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Best trails in Kauai

14,189 Reviews
Trying to find the best Kauai trails? AllTrails has 87 great hiking trails, trail running trails, mountain biking trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. If you're looking for the best trails around Kapaʻa, Wainiha or Hanalei, we've got you covered. Just looking to take a quick stroll? We've got 41 easy trails in Kauai ranging from 0.7 to 12.1 miles and from 9 to 4,189 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
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Map of trails in Kauai
Top trails (87)
#1 - Hanakapi'ai Falls Trail
Na Pali Coast State Wilderness Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(920)
Length: 8 mi • Est. 4 h 46 m
NOTE: Advance reservations are now required for all visitors (except state of Hawaiʻi residents). Please see state park website for reservations and information https://www.gohaena.com/ The first 2 miles is a moderate hike to Hanakapiai Beach. From there it is another 2 strenuous miles to the falls. The trail is very muddy and slippery during the first mile. Hollywood is a big fan of this Hawaiian island's spectacular landscape, which is why it's a popular filming location for movies like Raiders of the Lost Ark and Jurassic Park. Like most trails on Kauai, the route up to the falls is quite rugged and usually quite slippery. This route should not be attempted during or immediately after a heavy rainfall.Show more
#2 - Na Pali Coast (Kalalau) Trail
Na Pali Coast State Wilderness Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(614)
Length: 22 mi • Est. Multi-day
Advance reservations are now required for all visitors (except state of Hawaiʻi residents). Limited overnight parking is available with a valid overnight camping permit; otherwise you must pre-book a shuttle or private pickup when camping overnight. Please see state park website for reservations and information https://www.gohaena.com/. The island of Kauai is called the Garden Isle for many reasons. Many of which will become apparent as you hike through the jungle on your way through the Na Pali coast. The hike begins at Ke'e beach, at the end of the road on Kauai's North shore. You immediately begin climbing up and old trail, build with paving stones, but somewhat slippery and crumbling. Long legs are a bonus here, as well as excellent grip on your hiking boots. The hike heads up and along the edge of the hills, very close to the ocean. There are great views of the Pacific here, as well as majestic jungle mountain views.Show more
#3 - Awa'awapuhi Trail
Koke'e State Park
hardYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(1004)
Length: 6.7 mi • Est. 4 h 8 m
#4 - Canyon Trail to Waipoo Falls
Koke'e State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(743)
Length: 3.2 mi • Est. 2 h 6 m
#5 - Sleeping Giant (Nounou Mountain) West Trail
Nounou State Forest Reserve
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(803)
Length: 1.7 mi • Est. 1 h 9 m
#6 - Hoopii Falls Trail
Kapaʻa, Kauai, Hawaii
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(838)
Length: 2 mi • Est. 56 m
This site is open to the public although it is on privately owned land.Show more
#7 - Hanakapi'ai Beach
Ha'ena State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(601)
Length: 4.2 mi • Est. 2 h 27 m
NOTE: Advance reservations are now required for all visitors (except state of Hawaiʻi residents). Please see state park website for reservations and information https://www.gohaena.com/ This is the first 2 miles to Hanakapi'ai Beach along the Kalalau Trail in the Na Pali Coast, Kauai, Hawaii. This first portion of the trail is heavily used. The trail is often muddy and slippery due to sporadic rainfall. It is not recommended for children under age 6. The hike to Hanakapiai beach is by far one of the most beautiful trails in all Hawaii. The first two miles of the Napali Coast trail is breathtaking. The Hanakapiai Trail will climb steadily for the first mile to an elevation of 400 feet. Dont let this discourage you, as soon as you reach the first mile vista, you will be rewarded with sweeping views of the Napali coastline and an aerial view of Kee beach and the coral reef that creates the protective lagoon at Kee beach, perfect for snorkeling during the summer months. As you make your way along this portion of the Kalalau Trail you will switchback from coast to valleys, over fresh water streams and waterfalls. As you make your final descent into Hanakapiai Valley you will discover jungles of twisted vines, wild ginger, bananas, guava, varied Ti plants and at the end the cool waters of Hanakapiai Stream. The crystal clear river that flows from the falls two miles up river is a refreshing reprieve for tired, hot and muddy feet. Cool off in the river the ocean here is NOT for swimming. When you reach Hanakapiai stream you will need to cross the stream by boulder hopping. The beach is on the other side and during the summer months this beautiful beach is great for sunbathing, exploring the rocks and caves. But at no time is swimming recommended. The views from the beach back up the valley are magical. Most people make this their turn around point, but for those with the time and endurance can trek up the river trail another two miles through bamboo forest; the hike is 4 miles round-trip to beach, 8 miles round-trip to Falls. Caution: During heavy rains and high surf this trail can be extremely dangerous near the river and the shorelines. Do not attempt to cross the river during heavy rains. Flash flooding can occur without notice. Show more
#8 - Sleeping Giant (Nounou Mountain) East Trail
Nounou State Forest Reserve
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(788)
Length: 3.2 mi • Est. 1 h 17 m
Climb the face of the fabled sleeping giant, and prey you don't wake him! Local legend tells of a giant who feasted so much at a party in his honor that he laid down for a nap and never awoke, and when you see the mountain's resemblance to a sleeping giant from the nearby town of Kapa'a you can see why the legend persists. This is a nice little hike if you're in the area, and a great way of sampling some of Kauai's exotic plant life and bird population. Certainly it's not the greatest trail on the island (particularly when it's up against such stiff competition) but if you're planning to be spending some time around the leeward side soaking up some rays, then it's worth checking out. The trail ends at a picnic shelter on the "chest" of the Sleeping Giant in Nonou Forest Reserve, where there are vistas of the ocean coastline, as well as inland to the Wailua River and Mount Waialeale. The west side trail joins this trail near the 1.5 mile post.Show more
#9 - Waipo'o Falls via Pu'u Hinahina and Canyon Trail
Koke'e State Park
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(480)
Length: 2.8 mi • Est. 1 h 55 m
#10 - Queen's Bath Trail
Princeville, Kauai, Hawaii
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(565)
Length: 0.8 mi • Est. 23 m
*NOTE* Pay attention to safety warnings at the trailhead! This is a dangerous area and many people have been killed, injured, or needed rescue. If the gates are closed - do not enter. This area can be extremely dangerous. Even just standing in the area is dangerous, as you can get swept out to sea. The gates are closed when the area is expecting high surf - do not go around the gates! Be aware of the surf and avoid this area if the waves are large. Look at the surf report before visiting and pay special attention to wave height. Unfortunately, people have drowned here, and those who have been rescued have been held liable for the fees associated. The Queen's Bath is a unique tidal pool on the island of Kauai, Hawaii. The pool is a sinkhole surrounded by igneous rock and located on the north shore of Kauai near Princeville. During the winter when wave activity is violent, it is considered dangerous. In the summer sometimes the surf is small enough to go swimming in the pool. Small fish and tiny sea life also live in the tide pool, such as Hawaiian sea urchins, Angelfish and the small critter locals call "Ghost fish." The original "Queen's Bath" was located in Kalapana on the Big Island of Hawaii. It was formed after a lava tube collapsed and filled with fresh water supplied by natural springs. In ancient times only the Alii (Royalty) were permitted entry to the sacred waters. In 1983 Kilauea Volcano erupted and in 1987 the original site was destroyed by lava flow. Only after the original site on the Big Island of Hawaii was destroyed did the location on Kauai become better known as "Queen's Bath." This tidal pool was used for what it sounds like; it was a royal bathing place. It was also used as a place of relaxation when an Alii needed to "wash off the stress".Show more
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