Kauai Off The Beaten Path
Off The Beaten Path
The original St. Raphael’s Church.
The cemetery at St. Raphael’s.
Koloa Sugar Plantation
Koloa Sugar Plantation
Reviews from VirtualTourist Members
Na Pali Coast
The Na Pali Coast is a remote stretch of magical coastland along the western side of Kauai. Much of this area is unreachable due to the sheer cliffs that cascade into the Pacific Ocean below. There aren’t any roads here so to experience the majesty of the Na Pali Coast one must hike in on foot or cruise in via boat. Great views of the Na Pali Coast can be had from Ke’e Beach on the north, the top of Waimea Canyon or Polihale State beach on the south. There are also small planes and helicopters that provide aerial tours of the coastline. Experienced hikers and campers can explore the area thanks to the Kalalau Trail that begins at Ke’e Beach. Visitors to the area won’t be disappointed if you’re lucky enough to catch a glimpse of this breathtaking scenery.
End of the Road Paradise
Polihale state beach is literally at the western end of the island. It’s literally the end of the road, out past the Pacific Missile Range Facility. This beach is extremely remote and difficult to reach. Four wheel drive vehicles are recommended but not required for the drive out to the beach as the last six miles is a rough, unpaved, potholed dirt road that is sometimes closed. Unfortunately, the day we ventured out the road was indeed closed so we didn’t get out to the beach. I have heard that the views are spectacular but the water is rough and not fit for swimming, except for Queen’s Pond. Camping and fishing are allowed.To get here take Highway 50 past Kekaha. Turn on Kekaha Road then a right turn onto Old Mana Road. Continue approximately 13 miles.
Rope Swing of a 25 ft cliff!
Go to Kipu Falls - a freshwater Waterfall on "private" land at the end of Kipu Road. Even though it's private land, both locals and tourists visit. On one side of the pond there is a 25 ft cliff with a rope swing that you can jump from. (It's in the Blue Kauai guidebook that everyone has...Kauai Revealed. If you swing, make sure to RELEASE on time - I had a slow release and hit the water flat on my back. I had bruises for 10 days!Also, wear water shoes - hiking in and out is slippery and very WET.
Maniniholo Dry Cave
If you take a drive along the north coast past Hanalei, you will see the Maniniholo Dry Cve, across the street from the Haena Beach State Park. The cave cuts several hundred yards into the base of a vertical cliff. The high roof at the entrance of the cvern gets progressively lowe as you want to the rear of the cave. There are spooky recesses and rooms off the main passageway which were too dark for us to explore without artificial light, which we didn't have. It is said that those who go back far enough will find a small gap which opens to the top of the cliff at the very back of the cave.According to Hawaiian legend Maniniholo was the cheif fisherman for the Menehune, (fabled Leprechan-like folk who inhabited the island in prehistoric times. Maniniholo and other Menehune dug the cave in a vain effort to unearth an evil supernatural being called "akua," who had been stealing their fish....
Fly Like a Bird — Almost!
This has to be the most amazing thing I've done while on the islands! You get to fly as high as a bird with a view unhindered by windows. You will feel the rush of air on your face with a view limited only by how far you can turn your head. And, every which way you turn, you are greeted with a view that will leave you panting in anticipation for the next. It is simply exhilarating!To see my video slide show of this flight all set to classical music, go to http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yQMqJgYA7zs.We flew with Ultralight Adventures Kaua‘i (http://www.kauaiultralight.com). We originally booked a 1-hour flight with them. Then, on the day of our flights, we were talked into a 90-minute flight that offered a more dramatic excursion into Kalalau Valley (FYI: The $270.00, 90-minute flight is not listed on their website). It was worth every extra penny! Our flight path went from Port Allen...
Visit Gilligan's Island
Moloa'a Bay, was the location for the pilot episode of Gilligan's Island.For anyone who's early years were spent watching this sitcom, you might just find it of interest.It's also a very nice beach, located between Kilauea and Anahola, down Koolau Road, it's easy to miss the tiny street sign if your not careful.(Tip from: The Ultimate Kauai Guidebook) It's a wonderful beach on calm days. The right (southeast) side is much nicer than the northwest side. Very pretty beach, but not a great swimming beach when seas aren't calm. It's off the main highway and not as well known as other beaches. Take the first (southeastern) Ko'olau Road (before the 17 mile marker) to Moloa'a Road.The public access is near the end of Moloa'a Road. Parking is very limited. Park where there are no NO PARKING signs to dissuade you. You might have to walk a ways to the beach, but it's worth it. To get to the...
Ha! Ha! This is really off the Beaten Path!
We're just driving along trying to get to the north shore to Tunnel's beach and we see this sign that read's "Hawaiian Hardwoods". My boyfriend, who is driving, makes a quick u-turn and we look down this dirt road. He wants to know what the Hawaiian Hardwoods are all about. We drive slowly and carefully down the dirt road, passing one house after another until we get to the last house (and there are additional arrow signs pointing the way). We park the car and knock on the screen door. No one is there. We enter the house structure and to our amazement, there are all kinds of wood items on display like a store. Wood boxes, sculptures, bowls, etc. Sign says, if you want to buy anything, put your money in an envelope and put it in the box. The box was a cardboard box. My boyfriend ended up buying a custom coffee table from this place (the owner showed up while we were there).
Polihale State Park
It is vast. It is an amazing long beach the most western part of the island you could get to along the coast. Very deserted, it looks like a bit end of the world or something. To get there 4WD is recommended because the road becomes dirt road but it’s also fun to drive bumpy roads! It is an open sea so you need to be careful for a strong currency, but there is a swimming pool too so you can enjoy water there. don’t forget to bring something to shade from sun it is a big open space with no shade.
Pu'u O Kila Lookout
Please don't turn back towards the shore once you leave Waimea Canyon!!!! You'll miss one of the most amazing views of the Kalalau Valley and the Na Pali cliffs. If you continue on Hwy 550 past the canyon lookout and go as far as you can, you'll reach the Pu'u O Kila Lookout. The views from here are breathtaking.Kalaulau Beach and Valley can only be reached by foot from the Kalalau Trail or by privately chartered boat (which, as you may guess can cost you your first born). So for those of us who don't feel like hiking for a week, or don't want to give up our first born, this may be the only way you can see such an awesome sight. You could also take a helicopter tour or a boat tour, but this is the way to go if you are on a budget.When you go, be sure to go all the way to the end of the road--which is about 19 miles from the start of Hwy 550. Don't stop at the Kalalau Valley Lookout as...
Polihale Beach is remarkable! It is often overlooked, but is one of the most spectacular beaches I've ever seen. There are so many different shades of blue in the water, then there's the start of the Na Pali cliffs and the huge sand dunes, and the whale watching is great--depending upon the season. We saw 3 whales while sitting on the beach in early February.This is a good beach for expert surfers and for strolling. Swimming is certainly not recommended for there is an extremely strong undertow, nor is surfing for the novice.The drive here can be treacherous and is recommended for 4 wheel drive vehicles only. We were on a motorcyle, so we didn't have some of the same obstacles that you would have with a car. Don't come here if it's been raining on the West Shore--you certainly will get the car stuck.Camping is allowed here and you must get a permit from the Division of State Parks...
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