Located on the north shore of Kaua’i in the Hawaiian Islands, Ke’e Beach is one of the world’s most beautiful beaches.
The sparkling waters and white sand are magnificent. Add to that towering verdant cliffs, feathery ironwood trees among the palms, and the mellow Aloha spirit, and you have heaven on earth.
Ke’e Beach (pronounced Kay-ay) is part of Ha’ena State Park, a 230 acre park. It abuts Na Pali Coast State Park. In addition to the ocean delights, there are extraordinary trails, ancient Hawaiian sites, sea caves, and a garden preserve.
Kaua’i info here.
To get to the beach is a Hawaiian adventure. The “highway” is a narrow road with many one lane bridges that traverse taro fields in the Hanalei Valley. The road continues to narrow, with occasional ocean views and abundant tropical lushness, until it dead ends in a parking lot.
The parking lot is a wonderful mess of cars parked in every direction, obstructed by trees and tree roots, and a muddy, holey surface. Very Hawaiian.
Because the beauty is utterly breathtaking here, I have noticed it has become more popular over the years. Therefore, an early arrival is advised.
The beach is a reef lagoon, with crystal clear, calm, and shallow water, ideal for snorkeling. Turtles and many colorful fish abound.
Beyond the lagoon are rougher waters with strong currents and warning signs.
Also stemming from the beach area is Kalalau Trail, still the most awesome views I have ever hiked. Backpackers and day hikers enjoy this trail for the first two mile stretch, but after that permits are required.
More trail info here.
If you ever visit the “Garden Isle,” it is well worth a trip to the north side. Just follow the road west until it ends.
Photo credit: Athena Alexander unless otherwise noted