Hanakapiai Falls, Kauai
Categories: Waterfalls, Nature & Parks
Hanakapiai Falls is located in Kauai. Plan to see Hanakapiai Falls and other attractions that appeal to you using our Wainiha vacation route planner.
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We were not overly impressed by this little waterfall. Sure, it is pretty, but not worthy of a special sidetrip. We didn't expect to see another Niagara, but we hoped for more than we found. It must b... read more »
I read reviews about wading across the stream-river in waist deep water-- stupid and dangerous! Turn around. Wait 36 hours minimum after heavy rain-- light rains are normal in Kauai ( ask a local). Th... read more »
30 years ago, when we first hiked up to Hanakapi'ai Falls, it was a remote secret. No longer. With guidebooks, signs and Trip Advisor, the word is out. But, this is still one of our favorite hikes. It... read more »
Difficult hike if your not an experienced hiker. Well worth the trip if you are in reasonable shape. Breathtaking views when you get there. Make sure to bring enough water in. There is no way to get more water until you finish the hike back where you started. It's a total of 8 miles of slippery difficult ups and downs, so make sure you have good shoes, plenty of water, and are prepared to get soaked. Your shoes, socks, and feet will be drenched be the time you get to the falls.
Amazing hike with incredible views and a picturesque waterfall at the end. Bring plenty of water and be prepared to get wet. You'll want to swim in the waterfall at the end of the hike in. Make sure to wear proper footwear that does well in wet conditions. If you are not a seasoned hiker or are not in good shape then this is not a hike you should go on. The 8+ mile round-trip is very strenuous. It is most definitely worth the effort though. Just make sure you are properly prepared and in good enough shape to handle a difficult hike with large elevation changes and a mile of climbing boulders and crossing streams. If you are not a seasoned hiker then I recommend just the hike into the beach and back. The beach is wonderful but playing in the surf is not recommended and very dangerous. All that being said if a difficult hike with amazing scenery is your thing then this is a can't miss while on Kauai
This is an awesome and great hike to do, don't listen to Jay Dorrance's utter gibberish. For one, how brutal a hike can be is individual, and your car can be broken into anywhere on the island (his off topic review should actually be removed, not featured). The hike itself is awesome as it offers several great vantage points on the way in to the halfway point, where you reach a perfectly idyllic beach. From the beach you start climbing in towards the waterfall for another couple of miles. On the hike up you will pass by bamboo forests, orchids and all kinds of cool wildlife. You will have to cross a small stream/river a few times on the way up, so be prepared for wet feet. When you reach the waterfall, you can go for a quick dip and cool off in a completely amazing cauldron formed by the waterfall. This is a must do if you enjoy hiking, nature and picturesque views galore :)
I don't like giving a hike or waterfall a 1 star, but this need to be read. The Hike to Hanakapia is brutal. Last year, over 100 people had to be helicoptered out. The falls are amazing but the trail features elevation changes, sucking mud and you have to cross a stream that has a tendency to flash flood. I have carried out a couple of people from the trail and I have gotten to the point that I can't carry more. There is one other issue: parking. I have seen cars broken into in broad daylight. They were lucky enough to get parking.The place is VERY CROWDED. They are going to put in a north shore shuttle, when they do ...use it. BTW, I also have seen rocks fall into the pool under the falls....if you get into the pool, heads up.
Be prepared for a very beautiful and strenuous hike. It is about 4.5 miles from the parking lot to the falls, so expect to hike about 10 miles. If you are used to a more linear type of hike, (the kind where you hike up to a summit, and then have a sort of breather by simply going down) this will just kick your butt with the constant uphills and downhill treks.... and OMG i gotta go up again?? Tip: If you are going to do a lot of these types of hikes, I suggest getting a nice water shoe built for hiking as well. Brands such as KEEN and Chaco may be a bit pricey, but your feet will thank you later. I had used a regular shoe, so I hiked with wet feet for miles. I paid for it with blisters all over, as well as hiking uncomfortably for hours with water logged shoes. I did purchase a pair of keens after this trip, since I do plan on future hikes like this. Also, check weather reports before embarking. We were lucky with nice , dry weather. I imagine this trail can be slippery and muddy in the rain, making it even more difficult. We brought insect repellent and didn't really use it, but we did receive a few nasty bug bites. It wasn't too bad though.. Have fun and enjoy the view!!
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