Hawaii is one of the most beautiful places in the world, with its sandy beaches, crystal clear waters, lush greenery, and stunning sunsets. It is a dream vacation spot for many and for good reason. The islands offer a variety of activities, from hiking and water sports to exploring volcanoes and enjoying delicious local cuisine. However, Hawaii is also home to some of the most Instagram-worthy spots in the world. From hidden waterfalls to colorful street art, there’s no shortage of beautiful places to snap a photo and share it with the world.
In this post, we’re going to take you on a journey through the 20 most popular photography spots in Hawaii, showing you some of the hidden gems that you may not have discovered yet. So grab your camera, and let’s discover the beauty of Hawaii together!
#1. The Road to Hana, Maui
The Road to Hana is a must-do drive in Hawaii, offering 52 miles of winding roads, waterfalls, and breathtaking views. It takes visitors through lush rainforests, past waterfalls, and over narrow bridges, making it one of the most Instagram-worthy spots in Hawaii. Popular stops include Twin Falls, where visitors can dip in refreshing waters or enjoy a picnic.
Wai’anapanapa’s black sand beach offers dramatic contrasts against crystal-clear water, while nearby caves and lava tubes offer unique adventures. The Road to Hana is not just a drive; it’s an experience to be immersed in Maui’s natural beauty. Take your time, stop often, and capture Instagram-worthy moments along the way.
#2. Lanikai Beach, Oahu
Lanikai Beach, on Oahu’s east coast, is a hidden treasure with crystal-clear turquoise seas and beautiful white sand. It has wonderful views and is surrounded by gorgeous homes and rich foliage. It is ideal for swimming, sunbathing, and kayaking. The Mokulua Islands can be seen from the beach, adding to the lovely setting. Renting a kayak and exploring the Mokulua Islands are popular activities.
Although the beach can get crowded during peak season, it’s recommended to go early to get a good place and enjoy the peace and quiet before the crowd arrives. In summary, Lanikai Beach is one of the most amazing photography spots to visit in Hawaii.
#3. Makapu’u Tidepools, Oahu
Makapu’u Tidepools, a hidden gem off the east coast of Oahu, is formed by volcanic rock and offer a unique landscape with crystal-clear waters and colorful marine life. The hike to these natural pools is steep, rocky, and slippery, but it takes less than an hour. The stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and surrounding cliffs make it a worthwhile experience. However, it’s crucial to check tide charts before planning your visit, visit during low tide, wear appropriate footwear, and bring snorkeling gear, as the pools are teeming with marine life.
#4. Kualoa Ranch, Oahu
Kualoa Ranch on Oahu is a nature lover’s paradise and one of the most Instagram-worthy spots in Hawaii. With 4,000 acres of lush greenery and diverse wildlife, the ranch offers scenic views of the Pacific Ocean and Koolau Mountains. Popular attractions include a movie tour, where visitors can see locations from famous Hollywood movies such as Jurassic Park, Godzilla, and Pearl Harbor.
Other activities include horseback riding, ATV tours, and zip-lining. For a more relaxed experience, the ranch has picnic areas for leisurely lunches and breathtaking views. Kualoa Ranch is one of the must-visit photography spots for Oahu, Hawaii travelers seeking the perfect Instagram shot.
#5. Waimoku Falls, Maui
Maui’s Waimoku Falls, located in Haleakala National Park, is a breathtaking natural wonder in Hawaii. A two-mile hike through bamboo forests and streams leads to the falls, which stand 400 feet tall. The waterfall offers stunning views of the coastline and surrounding mountains. Whether you’re an experienced hiker or seeking a new adventure, Waimoku Falls is a must-see destination. Share a photo or two with your Instagram followers to make this one of the most Instagram-worthy spots in Hawaii.
#6. Papakolea Green Sand Beach, Big Island
Papakolea Green Sand Beach, located on the Big Island, is one of the unique and Instagram-worthy spots in Hawaii. Its vibrant green sand is created by the presence of olivine minerals. Accessible by hiking or a 4-wheel drive, the beach offers a peaceful and picturesque retreat. The 2.5-mile hike takes you through dramatic cliffs, rugged terrain, and stunning coastal vistas. Upon arrival, visitors can enjoy striking green sand and crystal-clear waters.
More so, the beach is perfect for swimming, sunbathing, or exploring the surrounding rocky coves. To capture the perfect Instagram shot, take a photo of the sand with the blue ocean in the background, unique rock formations, or waves crashing against the shore. Take time to fully experience the beauty and serenity of this hidden gem in Hawaii.
#7. Waipio Valley, Big Island
Waipio Valley, also known as the “Valley of the Kings,” is a hidden gem in Hawaii, known for its lush greenery, towering cliffs, and black sand beach. Accessible by four-wheel drive vehicles or hiking, the valley offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean and the valley. The black sand beach, made of tiny volcanic rocks, is a popular spot for beach photoshoots and romantic picnics.
Additionally, the Waipio Valley lookout offers panoramic views of the valley and offers a panoramic view of the landscape. Wild horses may also roam around the valley. Overall, Waipio Valley is one of the must-see photography spots in Hawaii for Instagram enthusiasts, offering awe-inspiring photos and a chance to spot wild horses.
#8. Lulumahu Falls, Oahu
Lulumahu Falls, one of the must-visit picture spots is a breathtaking and secluded spot in Oahu, Hawaii. Hidden in the forest, the two-mile roundtrip trail offers stunning views of lush foliage, bamboo forests, and refreshing streams. The waterfall’s mesmerizing sound and large boulders surround it, making it perfect for a refreshing dip after a hike. The natural beauty of the falls is Instagram-worthy, and visitors should respect the area and leave no trash behind, as it is a sacred place for locals.
#9. Koko Head Crater Trail
Koko Head Crater Trail is a must-visit spot for hiking enthusiasts and nature lovers. The trail is located on the eastern side of Oahu and offers breathtaking views of the island and the Pacific Ocean. The trail begins at Koko Head Park and is a challenging hike, with over 1,000 steps to the top. But the views from the top are worth the effort! You’ll be able to see the entire island of Oahu, such as Diamond Head, Waikiki, and Hanauma Bay.
The trail is surrounded by lush greenery and flowers, and you may even see some wildlife along the way. Be sure to bring plenty of water and wear comfortable shoes, as the trail can be steep and rocky in some areas. And don’t forget your camera – you’ll want to capture the stunning views from the top!
#10. Kaena Point Trail, Oahu
The Kaena Point Trail on Oahu is a hidden treasure with breathtaking views and a one-of-a-kind hiking experience. It takes about two hours to walk from the island’s westernmost tip and offers beautiful views of the Pacific Ocean, rough shoreline, and neighboring mountains.
The walk is very easy and suited for hikers of all ability levels, and it provides the opportunity to see native Hawaiian vegetation and fauna, including endangered species such as the Hawaiian monk seal and the Laysan albatross. Hikers can finish with a beautiful view of Kaena Point, a protected bird sanctuary that is home to a variety of seabirds. The sunset view is especially lovely, with hues of orange, red, and pink coloring the sky.
#11. Manoa Falls, Oahu
Manoa Falls, a 150-foot waterfall in Manoa Valley, is a hidden gem on Oahu’s island. Located in Manoa Valley, it offers stunning views of the mountains and forest. The hike to the falls is a 1.6-mile round trip on muddy and slippery trails. Visitors can enjoy the sound of rushing water and misty air, making it a worthwhile adventure. Although swimming is not recommended due to potential flash floods, the waterfall is one of the must-see photography spots for those seeking an Instagram-worthy and off-the-beaten-path experience in Hawaii.
#12. Kauai’s Na Pali Coast
Kauai’s Na Pali Coast is a stunning landscape in Hawaii, with jagged cliffs towering over the ocean and lush greenery and waterfalls. It’s a paradise for nature lovers and photographers. Boat tours offer a unique perspective of the coast, allowing visitors to see the towering cliffs up close. For those seeking adventure, the Kalalau Trail is a challenging 11-mile trek through scenic parts of the coast, offering breathtaking views. Regardless of the choice, the Na Pali Coast is a highlight of any trip to Hawaii, making it one of the must-visit Instagram-worthy spots.
#13. Kalalau Trail, Kauai
The Kalalau Trail is a must-visit destination on Kauai’s north shore, offering breathtaking views of Hawaii. The 11-mile trail leads hikers through lush valleys, towering cliffs, and cascading waterfalls. It ends at Kalalau Beach, a secluded stretch of sand accessible only by foot, offering stunning views of the Pacific Ocean.
One of the most Instagram-worthy spots along the trail is Hanakapiai Falls, Hawaii, located about two miles into the hike. The falls cascade down a 300-foot cliff into a pool of crystal-clear water, making for a perfect photo opportunity. Although steep and rocky, the Kalalau Trail is not for the faint of heart, making it an unforgettable experience with some of the most stunning views in Hawaii.
#14. Waialeale Blue Hole, Kauai
The Waialeale Blue Hole, a hidden gem on Kauai’s stunning island, is accessible only by helicopter or hiking. This natural wonder is a stunning turquoise pool surrounded by lush greenery and cascading waterfalls. Located in the Alakai Swamp, the Blue Hole is a remote and pristine area in Hawaii. The 8-mile hike to the Blue Hole is challenging but offers breathtaking views. If you are not up for the hike, helicopter tours offer a unique perspective of the island, allowing visitors to see the Blue Hole from above, along with other stunning sights such as Waimea Canyon, Na Pali Coast, and Mount Waialeale.
The Waialeale Blue Hole is a must-see destination for anyone visiting Kauai, offering a serene and peaceful escape from everyday life. Don’t forget to bring your camera, as this one of the photography spots in Hawaii will provide stunning photos.
#15. Waihe’e Ridge Trail, Maui
Maui is a picturesque and adventurous island in Hawaii, offering hidden gems to explore. The Waihe’e Ridge Trail is a stunning hike that provides a 360-degree view of the island’s lush greenery, cascading waterfalls, and ocean vistas. This moderate-level hike takes 2-3 hours and covers around 4.5 miles. The trail leads through a dense forest with gradual ascents that eventually lead to a panoramic view of the island. Along the way, you’ll see the West Maui Mountains, the crystal blue ocean, and the beautiful town of Wailuku.
The trail is dotted with Instagram-worthy spots, such as a bamboo forest, wildflowers, and a cascading waterfall. If you’re lucky, you might spot native birds such as the ‘I’o and ‘Apapane. This hike is a nature lover’s paradise and a must-visit spot for anyone visiting Maui.
#16. Iao Valley State Park, Maui
Iao Valley State Park is a tranquil haven on Maui, affording breathtaking views from its 1,200-foot-tall rock pinnacle, the Iao Needle. The park has hiking and exploring routes, and visitors may learn about the park’s history and relevance to Hawaiian culture by visiting the Hawaii Nature Center’s interactive exhibits. The park was previously the scene of a major battle that decided the fate of Maui, making it an ideal location for a memorable Hawaiian trip. After a day of climbing and touring, visitors can cool off in the natural pools. In summary, Iao Valley State Park is a must-see for any Hawaiian vacation.
#17. Haleakala National Park, Maui
Haleakala National Park is a must-see in Maui, featuring breathtaking views and the Haleakala Crater, a dormant volcano with unique geological formations and rich plant and animal life. The sunrise at the park is spectacular, and the sunset is equally stunning. There are hiking paths through lush forests, old lava fields, and flowing waterfalls, such as the Pipiwai Trail, which leads to Waimoku Falls. The park is ideal for outdoor enthusiasts or those looking for photography spots for Instagram in Hawaii.
#18. Puu Pehe (Sweetheart Rock), Lanai
Puu Pehe, also known as Sweetheart Rock, is a famous landmark on Lanai Island, Hawaii. It rises out of the ocean and is a popular spot for hikers and photographers, offering stunning views of the coastline and the Pacific Ocean. Legends suggest a warrior fell in love with a princess and carried her to the rock to prove his love. Tragically, a storm swept them away. The best time to visit is during the golden hour, just before sunset, when the sky is warm and the rock takes on a golden glow. This spot is perfect for capturing stunning photos and enjoying the natural beauty of Hawaii.
#19. Molokini Crater, Maui
Molokini Crater, a volcanic caldera off Maui, Hawaii, is a popular spot for snorkeling and diving, offering diverse marine life. With excellent visibility, it’s an ideal location for underwater photography. The crater is home to various coral and fish species, ranging from bright reds and oranges to deep blues and greens. Visitors can enjoy guided snorkeling trips or glass-bottom boat tours to explore the crater’s coral reefs and interact with its colorful marine life. The unique beauty and fascinating marine life make Molokini Crater one of the most Instagram-worthy spots in Hawaii.
#20. Pololu Valley Overlook
Pololu Valley Overlook is a hidden gem on the northern coast of the Big Island, offering panoramic views of the valley and ocean. Hiking a steep and rocky trail to the overlook provides stunning views of the coastline and surrounding jungle. The viewpoint offers stunning views of the Pololu Valley, such as its black sand beach and towering cliffs.
It’s an ideal spot for Instagram-worthy shots and whale watching during the winter months, as humpback whales can be spotted frolicking in the waters below. For a unique and unforgettable experience in Hawaii, add Pololu Valley Overlook to your list of must-visit photography spots.