All photos (30)Kalalau Trail
Kalalau Trail
Kalalau Trail

Kalalau Trail

48 reviews
Outdoors,Hiking and Nature,Hiking Trail
Ranked #1 in Haena things to do
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  • 9.7
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  • 8.5
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  • 5.6
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State Hwy 560 Hanalei, Hawaii
808-587-0400
http://kalalautrail.com/
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Description
This extensive trail leads through some of the most scenic terrain anywhere in the entire world. Any nature lover would put this at the top of his/her to-do list were they on Kauai, but even the most ... Read more
enthusiastic individuals should plan carefully for this excursion. At over eleven rugged miles one-way the trail is not for beginners or the out of practice. There are points where the trail is but a flattened off two foot wide ridge-line, leaving nothing but sheer drop to your left and right. Additionally, the trail can turn into a never-ending mud pie if there were recently heavy rains. Make sure you bring mosquito repellent with you and at least a water bottle for everyone in your party (there are places for you to refill along the path). If those warnings don’t sound like a deal breaker than you have a great opportunity to explore an area that will leave you with a vivid mental picture of Kauai that you’ll never forget.

Member Reviews(48)

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Local from Kilauea, Hawaii

You need to get a permit if you camp. This is for the experienced hikers. Respect the weather and do not hike in if it is raining.

Recommended for:Backpackers
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

One of the most famous hikes in the world. We did the Hanakapiai section which is just the first two miles of the Kalalau Trail. If you intend on going further and want to do the entire 11 miles a permit is needed ahead of time as most people camp for at least one night. Even doing just the first section it has beautiful sights of the Na Pali cliffs and is recommended for everyone as it is a reasonably easy hike. Make sure you bring plenty of water and wear good hiking shoes as parts of it are muddy.

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Tempe, Arizona

This is a magnificent hike for novice or expert, depending upon how far you go. Begin your hike at Kee Beach. Within the first mile, you will see incredible views of Kee Beach and the incomparable Na Pali Coast. There is too much to address all of the experience, but ask us or "study" a Kauai guidebook in preparation for your most memorable hike.

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Laguna Niguel, California, USA

Great hike, come early for parking. Bring water and snacks. Seems more than two miles.

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Honolulu, Hawaii

A must on your hiking list. This is an 8 mile RT hike on a trail hugging the Na Pali coastline. 2 miles in you will come to a beach where you can relax and have lunch. Then 2 more miles up to an invigorating waterfall.

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San Jose

I am NOT a hiker or a camper. The hike was painful (11 miles one-way) but worth it for anyone who is determined to experience paradise at least once in their life. Wish I could've stayed for 3 or 4 nights. Good luck on the trail!

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Miravet, Spain

Great to see such a mix of nationalities and ages attempting this 11-mile trail, though helpfully the first quarter of a mile tests the stamina of even the fittest and therefore may dissuade the less energetic from attempting to do more. Round every twist and turn is a new natural marvel to behold: from the grandeur of the surrounding landscape to wild orchids growing out of the rocks. I loved every moment of it, even with vertigo, and this was a fitting finale to an amazing week or so spent on this beautiful island.

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Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Not an easy hike but the end of the 2 miles is worth it. Plan on at least 4 hours unless you can run up and down mountain trails. Leaving to get back to the car was a tad harder, steeper, and sunnier. Bring lunch, lots of water, proper shoes, sunscreen

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Burns, Kansas

Could not believe the beauty that surrounded us while hiking this trail. We spotted whales jumping in the distance at the remote beach you hike into and set up our tents under a very convent natural cover of tree branches. There's a outdoor nature made shower and we co-habituated the beach with a couple of naked hippies playing ukuleles. Unforgettable experience. But you work for this paradise!! That 11 mile hike was a rough one, so prepare yourself for a little but of hell. In the end of course it's WELL worth the effort.

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Berkeley, California

“A must on Kauai”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2014 NEW
Even if you do just the first 2 miles, the views of the ragged Na Pali coast will take your breath away and you will get a decent idea for what the rest of the trail entails. This was by far the highlight of my trip to Kauai. We hiked the 4 miles to Hanakapai’ai Falls and were not disappointed.

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Los Altos, California, USA

I've done hikes on the trail twice and both times it was absolutely gorgeous with breathtaking views. I'd highly recommend doing the full hike in and out, but make sure you reserve a permit for camping overnight and book it a few months before you go. Even if you only hike a mile, go. It’s the reason most people come to Kauai. Bring water and sunscreen. I left fairly early in the morning to avoid the crowds of tourists and wasn’t disappointed. Out of all the hikes I've gotten to do around the world, this was the first one where we got to munch on fresh passion fruit and guava along the trail. Not many people do the full hike in and out, so while you may see people at the beginning of the trail and at the campsite that marks the end of the trail, we encountered very few people while we were actually hiking which was awesome.

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Seattle, Washington, USA
Ambassador

The most beautiful hike that I've ever been on! The views of the Na Pali Coast are impeccable and can't be beat! There are many points along the trail where you can discover a beach, waterfalls, etc. It's as long as you want it to be and the views are gorgeous every step of the way!

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Austin, Texas

If you like to hike, this is a great trail to try. Make sure you have sunscreen, good shoes, and lots of water. If you need a cool down after the hike, take a dip or snorkel at Kee Beach.

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Alamo, California, USA

Just the first mile is amazing..our son has done the whole trail many times....

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San Francisco, California, USA
Community Manager

Let me start off by saying this was not a hike I was prepared for. I thought I was, but after going on this hike, I realized how unprepared I really was.

First off, there are definitely a few variations of this hike. However if you want to go to the end and see the waterfall, be prepared to hike a good 8+ miles.

Second, you'll need these essentials:
- WATER!! (we brought a good 6 bottles, but still ran out)
- LUNCH & SNACKS (we only had snacks, which also ran out)
- hiking shoes - be ready for all terrains (we didn't encounter mud, but I know others who said it was a mudfest when they went)
- water shoes - these came in handy to hike through the deeper pool areas
- sunblock
- BUG REPELLENT - an absolute must, I got bitten alive and the bites stayed for weeks! (again, I think it depends on the season, as our friends encountered none)
- camera - there are gorgeous views along the trail as long as the weather is clear

That being said, have a blast!! And remember not to get discouraged when you're huffing and puffing up and down the mountain and some local Hawaiian chick runs by you barefoot in her sports bra and bootie shorts like it's no big deal. THIS HIKE IS TOUGH. If you're not use to the weather and all the other conditions that come with it, you'll be in for a treat either way ;)

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Portland, Oregon

I'm terrified of heights but this was truly amazing! We did the 2 mile hike to the beach and although it not an easy hike it's well worth it! Breath taking views and a must see!!

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Divide, Colorado

What a fantastic adventure! You hike along the top of the Napali coast line. The views are amazing. Be sure to read about this hike to determine how far you wish to go. This hike is for those who are in good health and used to strenuous hiking. Be sure to take PLENTY of water. If hiking to the beach plan on 1/2 a day. If hiking to the falls - a full day should be planned.

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San Luis Obispo

There's a reason why everyone says this is Hawaii's premier backpacking trek (though I think that Maui's Haleakala volcano beats this one). Along the sky-high sea cliffs of the Na Pali Coast, the hair-raising trail leads 11 miles all the way to remote Kalalau Valley, which you'll need an advance permit and overnight camping gear for. Otherwise, day hikers without a permit can go as far as the Hanikapiai Valley, 2 miles in, then turn upstream and bushwhack back to Hanikapiai Falls.

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Santa Cruz, California

If you are looking for a decent hike with gorgeous views, then this is a great trail to choose. There is a beach you can hike to 2 miles in, or you can go 2 more miles to get to a beautiful waterfall. Just make sure to have real hiking shoes and plenty of water and sunscreen.

See Ke'e Beach for some more details.

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Trabuco Canyon, California

If you like to hike, this trail can't be missed. Come early, since it can get crowded and parking will be a challenge. The views from the trail are unbelievable. Bring a hat, and water, and good hiking shoes. One more note, check the weather before going to far in, it can get very wet!

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Kalalau Trail
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