Haena County Beach Park
Haena County Beach Park
An incredible Bay and Beach await those willing to go the distance for this "end of the road" treat. An 8 mile drive past Hanalei town along some of the most beautiful coastline in Hawaii transports you to this park with a view. Upon crossing a small stream you enter the immediately into the parking area and 5.5 acres of lawn and picnic areas, that is called Ha'ena County Beach Park.
AT A GLANCE:
HIGHLIGHTS: A breathtakingly beautiful beach and bay with towering cliffs above and cerulean blue ocean reaching toward the horizon. Ha'ena is a great combination of beach park, and picnic grounds with an amazing large cave to explore adjacent to the parking area.
ACTIVITIES: Swimming, snorkeling, beach lounging, and picnics
LIFEGUARD: YES 7 Daily 9a.m. to 5 p.m.
WARNINGS! Always a good idea to check in with the lifeguards at Haena.
The conditions here change drastically from day to day.
AMENITIES: Parking lot, restrooms, showers, picnic tables, and pay phones.
Food vendors in parking lot.
Ha'ena is the first of 2 main landing zones for those traveling to the end of Kuhio Highway on Kaua'i's North Shore. It is a great place to pull over and get your bearings for how to spend your time, as there are many options in the area. As a county beach park, Ha'ena has a lifeguard tower, therefor it is a great place to check in and get the days ocean recommendations. Conditions vary to an extreme here, the summer has calmer days and snorkeling, and the winter can have huge surf that can inundate the beach and close the park to swimmers.
Regardless of conditions, the beauty of Ha'ena is tangible in every direction. There are towering vertical cliffs reaching tall above that are over grown with vegetation, and at the base a deep cut dry cave that stretches 50 yards under the mountain. The cerulean blue ocean stretches broad to the horizon, and to the left and right sides of the Bay are the areas known as "Cannons" and "Tunnels" respectively. The elements seem more potent and raw here, a real sense of the creation and slow destruction of the islands is visible above and below the waters surface.
An extreme wonder of nature is roadside just across the parking area. The "Dry Cave" is remnant of the lava-made history of this once volcanically active island. The exposed lava tube is huge and accessible enough to walk right into at the roadside making for the easiest spelunking on island.
Ha'ena Beach is a great parking area to walk over to the right hand point known as "Tunnels", a rich and complex underwater set of reefs and lava rocks that host amazing snorkeling during calm ocean conditions in the summer months.
Closet town: Hanalei
Drive Kuhio Highway/ HI-route 56 West out of Hanalei town for 7 miles until you begin to enter a neighborhood with many "Tunnels" related hand painted signs. Go slowly through the area until you come to a stream crossing that has you driving through the water. Just past the crossing turn into the and small parking area on the right.