Kauai – the Garden Island

Written by Michael Zangerle on . Posted in USA

After a stop over in Nadi / Fiji, we flew to Kauai / Hawaii. Friends of us recommended this island as a hikers dream. Camping at beaches is the way to experience this island. So we got a car and rented camping gear with Cheryl from Kaui Camper Rental.

The first two nights we stayed at the Polihale State Park, with a 27 km (17 miles) beach and dunes. It was fantastic to lie in the sand and watch the night sky. After 15 shooting stars I ran out of wishes.

First we explored the south of the island and hiked in the Waimea Canyon. From different lookouts we had a very good glance at the beautiful Na Pali coast. So we got closer to our dream to hike along the Na Pali coast, the famous Kalalau Trail.

It is nearly impossible to remember all this Hawaiian names, so here are a view trails and lookouts we did: Waimea Canyon Lookout, Pu’u Ka Pele Lookout, Pu’u Hinahina Lookout, Ni’ihau Viewpoint, Koke’e Museum, Kalalau Lookout, Pu’u o Kila Lookout with the view at the Kalalau valley (biggest valley at Na Pali), trek to the Waipo’o Falls on the Canyon Trail.

You see, the names are a bit difficult and it is getting better. We come to this later.

Since we planned to do the Kalalau Trail, which is 17.6 km (11 miles), we needed a backpack. Travelling with scuba gear is no fun, I can tell you. So we called Cheryl and she was so sweet and borrowed us her high tech backpack with sleeping backs and air mattresses – for free.

It was time to get our camping permits but since it was Labor Day we couldn’t get any for Sunday and Monday. Well we will find something. But first we try some different brews at the Kuna Coffee Factory.

The next days we followed slowly the coastline and stopped at stunning beaches like Po’ipu and Gillin’s Beach, afterwards Secret Beach and Secret Lava Pools, Anini Beach, Hanalei Bay in Princeville and many more.

At the Kilauea Lighthouse we could watch spinner dolphins and sea birds and after we have seen so many signs we had to try this famous Shave Ice. We stopped at Ha’nea Beach Park for two days to plan our Na Pali coast trip.

You can read more about our Kalalau Trail in a separate report. Don’t miss it, so check out our homepage soon.