Beaches West of Poipu
Polihale is located at the western end of Kauai and is known for over fifteen miles of white sandy beach that averages about 300 feet from the barrier dunes to the surf line. Sand dunes along the beach and reach heights nearing 100 feet. There is no reef barrier that protects the beach from the open ocean. The only relatively safe place for a swim is at Queen`s Pond, a shallow pond with a sandy bottom surrounded by a protecting reef. Polihale is framed on the west end by the Na Pali cliffs and offers a stunning sunset view toward the Forbidden Island of Niihau. Polihale is a magical place to camp out and stargaze. It is well worth the long bumpy dirt road drive to get there.
Location: Mana (32.2 miles from Poipu)
Salt Pond Beach is a beautiful beach located on the southern coast a 20-minute drive west of Poipu. It is known for its stunning views and abundant wildlife. The beach is divided into two main sections, the Pavillion side, and the Airport side. On the Pavilion side, visitors can enjoy a variety of activities such as snorkeling, paddle boarding, and watching a variety of boats and ships sailing by. The Pavilion side is also known for its abundance of wildlife, including honu (green sea turtles), monk seals, and other species of fish. Red salt ponds located next to the beach are also a popular sight. In addition to the activities and wildlife, Salt Pond Beach also has an interesting history. The beach was once home to a thriving salt industry, with salt ponds located on the beach. The salt ponds were used to harvest and sell salt to the local community and to ships sailing to Honolulu. This tradition of salt-making has continued to this day, with locals still harvesting and selling salt. Overall, Salt Pond Beach is a must-visit destination for any traveler looking to experience the beauty and history of Kauai. With its stunning views, abundant wildlife, and interesting history, it is sure to provide a memorable experience.
Location: Hanapepe (13.7miles from Poipu)
Kekaha Beach is a picturesque, golden sand beach located on the western coast of Kauai. Measuring at over three miles long, it’s the longest beach on the island and boasts a stunning natural beauty that attracts visitors from all around the world. The beach is known for its tranquil and serene atmosphere, offering a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The area enjoys a warm, sunny climate throughout the year, making it an ideal spot to relax and soak up some rays.
One of the main attractions of Kekaha Beach is its fantastic waves that provide an excellent opportunity for surfing. The waves at Kekaha Beach can range from gentle and welcoming to large and powerful, making it suitable for surfers of all skill levels. The beach is frequented by experienced surfers who can be seen catching and riding the larger waves that come through. Kekaha Beach is also popular amongst those who enjoy swimming, bodyboarding, and snorkeling. The waters are generally calm and clear, allowing for excellent visibility of the marine life below.
Visitors can also witness the area’s rugged and dramatic landscape from the beach, including viewing spectacular sunsets over the ocean. Facilities at Kekaha Beach include restrooms, outdoor showers, and picnic tables. There are also lifeguards on duty during peak season, making it a safe and enjoyable destination for families. Overall, Kekaha Beach is an excellent place to relax and enjoy the natural beauty of Kauai, whether by catching a wave or simply soaking in the sun. The combination of stunning natural scenery, reliable surf, and great amenities make it a must-visit destination for anyone looking to experience the best of what Kauai has to offer.
Location: Kekaha (22.8 miles from Poipu)
You may have heard about the pristine white sands and crystal-clear waters of other beaches on the island, but Glass Beach has something unique to offer. As you step onto the beach, you`ll be mesmerized by the kaleidoscope of colors spread across the black sand. That`s because Glass Beach is home to multicolored glass particles that have been softened by the ocean`s waves, leaving behind vibrant hues and dulled edges. Keep your eyes peeled for your favorite color, whether it`s the elusive blue that`s not always easy to find or any other hue that catches your eye. You`ll leave feeling like you`ve pocketed a piece of the rainbow.
The interesting backstory of how the glass fragments ended up at Glass Beach adds to the allure of this stunning spot. In the past, an old dump nearby was responsible for the glass debris that was eventually swept onto the shore. While the beauty of the glass is undeniable, it`s important to remember that taking only a few pieces as a souvenir is respectful to the environment and the other visitors who come to enjoy this unique beach. Although Glass Beach may not be the largest or most spectacular beach on Kauai, it`s secluded location and colorful beauty make it a must-visit destination. Keep in mind, the beach is not in the most beautiful location. There is an oil storage facility right behind it. If you`re interested in exploring beyond the beach, park near the old cemetery and take a short hike downhill to the lava shelf. You`ll spot metal and glass embedded in the cliff`s sides to the right and find yourself mesmerized by the playful churning of the ocean to the left near the lava arch. Keep an eye out for blowholes and set your hike for low tide to fully explore this beautiful area.
Location: Eleele (12.3 miles from Poipu)