If you enjoy a balance of extreme thrill and uncompromised
comfort without breaking a sweat, viewing Näpali from up in
the air may be the best option for you. Soar high above peaking
mountaintops, staggering cliffs and the blue Pacific while taking
flight with one of the island’s famous helicopter tours. This is by
far the most awe-inspiring way to view the Näpali Coast from top
to bottom. Behold sights only accessible by air and clearly see the
dramatic changes in landscapes of the Garden Isle. Professional
pilots provide comprehensive information for a personalized tour.
Experiencing Näpali by air may be a little pricey, but if you want
to truly see Kauaÿi for yourself, a helicopter tour won’t disappoint.
The most intimate and challenging way to encounter the Näpali
Coast is by foot. Hikers and adventure seekers journey from all
over the world to see this remote locale up close and personal—
hiking the famous Kalalau Trail is one of the best ways. For those in
good physical condition, the journey takes a full day just one way,
crossing five major valleys on an extremely strenuous trail. This is
an overnight adventure where hikers usually camp at the rewarding
Kalalau Beach at the end of the path. The Kalalau Trailhead starts at
Kë‘ë Beach and is located literally at the end of the road (Hwy 560),
as far north as your car can take you. Upon arrival, the trailhead will
be marked with a sign to the left. However, you don’t need to trek
the entire 22 miles to experience Näpali at its finest.
The Kalalau Trail is commonly divided into three parts. Hiking
part one, from Kë‘ë Beach to Hanakäpï‘ai is fun, yet challenging.
The hike from Kë‘ë to Hanakäpï‘ai Beach is approximately two miles
on a trail that is maintained and heavily traveled, as most people opt
for this route and don’t venture past this point. Hanakäpï‘ai Beach
provides a quaint white sand cove in the summer months and rough
crashing waves during the winter. While serenely beautiful and a
picture perfect spot, swimming is not recommended as strong rip
currents and large surf make the beach dangerous and deadly—
even for experienced swimmers.
The true reward, however, is to continue onto part two of the
hike, making the rugged 4-mile journey inland to see Hanakäpï‘ai
Falls—an amazingly majestic waterfall cascading 300-ft down
a sheer cliff. This hike leads you through serene bamboo forests
and an untouched Kaua‘i jungle. Wild mountain goats navigate the
valley cliffs and may even exchange a curious glace as you trek the