Polihali state park beach. There is one main road that goes around Kauai and because the Na Pali cliffs are in the way it doesn't even complete the circle. So of course we had to go to each end. The east side is popular because of everyone hiking the trail. The west side is where you go for solitude.
The paved road turns to a dirt road in the middle of nowhere. It is not great, but not terrible (caveat emptor, we had no rain for 5 days, it could be a muddy mess). At the end you get all this beach, basically to yourself. There were maybe 10 people on the whole beach, only one was topless.
This a spot that I remember from our previous trip-the car got stuck in the sand and crankiness happened...and was captured on film. We were clever enough to park in the parking lot, no crankiness this time.
I had checked out travel guides from the library a month ago and skimmed them but on island relied on those free vacation guides. Just remember that here in Kauai the scale of the attractions is toned down. The following four items were on the top ten do not miss list.
The swinging pedestrian bridge! Yes, it is a nicely built bridge and you can do that thing where you hop up and down, or stomp across it to make it hard for the other person. There are of course a ton of places to buy stuff all over the island, my favorite was Aloha Spice Company on the town side of the bridge. Nice variety but not overwhelming.
The tunnel of trees. We kind of missed it the first time we drove through it and had to go back. They have planted the trees in a lovely organized fashion so it looks like a tunnel.
The famous water spout-when the waves come in they blast through the hole and make a lovely spout.
Reminds me a bit of Yellowstone...
Next is the coffee plantation. We don't actually drink coffee, but know folks who do and the self guided tour was free.
The tour is super cute
This is the picking machine that shakes the trees and collects the beans
Lets not forget that Kauai is the land of waterfalls. Although you don't get close, the most easily accessible is Opekaa Falls
Directly across the road you learn about the river it drains into
and how it was a sacred site and agriculturally important.
There is even a little bit left of the sacred building
Though really not much. If you don't stop to read the sign you might miss it. I'm afraid these builders had nothing on the Incans....but then they didn't have to stand up to earthquakes either.