Beaches on the North Shore

Tunnels Beach

On of the North Shore most popular beaches is Tunnels Beach aka Makua Beach. This postcard-perfect stretch of golden sand is backed by ironwood trees and tropical palms that offer welcome shade. The beach is unique in having an inner and an outer reef. The inner reef is ideal for snorkelers, while advanced divers and snorkelers explore the outer reef, which has more lava tubes, arches, and coral formations. We were lucky to experience six Honu (green Hawaiian Sea turtles) that hung out for the day just yards from the beach in the clear aqua water.

Location: Haena (50.5 miles from Poipu)

Ke’e Beach

Kee Beach is located at the end of Highway 560 and is one of the island’s most popular North Shore beaches.

You are going to be hard-pressed to find a better view than the NaPali Coast as seen from the far right end of Kee Beach. Situated between NaPali and Limahuli streams, the lagoon-like beach is also popular for snorkeling. The water here is very clear and reef fish are abundant. The chickens are part of the local scene, and it makes us wonder, where else will you find chickens on a beach?

Location: Haena

Hanalei Beach Park & Bay

This is one of the best family beaches on the island. At 125 ft. wide and with over two miles of sand along the crescent-shaped bay, the surroundings are abundant with views of the verdant mountains rising in the background.

Hanalei Bay Beach is bordered by the Hanalei River to the east, and the Waipa River to the west, and there are two large coral reefs at both ends of the bay.

For those seeking ocean fun and diversity, the beach has a little of everything. The right side of the bay features a reef that creates ideal surfing conditions for those looking to catch some waves. Near the pier the waves are much more gentle, making it an ideal location for those new to the ocean or rookie wave riders. Boogie boarding is reliable along the central portion of the bay, and even some intermediate surfing is possible here. The crowds don`t flock to this beach, so there’s plenty of room for everyone at Hanalei Bay.

Location: Hanalei (45.1 miles from Poipu)

Anini Beach

Anini Beach is a stunning destination located on the north shore of Kauai in Hawaii. This beach is a great spot for snorkeling and shell collecting, as it is known for its calm waters, an abundance of sea life, and a wide selection of shells. The coral reefs surrounding the beach are full of colorful tropical fish, as well as a variety of other sea creatures. Furthermore, Anini Beach has a wide variety of shells that can be found along the shoreline. There is a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and colors, making it a great spot for shell collecting. In addition to snorkeling and shell collecting, Anini Beach is also a great spot for swimming and sunbathing. The waters are generally calm and the beach is well-maintained, making it a great spot for families. There are also a few amenities located at the beach, including restrooms, showers, and picnic tables. Anini Beach is a great spot for a day trip or a weekend getaway. Whether you are looking to snorkel, sunbathe, collect shells, or just take in the views, Anini Beach is the perfect place to do it.

Location: Kalihiwai (42.3 miles from Poipu)

Haena Beach Park

Haena Beach Park is a hidden gem located on the north shore. This secluded beach boasts a pristine, crystal-clear shoreline surrounded by a lush tropical landscape, making it a picture-perfect destination for anyone looking to experience the natural beauty of the island. The beach itself is relatively small, making it the perfect destination if you`re looking for a place to relax without having to deal with large crowds. The water is calm and inviting, especially in the winter, making it ideal for swimming and sunbathing. There are small waves close to the shore, making it a great place for beginner surfers to practice their skills. The beach is also an excellent destination for snorkeling, as there is a plethora of colorful fish and pristine coral reefs to explore just off the shoreline.

One of the most striking features of Haena Beach Park is the majestic mountain range looming in the background. The lush, green mountains provide a stunning contrast to the white sandy beach and the turquoise waters of the Pacific Ocean. This view alone is worth the trip to Haena Beach Park. Haena Beach Park is also a great place to relax and have a picnic, as there are plenty of picnic tables and shaded areas available for visitors to use. Additionally, the park has restrooms and outdoor showers for visitors to clean off after a day spent in the sand and saltwater. Overall, Haena Beach Park is a must-visit destination for anyone who loves nature, the beach, or just wants to relax in a serene environment. Whether you`re a seasoned surfer, a snorkel enthusiast, or just looking to unwind and soak in some of the island`s natural beauty, Haena Beach Park is sure to impress.

Location: Haena (51 miles from Poipu)

Lumahai Beach

Lumahai Beach is a beautiful stretch of coastline located on the north shore of Kauai. This isolated beach is known for its stunning natural beauty, with crystal-clear waters that sparkle in the sun, powdery white sands, and verdant cliffs that soar high above the shoreline. Lumahai Beach is also famous for its appearance in the 1958 film “South Pacific,” which featured the stunning beach as the backdrop for a romantic scene between lead characters Emile de Becque and Nellie Forbush. Visitors to Lumahai Beach will be enchanted by the peaceful, romantic atmosphere of this beautiful location.

As the beach is quite remote, there are no lifeguards or amenities, so it`s important to come prepared with plenty of water, snacks, and sunscreen. The waves can be strong, so caution should be taken when swimming. One of the best ways to experience the beauty of Lumahai Beach is to take a leisurely stroll along the shoreline, taking in the stunning views and feeling the soft sand beneath your feet. During the winter months, Lumahai Beach is a popular spot for watching surfers brave the powerful waves. For those seeking a little more adventure, Lumahai Beach is also known for its world-class snorkeling opportunities. With its crystal-clear waters and diverse marine life, this picturesque beach is the perfect place to explore the underwater world of the Hawaiian islands. Overall, Lumahai Beach is a true paradise and a must-visit destination for anyone traveling to Kauai. Whether you`re seeking solitude, romance, or adventure, this breathtaking beach has something for everyone.

Location: Hanalei (47.8 miles from Poipu)

Hideaways (Pali Ke Kua) Beach

Pali Ke Kua Beach, also known as Hideaways, is a stunning beach located on the northern shore. This isolated beach offers visitors a true sense of serenity and escapes from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Pali Ke Kua Beach is popular among both locals and tourists for its crystal-clear water, white sand beaches, and lush greenery that surrounds the coastline. The beach is known for being the perfect spot to relax and soak up the sun, or for more active visitors, take a swim or even scuba dive in the calm waters. One of the beach`s unique features is a small natural pool that has formed on the rocky coastline, making it an ideal spot to take a refreshing dip in the tranquil water. In addition to its natural beauty, visitors to Pali Ke Kua Beach can enjoy a variety of activities, including snorkeling, surfing, and paddleboarding. The beach is easily accessible, with a short walk from the parking lot, and offers amenities such as restrooms, showers, and plenty of shade. Pali Ke Kua Beach is also a great spot for picnicking, and visitors can find a number of shaded areas with picnic tables. Overall, Pali Ke Kua Beach is a true hidden gem that offers visitors a unique and unforgettable beach experience. Whether you’re looking for relaxation or adventure, this stunning beach has something for everyone.

Location: Princeville (44.2 miles from Poipu)

Moloa’a Beach

Moloa’a Beach: A Serene and Scenic Destination on Kauai’s North Shore Nestled on the northeastern coast of Kauai, Moloa’a Beach boasts a serene and unspoiled setting that is a far cry from the hustle and bustle of the island’s more popular beaches. But the beach’s allure goes beyond its pristine scenery, it also has a fun pop culture connection. Fans of the classic TV show Gilligan’s Island may recognize Moloa’a Beach as the filming location of the show’s pilot and first episode. Over four days in November 1963, the show’s production team faced a significant challenge in finding a suitable boat on Kauai that could serve as the iconic vessel, S.S. Minnow. Despite the obstacle, they ultimately sourced a boat with a broken engine from a Honolulu shipyard. The team lifted the vessel onto a barge and took it to Moloa’a Beach for the shoot.

But the show ended long ago, and today Moloa’a Beach remains an unspoiled, picturesque beach that is perfect for people who want to escape the crowds and enjoy the natural beauty of Kauai. The beach is dotted by swaying palm trees and marked by a gorgeous, white sandy shoreline that extends to the edge of crystal-clear azure waters. It’s no wonder the beach has earned such an outstanding reputation as a top destination on Kauai.

Visitors can spend their days lounging on the beach, swimming, or snorkeling in the warm, tropical waters. When the tide is low, exploring the reef that juts out of the north end of the beach is a fun adventure. The coral reef is home to a wide variety of marine life, such as colorful fish, and even sea turtles! Hiking enthusiasts can embark on a quick and enjoyable walk to the nearby Moloa’a Valley, complete with lush foliage, guava trees, and flowing streams. For those seeking a bit of shopping, the historic town of Kapa’a is only a short drive away and features unique galleries, boutique shops, and an array of dining options. All in all, Moloa’a Beach offers a serene, peaceful, and unique escape that’s truly a must-visit destination for anyone seeking the perfect beach getaway.

Location: Kilauea (32 miles from Poipu)