots, client sessions, and more!

I'm Keri.


Facebook Copy-color Created with Sketch.
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a Honolulu based dog photographer for those obsessed with their furbaby. Here youʻll find all things dogs + Hawaii - photography tips, top dog-friendly spots, client sessions, and more!

I'm Keri.


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