North Shore to South Shore, Kauai Offers Spectacular Beaches
As the oldest of the main Hawaiian Islands, Kauai has had the most time for the wind and weather to carve away at the volcanic lava rock that formed Hawaii and create beautiful golden sand beaches. Whenever visiting a beach in Hawaii make sure to follow all Kauai Ocean Safety Tips.
Keʻe Beach – Few beaches have such a lush and tropical setting as Keʻe Beach with clear blue water set beneath majestic cliffs at the edge of the famed Na Pali Coast. This is a great place for snorkeling during the summer months. Winter can bring strong currents, waves and other dangers so make sure to check with lifeguards. This is also the site of the Na Pali trailhead so you can enjoy a day hike to Hanakapiai Valley and then return for a swim at Keʻe Beach.
Mahaulepu Beach – The Mahaulepu Heritage Trail follows along the southern coastline to reach this remote beach in an area important in Hawaiian history and culture. Scientific work in the area is ongoing and continues to reveal clues about Hawaii’s past. A treasure trove of information has come from the excavation limestone sinkholes among the cliffs and sand dunes. The trail to the beach is one of Hawaii’s nicest coastal hikes, and the Mahaulepu Beach is great too!
Tunnels (Makua) and Haena Beach Park – Protected by an offshore reef with plentiful fish and pristine water, Tunnels is set beneath a backdrop of green mountains typically lined with waterfalls. Tunnels, know also by its Hawaii name Makua, is a great snorkeling beach when the ocean conditions are calm, particularly during the summer months.
The scenery and translucent turquoise waters make this one of Hawaii’s finest beaches. Just down from Tunnels is Haena Beach Park where you can often find a food truck to get some snacks, or a chilled coconut that will be opened on the spot to quench your thirst!
Polihale Beach – At the end of the paved road on Kauai’s southwest shore is a dirt road that leads miles farther west to the remote and pristine Polihale Beach. Known for its deep and wide stretch of sand that goes on and on for many miles, Polihale is a favorite camping area.