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Na Pali Coast (Kalalau) Trail is a 22 mile heavily trafficked out and back trail located near Hanalei, Kauai, Hawaii that features a waterfall and is only recommended for very experienced adventurers. The trail offers a number of activity options and is accessible year-round. Dogs are also able to use this trail.

Length 22.0 mi Elevation gain 6,177 ft Route type Out & Back

Dog friendly

Backpacking

Camping

Hiking

Nature trips

Running

Beach

Cave

Forest

River

Views

Waterfall

Wild flowers

Wildlife

Bugs

Muddy

Over grown

Rocky

Washed out

Description
Waypoints (0)
Facilities
Contact
Tips
Getting There

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.

Squeeze in on the narrow roadway shoulders or on the many roadside pull overs, parks and overlooks.

Hawai'i Department of Land and Natural Resources: (808)587-0166

Use caution while hiking as the trail is dangerously steep and narrow. Hike with a buddy. Permit required to camp.

Drive to the end of the highway on Kauai's Northwest shore. You will find parking at Ke'e beach, and the trailhead is off of the parking lot, about 20 yards from the beach.

Weather
UV Index
Daylight
Reviews (628)
Photos (1952)
Recordings (322)
Completed (1372)
Aleks Schillmoeller
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Jul 02 2020
HikingOver grownRockyScramble

My boyfriend and I did the entire trail in one-day the last weekend of June. I DO NOT recommend doing it this way but we were limited on our gear and time on Kauai. We did the 11 miles out in 5 hours, spent 45 minutes in Kalalau, and back out in 5 hours. We power walked the first 4 miles in, and ran mile 17 and 18 on the way out. We parked at Haena Beach Park and walked the extra mile in for free parking! Due to a last minute hike, we risked it without a permit. We were lucky and no one checked but I think this may have been because of Covid. We arrived at the trailhead at 7:30am. Unfortunately we got delayed for 2 hours because a 40-yr old man died on the trail on Mile 1 at that time and medics showed up. I think it is still unknown his cause of death but I heard it might have been a pre-existing heart condition. Nonetheless this trail requires physical strength. We didn’t end up on the trail until 9:30qm. We zoomed through the first 4 miles and then started to get tired. Got to the beach at 2:15pm and hung out for 45 minutes. We refilled our water at the stream in the valley. Locals told us we could refill without any iodine or filtration and we did! No issues/no one got sick. We each drank 3L of water on the way in and way out. Miles 11-17 were okay on the way back but then our legs and feet started to feel it. Just intense fatigue and pain! Due to our 2 hour delay at the beginning, we were worried about making the mile 20 stream crossing before sunset and trail ran miles 17 and 18. We made it over the last stream crossing in time. We hit last light on mile 21 and had to use our cell phone flash lights on the last mile down. We hit the trail head at 8pm. Rinsed off at the showers and walked the 1 mile back to Haena beach park, this time on the road. My feet were blisters galore! If you plan to do the hike in one day, I recommend bringing extra sweat wicking socks. Sunscreen is a must. Water! But know you can refill at the end or bring your own iodine, etc. We don’t like using poles and usually just scramble with our hands but everyone else loves them. Also should mention that I’m a professional dancer and yoga + pilates instructor. My boyfriend is a former long distance runner. We are definitely advanced hikers. However we did not feel that this hike was as advanced as many of the ridge hikes we frequently take on Oahu where we live. That being said, it’s not for the faint of heart. Aloha!

Ashley Croughan
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Jun 06 2020

Hiked this in the pouring rain, it was an amazing experience!! Wear shoes with good traction!

Jenny Bello
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Jun 05 2020
HikingOff trail

I went with a local on an off trail hike and the views are pretty freakin epic. It’s sooooo steep though. One wrong move and you’re done, so if you’ve got not fear find yourself a local who knows the land. My guy was 75 at the time and did the hike barefoot. The OG of the island

redge fuentes
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu May 28 2020
Hiking

Incredible experience and breathtaking views left and right throughout the whole journey! What a memorable experience hiking kalalau trail. Would definitely keep coming back. So much worth the long journey.

chadd W.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Apr 04 2020
Hiking

One of my favorite Kauai trails. Killer hike with great elevation gains, incredible views and the “pot of gold at the end of the rainbow,” Kalalau beach. No cell phone service, no vehicle access...a real experience.

kent eudy
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Mar 15 2020
Hiking

Fantastic views from the trail. Very muddy in spots, but not as bad as the Waimea Canyon hikes (especially Nu’alolo). We did this hike 5 years ago and the parking and loitering around Ke’e beach was a disaster. The new process of requiring hiking and parking permits has really cleaned things up. The new parking lot and shuttle service was a great idea! The overall experience is now excellent!

Jeff N.
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Mar 05 2020
HikingMuddyScramble

Super muddy throughout most of it and stream crossings are high but doable. You’ll be muddy and wet the whole time, but will also have a big grin and amazing views most of the way. Crawlers ledge and a couple other small spots seem like class 3-4 scrambles and are not for the faint of heart. Sturdy trekking poles recommended as well.

View Jeff's Recording
Damiem Chamness
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Feb 28 2020
HikingMuddy
View Damiem's Recording
Jared Grant
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Feb 25 2020
BackpackingMuddy

completed the trail on Feb 19-20. absolutely amazing views and trail the whole way. we hiked the full 11 miles in one day with overnight packs and it took us 8 hours. I would definitely recommend getting and overnight parking permit and starting early. parts of the trail were very muddy, but very doable. crawlers ledge was not nearly as bad as we'd thought. Good grip the whole way as long as you have a head for exposure.

Katie Becker
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Feb 23 2020
HikingBugsFloodedMuddyScramble

The trail is absolutely worth the trek. We lucked out with weather and it was worth getting up at first light and hitting each step of the way. After the first two miles it gets tighter and more dangerous (especially if you’ve had rain). Bring extra hydration supplements for your water. We went all the way in the first day, stayed two nights at the end. Came back half way and camped at the other designated camp spot by the waterfall before finishing the last 6 miles the last day. Take your time to enjoy the sites... it’s so stunning.

Douglas Sears
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarWed Feb 19 2020
Hiking

Rank this trail VERY high on my list of favorites. If time and authorities allowed, we coulda spent all in this beautiful place

Elisabeth Schutza
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarTue Feb 18 2020
HikingMuddy

Gorgeous! I can’t emphasize enough how muddy this trail was at this time of year. 100% use poles. You will get muddy, no avoiding it, but there’s lots of streams to rinse off in. I would recommend 3-4 days. While 11miles doesn’t sound like much, this trail took a lot longer than expected. We camped at mile six the first night and then went to the beach at mile 11 and back to mile six day two, then hiked our day three. Lots of brush along the way that might irritate your legs, and there were bugs , but definitely worth it. A permit is required, and they did check. Beautiful hike.

Lyndsey Riess
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Feb 16 2020

I hit both waterfalls and hiked this trail in one day, and I'd HIGHLY suggest no one ever do the same! the extra 5+ miles and incline were definitely felt towards the end of the hike. I easily did close to 30 miles that day. My friend ended up getting separated from me (on purpose) and she ended up having to spend the night at mile 2.25 mark since it was raining and the stream was too strong to cross, so I'd recommend checking the weather and if it is due to rain at any point of your trip, then I'd recommend not spending the night because there is a high possibility of you also getting stuck. The hike is beautiful and definitely one for the books!

Steve Reeve
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarSat Feb 08 2020
HikingMuddyOver grown
View Steve's Recording
Karen Ramming
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Feb 03 2020
HikingOver grownRocky

This is by far the most beautiful hike I have ever done, and it’s worth every hour and step you spend on the trail. My boyfriend and I finished it in one day. The lot is listed as opening at 6:30 am, but we arrive around 6 and the gate was open so we just parked, left our parking permits on our dash (you NEED them — $200 fine if you don’t have them on your car), and were on the trail around 6:20 am. We needed headlamps for the first three miles, but seeing sunrise on it was more than worth the early start. We finished around 4:30 that afternoon. The first mile does a good job weeding out the non-experienced hikers, as it’s very technical, then the rest is smooth sailing (for the most part). Miles approx. 6-8 were very overgrown, and we ended up with rashes on our legs from the growth rubbing them (it went away overnight, nbd). Mile 8-9 is completely barren and feels like you’re baking on the surface of Mars. Once you get close to the beach around mile 10 the rangers have done a good job clearing the path. Bring plenty of snacks and iodine pills for cleaning your water. There are lots of streams and waterfalls to refill.

soma myers
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarMon Feb 03 2020

Gorgeous trail. Many amazing viewpoints along the way. Due to pending rain we only did the first two miles, and stopped at the beach for lunch. Was perfect for us. I definitely recommend leaving early in the day to get there at sunrise, it's beautiful but you also beat the mid day heat!

Dave Kirslis
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Feb 02 2020
Hiking

I did the entire thing in 2 days. I walked out with my wife just past mile 6, setup camp, then she stayed there and I walked to the end and then back to mile 6 all in day 1. The 2nd day we walked back. I would recommend 2-4 nights instead of one permitted night. It gets easier after mile 7. So beautiful. Make sure you have a water filtering device or iodine tablets.

Lauren Henderson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSun Feb 02 2020
Hiking

This was a hike of a life time that met every expectation. We did this trail from 1/26-1/29/20. Three nights was perfect for us. We stayed at the campsite at 6 miles on night 1, the beach on night 2, and the campsite at 6 miles again for night 3. While the campsite at mile 6 wasn’t anything special, this made the hike more manageable and enjoyable. We were luck with the weather. It would have been very slippery in the mud if it had been raining. The beach was amazing and worth the hike.

David Patterson
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarSat Feb 01 2020
Hiking

I've done the whole thing once and partial twice. You need to be in REALLY GOOD SHAPE. Can't stress this enough. If you can run 3 miles or do 30 minutes on stairmaster setting 5 you should be ok. Life-changing! Get a camping permit and stay the night at Kalalau beach. If you bring a purification straw or tablets you can fill up at streams and not have to carry so much water weight. Don't forget Ibuprofen if over 40. And blister supplies. This is amazing, and you can do it, but get prepared. Strenuous to say the least.

Kathy Dufresne
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarFri Jan 31 2020
HikingMuddy

Quelle rando extraordinaire!! Attention, il y a deux façons de pouvoir faire la Kalalau trail (1ere partie). Premièrement, accéder au sentier gratuitement en accédant à la ke'e beach via la plage précédente Haena beach (roche, vague et forêt sont au rendez-vous). Deuxièmement, obtenir un accès au sentier en achetant un billet pour le shuttle (15$ US/personne) qui vous mènera au début du sentier (achat en ligne seulement et à l'avance) ou acheter votre accès (places limitées en ligne très à l'avance). points de vue splendides. Prévoir partir très tôt si vous voulez vous rendre à la chute dans la première partie du sentier.

Kelly McDermott
Yellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarThu Jan 30 2020
HikingMuddyRocky

22 miles completed in 11 hours. Trail is muddy, but all water crossings are passable.

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