Wow! This truly is the mother of all beaches!
I heard those words from my wife standing beside me as we first walked out on Kauai’s westernmost point, Polihale Beach.
We had talked about coming out a few days before and to tell you the truth I wasn’t sure I wanted to come. I had heard stories about people getting stuck on the road. I had heard it was hot. I had heard there was no shade. I had heard there were no trees. Suddenly all that didn’t matter and I was plenty glad we did come.
Yes the road had a few sketchy sections. Yes its was hot. No there were no trees or shade. But oh what a glorious beach!
Polihale is one of Hawaii’s longest stretch of Beach. Its a remote, wild beach characterized by rough waves, rapid drops and rip currents. There is no reef barrier to protect the beach from waves. The only safe spot for a swim is at Queen’s Pond located about midway along the shoreline. We happened to visit on a very calm day and there were some people swimming but from what I’ve read it can be pretty dangerous.
The northern end of the beach lies at the start of the Na Pali Coast with its world famous cliffs. Although we didn’t stay that long from what I’ve seen of other photos this is a great place to take sunset photos especially when the last golden light of the day plays on the cliffs.
Because of its remoteness, its often not crowded. It makes a great place to wander the beach and get lost in its beauty.
Even the local dogs like watching the waves roll in.
Or if you’re more energetic there is plenty of room to run.
On a clear day the Forbidden Island of Ni’ihau is visible offshore with Lehue Rock to the North.
When we were there a group of locals had rolled out onto the beach and set up their shade tents. I stopped and talked with them for a little while. They were pretty friendly.
Despite the great beauty of this beach, I found it a bit tough to come away with a photo I was really happy with. This was one of my favorites and gives weight to the adage that sometimes simpler is better.
Despite some of the difficulties in getting there, Polihale is well worth the effort.