Na Pali Coast Table of Contents
napali coast

Where is the NaPali Coast Located?

On the northwestern portion of Kauai Island in Hawaii, the NaPali Coast stretches to cover the most beautiful parts of this Pacific island, featuring some of the most unique landscapes you can find in the area, with verdant mountains meeting the pacific in a display of primal Hawaiian beauty. 

The Napali Coast is a beautiful stretch of 17 miles along Kauai’s North Shore. This northwestern portion of Kauai features streams and waterfalls along with sea cliffs dotted with the most beautiful natural vegetation and old agricultural terraces. 

Those terraces are there since the ancient Hawaiian peoples made this area their home, living off agriculture and fishing while among the beautiful emerald cliffs of the Kalalau Valley, their ancestral home for many years.

If you are looking to explore the entire Napali Coast, most of it is only accessible by sea or by air. However, some of the challenging hikes can also take you to some the remote parts of the island within Na Pali.

NaPali Coast Tours

NaPali Coast tours are an inspiring experience for people of all ages and backgrounds. The NaPali coast has been a prominent backdrop for various Hollywood movies. The sheer sea cliffs are covered in green foliage and cascade beautifully into the sea.

There are many tours that will take you along the Na Pali coast. You can swim, snorkel, and catamaran in the ocean or you can see it all by air in a helicopter tour. We have included additional details and tour providers in the list below.

Na Pali Coast

Hiking on the NaPali Coast

napali coast hike

There are a variety of hikes in Kauai that visitors can take to explore a portion of everything this beautiful coastline has to offer. These hikes range from shorter day hikes to longer multiday excursions.

If you plan to make a multiday trip you should plan months in advance because camping permits are required in the area. Our favorite hikes in the area include the Napali Coast Viewpoint, Hanakapiai Falls, and the Kalalau Beach trail. All of these trails begin at the Ke’e trailhead.

Napali Coast Viewpoint

This half mile hike takes you to a beautiful view of the Napali Coast with relative ease. The trail is well maintained and you can make the trek relatively quickly.

Although this is a short hike, it is still important to wear durable shoes because the trail can get muddy and occasional obstacles can block the path.

The forest vegetation provides a beautiful backdrop to the spectacular cliffs of the coast. This is an incredible family hike if you are looking for fun easy afternoon activity. 

na pali hike viewpoint

Hanakapiai Falls

Hanakapiai Falls

The next hike on our list is Hanakapiai Falls. This 4 mile trip (8 miles roundtrip) takes the adventurous traveler to one of the most spectacular waterfalls on the island.

Even though this hike takes a little longer, the views are well worth the work. This trail begins at the Ke’e trailhead and continues along the coast for almost 2 miles.  There you will be able to break off and make the 2 mile trek through the Hanakapiai Valley to the waterfall. This portion requires numerous stream crossings as well as falling rocks near the waterfall, so be cautious as you make the trek.

When you arrive, you’ll have the pleasure of enjoying a 300 foot waterfall, as well as a beautiful pool to take a swim.

The Kalalau Trail

Hiking through the Kalalau Trail is the only way to access the Napali Coast. This long and adventurous trip makes Hiking on the Napali Coast a rewarding experience with a clear and amazing goal. Take into account this is a 22 miles hike, where you’ll be able to observe the Waimea Canyon.

This trail begins at the same Ke’e trailhead, but you will not turn off until you reach the end. The Kalalau Trail takes you along the coast, through the Kalalau Valley, along the Napali Coast, and right up onto the beach. This trail is not for everybody, so be sure to do your research before attempting to make the hike.

Watching Napali From The Kokee State Park Overlook

The Kokee State Park is a great place if you are looking for a way to check out the Napali Coast without the commitment of a hike. It provides unbeatable views with very little effort. Here you can also find a lodge with food and a gift shop if you are looking for reminders of this once in a lifetime trip. A small entrance fee is required for non residents of Hawaii, but it is worth the money for views like these.

Napali Boat Tours

Boat tours are one of the best ways to see everything the Napali coast has to offer. Many of the tour companies provide a variety of packages to fit everyone’s needs. These tours can range from a catamaran down the coast to an all inclusive day trip that takes you to multiple locations on the island,  and allows guests to explore sea caves and other natural wonders. There are also many options for snorkeling and swimming off the Napali Coast. Top it all off with a sunset over the Pacific Ocean and it’s sure to be a trip for the books. These boat tours are an easy and affordable way to see more of the island, so don’t miss your chance to experience it on your next Kauai vacation.

Holo Holo Charters

At Holo Holo Charters the memories should last a lifetime, not the trip getting there. Our four boats, Leila, Holo Holo, and Ocean Adventurer I & II, get you to the action quicker than anybody else, so you have more time to snorkel, sightsee, relax and enjoy the pristine waters and spectacular cliffs of Kauai’s Napali Coast, and the only tour available to the “forbidden island” of Niihau

Holo Holo Charters offers five great Napali Coast and Niihau tour options to choose from — so you can select the tour that fits your vacation schedule and budget. Call our office toll-free at 1-800-848-6130 if you have any questions or would like help deciding which tour is perfect for you or book online at: www.holoholokauaiboattours.com

Kauai Helicopter Tours

Imagine soaring above the flourishing green mountains of Kauai on a private helicopter tour. There are a number of qualified pilots in very reputable companies throughout the island that can make this dream a reality. With an hour long tour, guests are able to enjoy an aerial view of the entire island.

Our favorite companies allow visitors to choose whether they want the doors on or off. This can lead to an exhilarating flight that you definitely won’t forget! These trips often book out months in advance, so if you are interested in taking a Napali Coast helicopter tour in Kauai, then book your flight today.

Safari Helicopter Tours are the gold standard for aerial tours in Hawaii. Their top of the line equipment put together with their expert staff means that your tour will be professional, enjoyable, and safe.

With over 33 years of experience in the industry, their perfect track record speaks for itself. With Safari you will be able to experience unobstructed views as well as a noise cancelling two way communication system with your pilot to ensure there are no issues throughout the duration of your flight. 

This is one of the most affordable helicopter companies on the island and they will even record your entire flight from four strategically placed cameras for you to enjoy after your flight. We love working with Safari Helicopter tours and we are confident that you will too! Book your flight today!

Things to Do on the Napali Coast

Snorkeling in Kauai

Snorkeling is one of the most popular activities on the Napali Coast. With guided tours you can expect to see an abundance of beautiful aquatic life.

It is not uncommon to see large schools with vibrant colors swim by as you watch the massive Hawaiian sea turtles glide majestically through the water.

Other guests have reported dolphins, whales, seals, and so much more, so don’t miss out on your opportunity to explore one of earths most abundant and beautiful resources. 

kauai na pali snorkeling

Explore the Kauai Sea Caves

napali kauai sea cave exploration

Sea caves are a staple for anyone visiting the Napali Coast. In the summer months, many of the boat tours will take you through these majestic arches cut deep into the sides of the sea cliffs.

Towering rock formations clash with the surf of the island creating a truly unique spectacle. Some of the most popular sea caves are the Open-Ceiling Cave, and the Waiahuakua Cave.

Scuba Diving in Kauai

If snorkeling just isn’t enough to satisfy your need for adventure, try scuba diving in the beautiful reefs off the Napali Coast. Here you won’t just see the animals, you will be able to swim alongside and be a part of this spectacular underwater world.

There is nothing like exploring the ocean floor and watching as wildlife glide smoothly through the water above. If you are interested in scuba diving in Kauai there are a variety of different tours and classes that you can take to safely explore this truly remote side of the island.

kauai na pali scuba diving

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