Secluded beach proves unforgettable

  • Bill Buley / The Garden Island

    A runner moves along the shoreline at Polihale on Sunday morning.

  • Bill Buley / The Garden Island

    The setting sun casts its glow across the ocean at Polihale Beach

  • Bill Buley / The Garden Island

    The moon rises over the mountains that rise over Polihale Beach.

  • Bill Buley / The Garden Island

    Footprints in the sand at Polihale Beach.

  • Bill Buley / The Garden Island

    The setting sun at Polihale Beach.


That one word says it all about this state beach park on the Westside.

An endless ocean before you, towering mountains behind you.

Spectacular sunsets, amazing sunrises.

Dolphins dancing and whales rising.

Infinite stars in the clear night sky, and brilliant moonlight.

The cliffs of the Napali Coast seem so close you could reach them.

Niihau and Lehua sit just beyond.

A beach of hot, gold sand that stretches on and on and it seems you could walk forever.

It is a different world — a place unlike any other.

As a friend said, Polihale is like stepping back in time.

It is here you will take a deep breath, look around, and shake your head in disbelief at the beauty.

And you will ask yourself why you didn’t visit here long, long ago.

Yes, it’s difficult to get there, down a potholed, bumpy, rutted dirt road for five miles. Every now and then there is talk that the road should be paved. But that would be a terrible mistake and it must never happen. It would create a freeway of rental cars, which as it is now, are generally prohibited by their companies from being driven there, so rough is this stretch that some vehicles that venture there are never seen again.

One must be willing to endure at least some trouble to reach such a magical place. It must never be easy.

Whatever it takes, one must experience Polihale at least once in a lifetime.

Then, you always have it in your heart and mind. You can take it with you, always.

But know this: You won’t be the same. You will never forget what you saw, what you felt, what you heard.

It will stir what’s inside.

Polihale will beckon you to return.

If you are one of the lucky ones, you will.

  1. Major Lee Hung January 22, 2020 3:48 am Reply

    Such a special place everybody must go at some point,,, road so rough some cars never seen again,,, don’t dare pave the road.
    Got it.

  2. douglas henry January 22, 2020 9:33 am Reply

    the road is in the worst shape ever. Don’t go.

  3. respect Kauai January 22, 2020 11:40 am Reply

    Nothing to see at Polihale. Please save your time and go to Poipu beach or Kalapaki… wink,wink, : ) And, PLEASE people STOP calling it “Poli’s”.. very disrespectful.. There are many locals that will kik your arse if they hear you call it by that name, just a tip.

  4. respect Kauai January 22, 2020 11:51 am Reply

    Move along folks, nothing to see here at Polihale… better off going to Poipu or Lydgate..wink,wink : ) Just kidding, but if you do go please be respectful!! The last time I was out there I saw more trash than I’ve ever seen in over 20 years. And PLEASE people STOP calling it “Poli’s”, I don’t think you realize how disrespectful that is and if you say it to the wrong person you may regret it later, just a tip.

  5. Kauaidoug January 22, 2020 12:34 pm Reply

    Very nice. You sum up the magic of Polihale perfectly. Never seen the night sky like Polihale. An overnight camp is a must to truly appreciate Polihale. It’s a world apart on our beautiful island. Lucky live Kaua’i

  6. Lucy Allan January 24, 2020 7:50 am Reply

    I totally agree. It is a magical place. We have camped there many times and the stars are unbelievable. We have also seen surf that takes your breath away. The walk to the end of the beach is my favorite. Sadly, there seems to be no patrol with many people camping without a permit, so it is first come, first served.

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