Hiking the Kalalau Trail to Hanakapi'ai Beach, Napali Coast, Kauai - Hawaii
Blog Post - November 11, 2021
We were so excited to explore the north side of the Napali Coast of Kauai by hiking the Kalalau Trail to the remote beach called Hanakapi'ai Beach.
This is 4-mile round trip hike that is difficult, but worth it.
You now have to make a reservation to get into Ha'ena State Park and that's where the trailhaed is to get to Hanakapi'ai Beach.
You have to book a parking pass and permit or shuttle pass and permit to visit this beach. The parking passes are hard to get and they are only for a few hours. The shuttle is the other option and that gives you access from 7am to 5pm.
We booked a shuttle with a permit to visit at $35 per person.
This is the website to book it: GoHaena.com
The shuttle leaves from Waipa Park and Ride in Hanalei. The address is 5-5631 Kuhio Hwy, Hanalei, HI 96714.
The hiking sign estimates that it takes 1 to 2 hours to hike to Hanakapi'ai beach. Due to how steep some of the hike is, that is a good estimate.
This is what the Waipa Park and Ride looks like:
The shuttle dropped us off at the Ha'ena State Park parking lot.
As you walk over to the pavilion, there is a wood boardwalk path that takes you to both Ke'e Beach and the Kalalau Trail.
As you walk the trail, you'll see signs pointing you in the right direction.
Right before the trailhead, there is a bathroom.
There is one last sign before you hit the trailhead.
This is the beginning of the Kalalau Trail.
The beginning of the trail has some pretty steep parts.
At the top of the first steep climb, there is an amazing view of Ke'e beach down below.
We got back to hiking. From this point it was a lot of up and downs on the switchbacks on the trail.
As we got closer to the beach, there were some overlooks on the trail with views of Hanakapi'ai Beach.
You'll know you're really close when you see these warning signs.
This is where you'll come to a big stream. You can either cross over the rocks or follow the trail along the stream down to the beach. We followed the trail alongside the stream down to the beach.
As we came out onto the beach, the views are amazing! We went to the right, north, to explore the sea caves first.
Then we walked the rest of the beach. We absolutely loved this beach!
Overall, we loved this beach and would highly recommend going on your next trip to Kauai!
You have to make a reservation at GoHaena.com for either
- Shuttle + Entry Pass (Convenient | More Availability) Includes State Parks entry pass. $35 adults age 16+, $25 ages 4-15, ages under 3 free on lap.
- Parking + Entry Pass (Very Limited Availability) Limited parking. Lot fills up quickly. All ticketed passengers must arrive together in your vehicle for parking reservations to grant park entry (no multiple trips). Multiple vehicles must make separate reservations for each vehicle. $10/timeslot (plus $5 entry passes for everyone in the vehicle).
Total cost: $70 for 2 adults
These are the checklist items I recommend:
- Bring a plenty of water and some snacks
- Bring a hat to keep the sun off of your face.
- Bring sunscreen
- Bring a beach towel
- Wear good hiking shoes
- This video was filmed with a Go Pro Hero 9 Black video camera
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