Scenery on Kauai
The iconic Napali Coast is located about 90 minutes north of Lihue, along the North Shore, and is Kauai’s most famous coastline. At 17 miles long, this stunning vista is comprised of emerald peaks and valleys with cascading waterfalls and looks very much like it did when the first settlers landed on Kauai.
These sheer cliffs provide a beautiful backdrop for our island but meant that the majority was inaccessible by foot. In the late 1800s, Hawaiians built a trail to get through to the rugged coast. The now famous Napali Coast hike is made up of the challenging 11 mile Kalalua Trail.
The trailhead is at Ke`e Beach and the hike ends at the secluded Kalalua Beach. This hike requires some preparation and cannot be done in flip flops. Many hikers even split the hike into two days and camp at Hanakoa. If you intend to camp, a camping permit from the Hawaii State Parks Division is required. For non-Hawaii residents, a camping permit is $20 per person per night.
The first two miles of the trail, starting at Ha`ena State Park to Hanakapi`ai Beach, is a popular day hike. Just be sure to wear athletic shoes with traction and carry a water bottle with you.
If you’re not planning on packing your hiking boots, there are plenty of other ways to enjoy the spectacular Napali Coast. There are a variety of boat tours that skirt the island, or you can get up close with a guided kayaking excursion. For the most breathtaking views of Napali Coast’s lush scenery many travelers take a helicopter tour. Our island takes about an hour to circle by air so you’ll see all the beauty the Garden Isle has to offer on your tour.