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lauramsgarden Jul 19th, 2009 03:57 PM

safe beaches for swimming in Kauai
All the talk about dangerous waves etc... has me wondering if there are beaches in Kauai that are both picturesque and safe for swimming. We're staying about twenty minutes from Lihue, but willing and eager to drive around. Appreciate any ideas.

gyppielou Jul 19th, 2009 07:14 PM

It really comes down to what is happening in the middle of the pacific ocean and what season you are visiting. In the winter, the north shore beaches often are unswimmable. In the summer some of the south shore beaches are unswimmable. The best thing is you are aware about ocean safety and using extreme caution. Remember, when in doubt, don't go out. Study the water for riptides and consult lifequards and locals. Surfers may be out, but they have had their own share of ocean rescues when tourists think it is safe since the surfers are out. Kauai has some of the most extreme currents. I have spent all of two weeks in the water day and afternoon, and I have also spent a week barely getting my feet wet.

When are you visiting?

Safe journey

ksucat Jul 19th, 2009 07:19 PM

Excellent advice Kealani gyppielou!

Barbara5353 Jul 19th, 2009 07:42 PM

I am a very timid swimmer. The one beach on Kauai where I always feel safe is Anini Beach. There is an off shore reef that breaks the waves off in the distance. Near shore, it is usually calm. You can walk out quite a distance in the water and not be over your head. Smooth sand and turquoise blue waters. If the breeze is up there will be kite boarders skimming along out on the horizon. I like to park and swim at the beach park, where there are rest rooms, showers, and a few pleasant people having a good time. Only once, on a rainy blustery day, did I hesitate to go in the water there.
Nearer to where you'll be staying is Lydgate Beach Park.
Swimming is good inside a protected rock wall. I don't think the setting is as lovely as Anini, however.
If you enter these beach names on Google and click "images" you'll get lots of photos showing what both look like.

gyppielou Jul 19th, 2009 07:52 PM

Again, Anini has some dangerous riptides under certain conditions, and you want to beware. It could be like glass, or it could drag you out. Timing and awareness are everything.

Aloha ksucat, thanks for the shoutout. Just to be fair, there seems to be a Kealani posting. My chosen name during a banishment was Kealalani. Mahalo and keep up the ocean safety advice.

lauramsgarden Jul 20th, 2009 05:33 PM

thanks everyone, we visit next week...

Barbara5353 Jul 20th, 2009 06:20 PM

I forgot to mention Kalapaki Beach. This is another place where I usually find it easy to enter and exit the water, and pleasant to bob around. Since you will be near Lihue, it is definitely worth a visit. Kalapaki fronts the Kauai Marriott. I park in the "Beach Access" lot at the Marriott and use the far north end of the beach. There are rest rooms and a large grassy area for lounging. It seems to be acceptable for day-trippers to use the lounge chairs at this end...but don't try to sneak in the pool unless you are a guest. I like the hard packed sand and shallow slope. It is near the harbor and you will often see cruise ships passing by. I never go in the or anywhere...without observing other people in the water first. Even then, it pays to be cautious as conditions can change very rapidly.

gyppielou Jul 20th, 2009 09:34 PM

Hanalei Bay should be no problem this time of year. My favorite beach is Secret, but you can get into some trouble there - extreme caution. Polihale too can be intense. Follow the locals lead, and at both stay as close as you can to shore. Aslo, stay away from riverways, as murky waters are bad.

gyppielou Jul 20th, 2009 09:38 PM

oh and tune into

for your surf updates and local aloha

LeslieC Jul 20th, 2009 10:31 PM

I second Kalapaki Beach in front of the Marriott Hotel. It's a bay really and the water is very calm. While it is true that you cannot lounge by or in the pool area, there is a fund beach grill there where you can get an overpriced but yummy hot dog and there are restrooms by the beach you can use and nothing prevents you from traversing their beautiful grounds and lobbies. There are no private beaches allowed in Hawaii.

I also love Poipu Beach on the sunny south side and it's a very pleasant drive there. Hanalei is pretty calm but a much longer drive, depending on how far in which direction you are staying "20 min from Lihue."


cathies Jul 21st, 2009 04:11 AM

I haven't been to Hawaii so please excuse this comment if it isn't relevant. Here in Sydney, during the warm months, the beaches are staffed by life guards. Part of their role is to erect signs that indicate where it is safe to swim and whether or not dangerous currents are running. Does that happen in Hawaii, if so, then that would be the best guide for timid swimmers.

We have a trip planned to the States, including Hawaii so I will be keen to read the feedback to this question.

SiteC_er Jul 21st, 2009 06:29 AM

How about Pali Hali State Beach Park? I hear they have an awesome beach!

Kal Jul 21st, 2009 07:06 AM

Very awesome but safe????

But I go in the winter and have never gone in and even some locals don't do it then.
I wonder if the road to the beach is still closed?

Lydgate, Salt Pond and maybe the small beach next to The Beach House in Poipu are your best best.

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