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Planning a visit to Kauai? We regularly add news and information about events, activities, and places to see on The Garden Isle.

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Sheila Heathcote has lived in Hawaii since 1986. She's a published author on the topic of Kauai and the owner of Hale O Nanakai Bed & Breakfast.

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Saturday
Apr302011

East Kauai's Rugged Coastline beckons the Adventurer

The spectacular east coast near Kealia up toward Anahola shows Kauai in all of its rugged splendor.

This time, ditch the bike and hoof it. Park at the marked parking area just off Highway 56 past the entrances to the zillion dollar Kealia Kai development where you will see a  green and white hiking and parking sign.

Follow the bike path to the left. Where the bike path ends, several dirt paths lead toward a northerly hillside. Take the one closest to the tiny cove and you will traverse through long cane grass until you come to a very old gate.

This was the old road to Anahola – once part of the Kealia Plantation’s road and railway system.  Since the Kealia Kai development, there are no longer roads to access the coastline. However, there are roads that begin in Anahola in the hawaiian Homelands district. When you pop out of the overgrowth a dirt road leads to the right.

This is a spectacular secret and secluded cove, excellent for snorkeling and viewing wildlife – including this young monk seal (pictured at right). This bay lies between Ahihi and Anapalau Points and were the Kamalomaloo Stream once drained.

Snorkeling from the small sandy side of the cove to the northern side is the best bet as currents tend to run strongly from north to south. There are numerous gigantic coral heads and ancient, rusty railroad ties, whispering from the watery depths about the history of the area. The southern side of the cove has poor visibility due to sediment degradation, but it is an excellent swimming spot.

Traversing the dirt road further north there is another bay where the beach meets steep walls of sand and red dirt, almost as if it has been scoured out. Could this be the work of our recent tsunami?

Return to the bike path along ancient Hawaiian coastal trails and drink in many beautiful viewpoints all along the coast back toward Donkey Beach and Paliku Point.