Na Pali Coast State Park
The Na Pali Coast in the north-west of the island is one of the most inaccessible parts of the Island of Kauai. The chain of mountains, climbing in places to 3938ft/1200m, forms steep cliffs plunging into the sea, whose beauty can only be appreciated from the water or from the air. Steep valleys on the landward side divide the mountain crests. All attempts, until now, to create a road along the coast have had to be abandoned.
Useful tips: While some rough tracks exist on the fringes of the area, rental car companies place them out of bounds.
Kalalau Trail is an 11 mile/17.5km path originally made and used by the early Hawaiians. This path is difficult and taxing, even for experienced walkers. The climb begins at Haena State Park in the north and ends after almost 11 1/2 miles/18km in Kalalau Valley. To gain an impression of the landscape and vegetation, it is enough to cover the first 2 miles/3km as far as Hanakapiai Beach. This stretch is easier to walk, although after rain it can be slippery - good footwear is needed at all times.Those who want to tackle the whole walk must take a tent and food with them and stay overnight before returning as two to three days should be allowed to complete the 22 miles/35km round distance. The path beyond Hanakapiai is steep, stony and not without danger. At the right time of the year it is possible to sample wild fruits such as mangoes, bananas, guava and apples, which grow beside the path. Campers need permission from the Division of State Parks.