Fodor's Expert Review Kalalau

Hanalei, Haena, and West Beach–Sight Fodor's Choice
Kalalau beach, North Shore Kauai, Kauai, Hawaii, USA.

Located at the end of the trail with the same name, Kalalau is a remote beach in spectacular Napali Coast State Wilderness Park. Reaching it requires an arduous 11-mile hike along sea cliff faces, through steaming tropical valleys, and across sometimes-raging streams. Another option is to paddle a kayak to the beach—summer only, though; otherwise the surf is way too big. The beach is anchored by a heiau (a stone platform used as a place of worship) on one end and a waterfall on the other. The safest time to come is summer, when the trail is dry and the beach is wide, cupped by low, vegetated sand dunes and a large walk-in cave on the western edge. Day hikes into the valley offer waterfalls, freshwater swimming pools, and wild, tropical fruits. Though state camping permits are required, the valley often has a significant illegal crowd, which has strained park facilities and degraded much of its former peaceful solitude. Helicopter overflights are near-constant in good weather.... READ MORE

Located at the end of the trail with the same name, Kalalau is a remote beach in spectacular Napali Coast State Wilderness Park. Reaching it requires an arduous 11-mile hike along sea cliff faces, through steaming tropical valleys, and across sometimes-raging streams. Another option is to paddle a kayak to the beach—summer only, though; otherwise the surf is way too big. The beach is anchored by a heiau (a stone platform used as a place of worship) on one end and a waterfall on the other. The safest time to come is summer, when the trail is dry and the beach is wide, cupped by low, vegetated sand dunes and a large walk-in cave on the western edge. Day hikes into the valley offer waterfalls, freshwater swimming pools, and wild, tropical fruits. Though state camping permits are required, the valley often has a significant illegal crowd, which has strained park facilities and degraded much of its former peaceful solitude. Helicopter overflights are near-constant in good weather. Amenities: none. Best for: sunset; walking.

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Beach–Sight Fodor's Choice

Quick Facts

Hawaii  n/a, USA

www.hawaiistateparks.org

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