Kauai beaches are the main attraction of Kauai. To understand the beauty of the beaches in Kauai, it is important to understand the formation of the island itself. Kauai, Hawaii’s oldest island, was formed by what are now extinct volcanoes erupting on the ocean floor. Over time, the island of Kauai was formed, allowing heavy rain to erode deep valleys and produce vibrant tropical plants, trees and flowers. Towering peaks, the highest being over 5,000 feet, surround the island and provide a stunning view among the glistening, clear water of the ocean.
Beaches in Kauai abound, and some hard to reach, while others are quite popular places. The North Shore of Kauai is home to big waves during the winter, making it a popular place for experienced surfers. On the South Shore, the ocean delivers high surf during the summer, but nothing compared to that of the North Shore. Anini Beach (formerly called Wanini Beach until the ‘W’ fell off the sign and locals preferred to change the name rather than fix the sign) on the North Shore is a serene stretch of beach that is protected by Hawaii’s largest coral reef. It is not uncommon to see someone seemingly stand on water after snorkeling a ways out to the reef.
Poipu Beach is a perfect place to get up close and personal with the fish. The beach offers a sandy and grassy shoreline that is protected by rocky jetties, with reef and sand underwater. Snorkelers can anticipate the pleasure of having fish come right up to them expecting food. The winter season is the best time to visit Poipu because the water is calm, but the summer time is wonderful as well. Any season in which you choose to visit Poipu Beach, you can bet that many others have the same idea, and that helps make it one of the busiest beaches on Kauai. Makua Beach, better known as Tunnels Beach, provides a shallow inner reef for children, and an outer reef for advanced divers and snorkelers. The mountain views parallel the beautiful views of the ocean, and trees provide shade along the beach.
Lydgate Park offers calm conditions that are perfect for children, with man made ponds that keep the high surf out. The park also has a playground for the little ones, and a perfect view of surfers at Wailua Beach. Kalapaki Beach is a natural harbor with a long stretch of sand, and it is not uncommon to see paddle boarders taking in the mild waves. Kee Beach is the last beach that is accessible by car on the North Shore before the road turns into the Na Pali Coast. The beach offers an ocean lagoon, protected from waves by reefs and a stunning view of the mountains that rise above. Polihale Beach provides a seven mile stretch of sand that makes for the perfect stroll along the ocean. The view of the Na Pali mountains jutting out above the sea certainly does not hurt the view, but this remote beach has strong currents and a dangerous shorebreak.