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Overnight camping at Bellows to be suspended ahead of turtle nesting season

No camping at Bellows Field Beach Park from May 1 through August 29, 2024. Weekend, day-use to remain open to public

O‘AHU -- With the return of the sea turtle (honu) nesting period approaching, Marine Corps Base Hawai‘i (MCBH) and the Honolulu Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) are announcing the suspension of overnight at camping for Bellows Field Beach Park from Wednesday, May 1 through Thursday, August 29, 2024.

Permitted camping is scheduled to return for the popular Labor Day Weekend period, beginning Friday, August 30. However, the suspension of overnight camping may be extended should there be an active honu nesting site at the campground. Further updates will be provided as we approach that holiday weekend.

This approximately 18-week suspension applies to overnight camping and the twilight use of the bathroom and shower facilities. Weekend day-use of this popular stretch of beach in Waimānalo will continue as regularly allowed. Weekday military training exercises are also expected to continue, with protection measures for identified nesting sites, restricting use of those areas.

This suspension is necessary to ensure the safety of this federally-protected, culturally significant, endangered species in anticipation of honu nesting, incubating, and hatching along this popular shoreline. Community, military, and park officials have documented several human activities in this area that threaten the safety of the nesting turtles, such as: illegal beach off-roading, camping fires, off-leash dogs, illegal trash dumping, and the presence of artificial lighting.

Once a nesting site is confirmed, the area surrounding the nest will be cordoned off from human use. Signs will be posted at the public facilities with information about the turtle nesting sites. We encourage everyone to report any disturbing or illegal behavior against the turtles or nests by calling (808) 285-9529 or (808) 257-2123.

Since 2020, honu nesting sites have been documented along this pristine, Windward O‘ahu shoreline. Though the exact reason for this previously unprecedented arrival is not completely certain, the first recorded use of these beaches by the nesting turtles coincided with pandemic park closures, which resulted in significantly less human visitation to the beach. Mahalo to the public and the community for their patience and understanding while camping at this location is suspended.

Bellows Field Beach Park, located at Marine Corps Training Area Bellows, is one of 17 campgrounds operated by DPR. Three-day overnight camping is normally allowed at one of the campground's 50 campsites with a permit. For information about this and the other 16 campgrounds, including how to apply for a camping permit, please visit

Separate cabin/campsite rentals are operated by Bellows Air Force Station and are available for booking by eligible patrons such as active-duty military, veterans, and Department of Defense employees. For more information visit

If you need an auxiliary aid/service, other accommodations due to a disability, or an interpreter for a language other than English in reference to this announcement, please contact the Honolulu Department of Parks and Recreation at (808) 768-3003 on weekdays from 7:45 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. or email at least three business days before the scheduled event. Without sufficient advanced notice, it may not be possible to fulfill requests.


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