HIKING THE KALALAU TRAIL TO HANAKAPI'AI FALLS
One of the top activities in Kauai is hiking, and the Kalalau Trail is probably the most famous of all the trails on the island. It is featured in a film Ryan and I love called A Perfect Getaway, so we knew we had to hike at least part of it on our trip. The entire trail is 11 miles and requires a permit. I also have to mention it is EXTREMELY dangerous and difficult. Maybe one day we will do it, but this trip we decided to take it easy and only hike the first leg!
The morning of our hike it was POURING rain, but we didn't let that stop us. I'm glad we didn't because by the time we got to the trailhead it was only a light drizzle. We hopped on a shuttle to Ke'e Beach (you need to make reservations for the hike and the only reservations left were through this shuttle company) and started our 12 mile journey. For the first few miles to Hanakapi'ai Beach we had pretty decent weather, but by the time we got to the beach the sky cleared up and the sun came out shining bright!
Then it was time to head into the jungle to reach Hanakapi'ai Falls. This part of the hike was particularly challenging because we had to cross the river multiple times. Because of the heavy rains all day the rapids were really strong and the water was up to our waists at some points. The risk of flash flooding is super high in that area so I was a little nervous, but it was all worth it in the end when we reached the waterfall! There were only three people there when we got there and they were on their way out so we had the entire spot to ourselves for about an hour before we decided to head back. Can you imagine an entire waterfall in the middle of the jungle to yourselves?! It was incredible!
Of course the second we were going to leave the waterfall for the 6 mile hike back it started to pour. And I mean TORRENTIAL RAINS! We ended up jogging most of the trail where it was safe but some parts were super slippery and steep. Not to mention there was like a 300 foot drop to the ocean along the Na Pali Coastline! But again, worth it!
If you do any hikes on your trip I would HIGHLY recommend this one! Make sure to visit the trail website to book your reservation before you go!