Maha’ulepu Heritage Trail + Kawelikoa Bay Extension

The Mahaʻulepu Heritage Trail goes from Shipwreck Beach by the Hyatt Regency Kauai to Punahoa Point (3.7 mi.) but being that I was nearing the end of 2017, I was trying to choose trails that connected to other trails so that I could add more hikes to my 2017 40 hike goal list. I ended up adding the trail to Makauwahi Cave and connecting it to the trail to Kawelikoa Bay for a grand total of 6.1 miles (according to my AllTrails App).

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Let me just put this out there and say that this trail was breathtaking. I’ve been to Kauai at least 40 times in the last 5 years, and this by far was my best adventure yet. The trail starts off at Shipwreck beach where there is tons of parking that goes with tons of tourists. I was a bit weary for the first mile because of the amount people on the trail, but afterward, there were fewer people willing to venture beyond.

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Essentially, you follow the coastline until the end but you do need to walk through the Poipu Golf course and a heiau (not my favorite part – honestly, I sprinted through). If I could’ve I would have added an extra hour just to take pictures, but we were racing against the weather (in true Kauaʻi fashion).

Tips

  • Wear comfortable shoes – the foundation varies from sand to lava rock, Kauaʻi red dirt to coral
  • Bring a rain jacket – on Kauaʻi, it rains one minute and then it’s bright and sunny the next
  • Take the trail between the shoreline and the farm as you get closer to Kawelikoa so that you avoid walking on the beach for a mile


 

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