Polihale State Park is the end of the line on the West Side, and my favorite spot to get away from it all. Despite the trek, this remote beach is a local favorite and well worth it. At the end of Highway 50 on Kauai’s West Side, an easy-to-miss dirt road grants access to 17 miles of white sand beaches (the longest stretch of beach in Hawaii) and 140 acres of natural coastal lands. Polihale is famous for near constant sunshine, endless pale gold sand dunes, and emerald waters. The silhouette of the Forbidden Island of Niihau visible from the beach serves as an exclamation mark on the very Hawaiian scene you’re taking in.
Getting to Polihale
Once you turn off the paved Highway 50, It’s slow going on a rough, sloppy road to get there. After bouncing down the road for ~3 miles, you’ll encounter a large monkeypod tree. The road branching to the left brings you to Queen’s Pond, a series of mellow, family-safe tide pools partially protected by a fringing reef. It’s the perfect spot to bring my granddaughter. If you veer to the right, ~4 more miles of road ultimately brings you to the most western part of Na Pali you can reach by car, the Polihale State Park. There you’ll find picnic areas, showers, and restrooms.
West Side Kauai Beaches
Though I’m always up for the trip to Polihale, there’s no shortage of other remarkable beaches on the West Shore because it’s virtually all beach! That’s just one of the features of life on the West Side. The year-round sunny weather is the perfect complement to the endless beach. While Princeville on the North Shore gets ~78 inches of rain a year, Kekaha on the West Side is getting a more beach-friendly ~38 inches annually.
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