Polihale Beach Trail (Barking Sands Beach)

EASY 4 reviews
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Polihale Beach Trail (Barking Sands Beach) is a 10.5 mile moderately trafficked out and back trail located near Kekaha, HI that features beautiful wild flowers and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round.

10.5 miles 511 feet Out & Back

kid friendly

birding

camping

fishing

hiking

nature trips

off road driving

surfing

walking

beach

views

wild flowers

wildlife

This beach is near a military reserve and is tricky to find, as there is poor signage--the main highway ends and becomes a dirt road for several miles (through a former sugarcane field?) with many forks. 4x4 suggested in many areas. If you get in trouble out here, you are totally on your own....be careful.

walking
19 days ago

We arrived mid-day for a short visit. This is the end of the line and where the Na Pali Coast begins. The sand was really hot, and it's a long walk to the water. The waves were nice and we enjoyed walking along the water's edge. Many folks had set up tents on the far western end of the beach, where the locals congregate for cookouts, fun and hanging out. This is a public access, so signs can be misleading – don’t drive on beach sand if you only have 2WD, you will get stuck – to get there, take Hwy 50 till it ends, veering right at the fork. The first dirt road leads 3.3 miles to a large monkey pod tree at the Polihale Beach Park sign. To the left is Queens Pond. If you go to the right at the tree, there is a soft sandy spot in the road 4.5 miles from where you left the pavement. This is where many 2WD drivers stop and climb the dune to get to the beach. An alternative way is to backtrack till you see the loop road thru the campsites. (1 mile from the monkey pod tree.) It goes to the top and along the dune, getting you closer to the beach. Dunes are 100 ft high. Rental car policies are voided when you drive on this beach and if you get stuck you are on your own – we saw one car spinning wheels for about five minutes but finally got out. With a Ford Explorer we went down to the end of the road next to the beach bathroom facilities. Great beach, highly recommended.

walking
1 year ago

This is a fantastic beach. Wide and beautiful white sand. I would recommend you go in an SUV as the road is rough on a regular car. The beach buts up to the Na Pali Coast........this is truly the end of the road. If you go further from here you will walk.

While it is beautiful to walk along, I don't believe this would be a good swimming beach. The waves hit hard but even more than that, the beach is known for having very strong currents. If you get in trouble out here, you are totally on your own....be careful.

hiking
3 years ago

The barking sand is from the wind blowing and causing its strange sound. Was very hot and the sand even worse because its so white. Super long beach and 4x4 suggested in many areas. Great spot and nice bathrooms and stuff.

walking
5 years ago

We believe this is AKA 'Barking Sands Beach," so named because the sand is supposedly so dry there that it will make a "barking" sound as you walk on it. Well, we did not hear too much "barking," but this very long and wide beach, blessed with a great abundance of fine, white sand, was one of the lovliest we've ever seen! The water was pleasantly warm, with plenty of wave activity that was not overwhelming. We also enjoyed visiting the ancient Hawaiian stone temple (HEI'AU) site set against the cliffs at the far end of the beach. This beach is near a military reserve and was tricky to find, as there was poor signage--the main highway ended and became a dirt road for several miles (through a former sugarcane field?) with many forks. We stubbornly persisted until we spotted the ocean through the dense growth.