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4 Best Hikes On The North Shore Of Kauai, Hawaii


Modified: December 28, 2023

by Cassie Swearingen


The North Shore of Kauai, Hawaii is a paradise for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. With its majestic mountains, lush rainforests, and breathtaking coastal views, this region offers an abundance of hiking trails that will leave you in awe of its beauty. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or just starting out, the North Shore has something to offer everyone.

In this article, we will explore the four best hikes on the North Shore of Kauai. From the iconic Kalalau Trail to the hidden gem of Hanakapiai Falls, these hikes will take you on an adventure through picturesque landscapes, cascading waterfalls, and panoramic vistas. So, grab your hiking boots, pack some water and snacks, and get ready to discover the natural wonders of Kauai’s North Shore.

Kalalau Trail

The Kalalau Trail is one of the most iconic and challenging hikes in Hawaii. Spanning 11 miles along the breathtaking Na Pali Coast, this trail offers awe-inspiring views of towering cliffs, lush valleys, and secluded beaches. The trail takes you through diverse terrain, including rugged rocky paths and stunning coastal stretches. Make sure to obtain a permit in advance to embark on this epic adventure.

Hanakapiai Falls Trail

If you’re looking for a shorter yet equally rewarding hike, Hanakapiai Falls Trail is perfect for you. The 4-mile round trip trail leads you through lush tropical forests, stunning river crossings, and ultimately to the majestic 300-foot Hanakapiai Falls. Take a refreshing dip in the pool at the base of the falls and relish in the beauty of this natural wonder.

Na Pali Coast State Wilderness Park

Na Pali Coast State Wilderness Park offers a number of incredible hiking trails, each showcasing the rugged beauty of the coastline. Whether you choose to hike the challenging Awaawapuhi Trail or the scenic Hanakoa Falls Trail, you’ll be treated to panoramic views of the turquoise waters, towering cliffs, and cascading waterfalls. Don’t forget your camera to capture the unforgettable vistas!

Lumahai Beach to Hanalei Bay Trail

This picturesque coastal hike takes you from Lumahai Beach to Hanalei Bay, offering stunning views along the way. As you meander along this leisurely trail, you’ll be treated to sights of white sandy beaches, crystal-clear waters, and vibrant tropical vegetation. Take your time and enjoy the tranquil beauty of the North Shore on this scenic hike.

When planning your visit to the North Shore of Kauai, make sure to include these four best hikes to fully immerse yourself in the natural wonders that this island paradise has to offer. So put on your hiking boots, grab your camera, and get ready for an unforgettable adventure through the 4 Best Hikes on the North Shore of Kauai, Hawaii!


The North Shore of Kauai, Hawaii is a hiker’s paradise offering some of the most breathtaking trails in the world. With its lush landscapes, towering waterfalls, and stunning coastal views, it’s no wonder that adventurers flock to this part of the island.

From the iconic Kalalau Trail to the lesser-known Hanakapiai Falls, there are numerous hiking options available that cater to all skill levels. Whether you’re a seasoned hiker seeking a challenging trek or a nature enthusiast looking for a leisurely stroll, the North Shore has something for everyone.

So, pack your hiking boots, grab your backpack, and embark on an unforgettable journey through the mesmerizing trails of the North Shore of Kauai. Your next adventure awaits!


1. What are the best times to hike on the North Shore of Kauai?

The best times to hike on the North Shore of Kauai are during the drier months, which typically span from April to September. It’s important to check weather conditions and forecasts before embarking on any hike to ensure optimal safety and enjoyment.

2. Are there any permits required for hiking in this area?

For certain trails on the North Shore, such as the Kalalau Trail, a permit is required. It is recommended to make reservations well in advance, as permits are limited and in high demand. Other trails may not require permits, but it’s always a good idea to check with local authorities or visitor information centers.

3. Are these hikes suitable for beginners?

While some hikes on the North Shore can be challenging and require a certain level of fitness and experience, there are also plenty of beginner-friendly options available. Trails like the Wai Koa Loop Trail and the Hoopii Falls Trail offer manageable distances and moderate difficulty levels, making them ideal for those new to hiking.

4. What essential items should I bring on these hikes?

Some essential items to bring on hikes in this area include plenty of water, sunscreen, insect repellent, a hat, sturdy footwear, a map or GPS device, and snacks. It’s also advisable to pack a small first aid kit and to let someone know your itinerary before heading out on any hike.