UNCOVER LARSEN'S BEACH, HAWAII
Tucked away at the shores of Kauai island, Larsen's Beach is not your regular travel spot. Rocky shallow water and challenging access attract more adventurous visitors, who uncover the serenity of this Hawaiian destination
Words: Aleksandra Georgieva
Photography: Justin Aikin
08 July 2020
Ever dreamed of visiting a beach tucked away from most people? We have got just the right spot for you, hidden from sight at the northeastern shore of Hawaii’s Kauai island.
Larsen's Beach is not your popular tourist attraction. In fact, it is not even fully accessible by road. The stretch of sand is backed by trees and bushes so you’d have to make your way past the greenery to uncover the coastline scenic view. The path that leads near the beach is a dirt road, limiting visitors so the one thing you will escape from at the island are the crowds.
Pakala Point is a lava rock that merges into the ocean, cutting the beach in half. Right before there is an opening in the reef, known as Pakala Channel, serving as a passageway for the nearshore water to flow into the ocean. The rip current in the area is so strong that swimming is prohibited. It is extremely easy to get caught up in the current, yet the serenity of Larsen’s Beach makes the place worth visiting.
Indulge into the escape of tourist destinations and noisy cities. If you are an experienced snorkeler, you could wait for calm ocean conditions to snorkel in the rocky shallows. Remember to stay away from the Pakala Channel and be aware that the beach has no lifeguards.
Note that if you plan on visiting, not everybody finds it easy to get to Larsen’s Beach. Access is challenging since the relatively easy trail leading to the beach cuts through a private property, owned by Waioli Corp. and leased by Paradise Ranch. Avoiding the fence that stops people from trespassing in the ranch, means you are faced with an alternative route. Yet, that trail is much steeper, regarded as challenging and potentially unsafe.
If you are among the hiking adventurers, who wish to visit Larsen’s Beach, know that you might encounter some local families, who go there to harvest the reef’s limu (edible seaweed).