The Cove – Kihei Surf Guide

Mar 1, 2024 | 0 comments

The Cove Surf Guide

Kihei may not be known for having stellar surf, but you can get your feet in the wax almost year-round at the Cove – one of Kihei’s most well-known surf spots.

The Cove surfing

The Cove is located on the south end of Kalama Park. This break is primarily a longboarding spot, but occasional large swells can deliver short-boardable surf to the Cove. The soft and rolling waves here make it a perfect place for beginners. The Cove is a prime spot to learn how to surf, and many surf schools operate in this area.


The Cove Swells

The Cove is located in Kihei on Maui’s southwest side. Unfortunately, the islands of Kahoolawe and Lani block most swells from hitting Kihei’s coastline – hence The Cove’s notoriously small surf.

Cove Surf Spot

However, if the swells are large enough – and come from the right direction – The Cove can turn into a racy shortboard wave. Keep in mind this is very rare, and 99 times out of 100, you’ll be surfing ankle slappers here. Great news for beginners!

Despite being blocked by the neighboring islands, there is usually always something to ride at The Cove. South swells deliver fun longboard waves to The Cove all summer. West swells keep the surf rolling in here from December to March.


The Cove For Beginners: Surf Lessons

The Cove is one of the few Maui surf breaks suitable for beginners — thanks to its sandy entry and mellow nature. It’s a great place to take your first-ever surf lesson, and there are a ton of surf schools in the area to choose from.

Maui Hawaii

Since the waves at the Cove are so mellow, this is also a great spot to take your kids surfing or sign them up for their first lesson.

If you’re still a beginner but don’t need to take a Maui surf lesson, the Cove is an ideal spot to practice. You can rent a board from one of the nearby surf shops and hit the waves.

The Cove for beginners

The only real hazard at the Cove is the shallow reef. Some areas of the Cove are sandy, but there are pockets of reef that you should be aware of. Remember to fall flat and never step on the reef.


The Cove For Advanced Surfers

The Cove is known for its small waves, but experienced longboarders can find some really fun surf out here on the right swell.

The Cove for advanced surfing

The surf schools usually stick to the waves in front of the seawall at Kalama Park. Surfers with some experience can surf the rolling waves near the southern end of the Cove. Or, paddle north past the surf schools towards Kalama Park. Here, you’ll find a smattering of reef breaks known as ‘Kalama Bowls.’

On very, very rare occasions, large west and south swells can send overhead waves to The Cove – turning the break into an excellent short-boarding wave.


Places to Stay Near The Cove

There are a range of places to stay near The Cove, from condos to vacation homes to hotels.

One of the best places to stay near The Cove is the Maui Coast Hotel. It’s located about a half mile from the surf. It’s an easy walk from the beach park to the hotel, with sidewalks and marked crosswalks.

Maui Coast Hotel surfing

And when you’re not surfing, you can hang by the Maui Coast Hotel’s pool, play a few tennis games, grab some grub at Kihei Caffe, or enjoy the nearby beaches at Charley Young and Kamaole I.


The Cove Tips

Crowds – The Cove can get very crowded with surf schools. Luckily, they usually stick to one area. There are lots of little breaks around The Cove where you can surf with only a few other people.

Parking – One of the best things about surfing The Cove is that there is plenty of parking in the area. You can park at Kalama Park and walk about 500 feet to the paddle-out area or park on the street directly in front of the break. Cove Beach Park also has a small parking lot.

Dangers – The biggest dangers at The Cove are sharp reef, sea urchins, and other surfers. Avoid standing up in the shallow water while surfing here. If you fall off your board, fall flat. If you’re not confident in your surfing ability, try to find a spot away from surf schools and other surfers to avoid collisions.

Park Amenities – There is a ton going on in the Cove Park area. Cove Park and Kalama Park feature picnic areas, BBQ grills, restrooms, parking, beach volleyball courts, a playground, and more. Plus, you’ll also find restaurants, food trucks, bars, surf shops, souvenir shops, and more across the street!

The Cove Maui Hawaii


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