Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park
Napali coast

Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park

Hours Daily During Daylight Hours
Entrance Fee None
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Camping Camping permits for Nāpali coast are extremely popular, and often sell out well in advance, particularly during summer. Please plan accordingly.
Fees start at $15 per person per night.
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Description

The Nāpali Coast is a very special place. The pali, or cliffs, provide a rugged grandeur of deep, narrow valleys ending abruptly at the sea. Waterfalls and swift flowing streams continue to cut these narrow valleys while the sea carves cliffs at their mouths. Extensive stone walled terraces can still be found on the valley bottoms where Hawaiians once lived and cultivated taro.

PLEASE VIEW OUR KALALAU TRAIL SAFETY VIDEO HERE.

Permits Required: Camping permits required, special rules apply to Nāpali
Coast camping.   DAY-USE HIKING PERMITS FOR THE KALALAU TRAIL HAVE BEEN DISCONTINUED. DAY HIKING IS NOW ALLOWED WITHOUT A PERMIT UP TO HANAKĀPĪʻAI VALLEY (2 MILES IN FROM TRAILHEAD). ANYONE PROCEEDING BEYOND HANAKĀPĪʻAI VALLEY MUST POSSESS A VALID CAMPING PERMIT.

Services/Facilities: Camping at Hanakoa and Kalalau Valleys by permit only. Composting toilets at Hanakapi‘ai, Hanakoa, Kalalau, Nu‘alolo Kai and Miloli‘i. Rain shelters at Hanakoa, shelters with picnic tables at Miloli‘i. NO DRINKING WATER – stream water must be treated. NO TRASH SERVICE – pack out what you pack in. There is no cell phone coverage in this park.

Commercial uses within State Parks are prohibited.  This includes guided hikes/overnight trips, and boat drop-off or pick-up, except by special permit.

PLEASE NOTE: It is not legal for anyone to provide commercial boat transport to drop off passenger at Kalalau or Milolii camping areas. Please do not enlist the services of these illegal operators, who contribute to overcrowding and excess trash in the park.

REOPENING OF HĀʻENA AND NĀPALI COAST STATE PARKS SET FOR JUNE

Barring bad weather or unforeseen delays in repairs or new management implementation, Hā’ena State Park and the Kalalau Trail in the Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park will reopen to visitors in early-to-mid June. The official reopening date will be announced in May.

The parks have been closed since last April’s devastating flooding which wiped out park infrastructure and caused multiple landslides along the Kalalau Trail. Repairs and new improvements are continuing and are anticipated to be completed in early June.

In accordance with a park master plan and an Environmental Impact Statement adopted in 2018, improvements installed to replace damaged ones will support a new management paradigm which includes reduced parking and visitor limits. This is an effort to decrease the impacts to park resources, mitigate the crushing effects of over-tourism on the adjacent rural community, and enhance visitor experience’s.

The new advance reservation system will be available prior to the park reopening and will coincide with a new county-supported shuttle system. It will allow visitors, with reservations, to access the park without contributing to the traffic and parking woes that have plagued the region for years. Limited parking reservations will also be available, with a new fee system in place. Hawai‘i residents are not subject to the new fees.

Alan Carpenter, Assistant Administrator for the DLNR Division of State Parks explained, “For permitted overnight campers along the Kalalau Trail, the reservation system will function as it always has, and those with permits to camp will NOT be subject to the visitor limits. However, under the new management scheme, overnight visitors to the Napali Coast State Wilderness Park will not be able to leave their vehicles at Hā’ena State Park. They will need to take the shuttle or arrange for other transportation to the trailhead. The Kalalau camping reservation system will be re-activated once the opening date is finalized.”

State Parks maintenance crews have been working over the past few months to stabilize and clear any locations on the Kalalau Trail damaged or impacted by landslides. Since February a volunteer group, the Friends of the Kalalau Trail have conducted twice monthly work days to clear and repair the trail from its beginning at Ke’e Beach to Hanakapiai Stream, which is the first two miles of the trail and the only section that is open without having to get an overnight permit.

Once the parks reopen visitors can expect construction delays on Kūhiō Highway as bridges will still be under repair. The highway is the only way into the area. There will also be new no- parking zones established and enforced outside of the park. Visitors should purchase both their park reservations and a seat on the new shuttle to assure the most efficient and stress-free visit.

State Parks Administrator Curt Cottrell said, “We appreciate and encourage patience as we establish this new system of park access, transportation, and management to mitigate the impacts of traffic on Kauai’s north shore and to make the park experience more enjoyable for residents and visitors alike.”

In April 2018, the Island of Kauaʻi experienced unprecedented rainfall, topping 50″ in two days in some locations. The North Shore region, from Hanalei to Napali, was particularly hard hit. Multiple landslides along the shoreline Kuhiō Highway damaged the main artery and forced closure of the route accessing the rural community and parks beyond Hanalei. The highway is being repaired and is not expected to reopen until sometime in 2019.

11/2018 UPDATE: Repairs and upgrades to make Hāʻena State Park more resilient to future floods, as well as to address public safety and accessibility issues, have begun. A replacement parking lot will be installed with a revised entry to accommodate a long-envisioned shuttle stop. This is an integral part of a desired transportation scheme to alleviate north shore traffic, and is supported by the recently completed Hāʻena State Park Master Plan. Both the improvements, and a new management scheme, including visitor limits, will be in place prior to the reopening of the park sometime in 2019.

The timeline for park repairs and construction is presently estimated to extend into 2019. Repairs of the damaged Kalalau Trail, consisting of washed-out trail sections, debris accumulation, and dense vegetation growth obscuring the route, will be initiated soon and it’s hoped to do this work in the same time-frame as the Hāʻena park repairs.

Both parks remain closed indefinitely.

Gear: Travel light. Lightweight hiking shoes with good traction are popular. Camping gear should include a lightweight sleeping bag or blanket, sleeping pad, tent or tarp, cooking stove and fuel, water purification tablets or filter, first aid kit, mosquito repellent, sunscreen, rain gear, toilet paper, and biodegradable soap.

As of November 2010, a portion of the Kalalau campground in the Nāpali Coast State Wilderness Park is now permanently closed to camping to protect park users from potential rockfall hazards in this area. The closure was implemented following a rockfall hazard assessment and mitigation project which was conducted in Summer of 2010.

Rockfall hazard and no camping signs have been posted in the Kalalau trail segment now off-limits to camping up to Ho’ole’a Waterfall. The closure affects approximately 16 formerly popular campsites along the trail closest to the waterfall. Returning campers should be aware that some sites they formerly enjoyed are now unsafe and off-limits. Transit through the area is still allowed along the existing trail, however hikers are encouraged not to linger in the area.

A replacement set of composting toilets has been installed centrally within the new designated camping area at Kalalau. Campers are also allowed to set up camp on the sand beach fronting the now closed area, so long as they stay well away from the cliffs. Camping is not allowed beyond the waterfall/stream, including within the cave just west of the waterfall, which remains a hazardous rockfall zone.

NEW POLICY AS OF MAY 2010:  In response to public demand and to promote improved public safety, beginning May 19, 2010, permits for Nāpali Coast will be issued for Kalalau only, the preferred destination at the end of the 11-mile Kalalau Trail. However, permits for Kalalau will also be valid for camping at Hanakoa, which is located a little beyond the halfway point of the trail, roughly 6 miles in from the trailhead. Permits specifically for Hanakoa will no longer be issued, but hikers are encouraged to stopover and camp at Hanakoa if they possess a valid permit for Kalalau and they feel the need to break up their trek due to such factors as fatigue, inclement weather, or impending darkness.

Permitted campers are cautioned that the new policy is not a license to camp anywhere along the trail. Hanakoa and Kalalau, which contain facilities to support camping activities, remain the only two authorized areas for camping along the trail. The total number of nights that are allowed for camping in the park is still 5 – so a stopover at Hanakoa, going either direction along the trail, counts as on e of the authorized nights, and therefore reduces the total number of nights permitted at Kalalau.

At the trailhead (in Hā‘ena State Park) can be found restrooms, outdoor showers, trash cans, drinking water and payphone.