Dogs No Dogs
River/Creek · Views · Waterfall · Wildflowers · Wildlife
The Kalalau trail, along the famous Napali coastline, offers stunning views and a challenging hike! It can be busy at times and draws crowds ranging from seasoned backpackers to walk-the-dog around the block enthusiasts. There are plenty of opportunities along the trail for amazing views of the coastline and ocean, so bring a camera!
Need to Know
There are streams that water can be pumped/filtered from. Water is unsafe to drink if not filtered. Use caution on this trail if rain is in the forecast. The Hanakapia'i Stream, Hanakoa Stream, and the Kalalau Stream are susceptible to flash floods. Additionally, the trail can become extremely muddy and slippery after rain. There are composting toilets at Hanakapia'i Beach, Hanakoa Camp Site, and Kalalau Beach.
As of June 2019, Advance reservations are now required for all vehicles, walk-in entry, and shuttle riders visiting Hāʻena State Park, as well as for day hikers accessing the Kalalau Trail. Plan your trip accordingly. Reservations may be made up to 30 days in advance, and no later than the day before your visit. Day permits see: gohaena.com; For overnight on the Kalalau Trail see: camping.ehawaii.gov
The Kalalau Trail is the best of the best on Kauai! The trailhead is located in Ha'ena State Park, at the end of Kuhio Highway (Highway 560). The trail itself is generally well maintained but expect it to be muddy, slippery, rocky, and uneven in many sections. The scenery is typical Napali coastline - lush vegetation, gorgeous waterfalls, and views for miles. If you only have a few hours, the most popular section of the trail ends at Hanakpia'i Beach where you can relax and watch the waves crash. Note: avoid swimming at the beach due to strong currents! Relax for awhile and backtrack to the car!
If you have more time and consider yourself an experienced, sure-footed, and adventurous explorer then continue on. The trail can be steep and narrow, so be cautious - particularly in wet and muddy sections. Camping is ONLY allowed, by permit, at the end of the trail at Kalalau Beach - mile 11. This is a one-way in-and-out trail... so backtrack to reach the trailhead.
Parking passes are required. Available in advance, however they do sell out quickly!
Flora & Fauna
History & Background
The current trail was built around 1860 by the Hawaiian Government to foster transportation and commerce for the residents living in the remote valleys. Local labor and dynamite were used to construct a trail wide enough to accommodate pack animals loaded with oranges, taro, and coffee being grown in the valleys.
Shared By: Ryan P