We regret to inform you that Hanamaulu Beach should be avoided for tourists due to crime and neglect. It is the only beach on Kauai where we give such a recommendation. Instead, we recommend nearby Kalapaki Beach.
Very near the Lihue Airport, forgotten Hanamaulu Beach Park sits unnoticed below the hustle and bustle of the airport and freeway above. The beach is located down the street from the working class Hanamaulu neighborhood of Lihue.
Regrettably, the beach has become a haven for homeless individuals and substance abusers, making the beach an unsuitable destination for both tourists and many local residents. A visit to Hanamaulu Beach reveals individuals living in their vehicles and in encampments above the beach.
Fishing by local residents is one of the few redeeming activities at Hanamaulu. Overall, the vibe at the beach is not good. The conditions are unfortunate, as the shaded beach, framed by two rocky points, is rather picturesque.
If you do decide to visit, stay vigilant and near your vehicle. Locking and leaving your vehicle for the beach may not deter a smash and grab.
Do not visit the beach alone and skip the restrooms if you can. Also, chances are most picnic tables aren’t usable.
As if that’s not enough, the water in the bay is not the most pristine on the island. Situated downstream from Lihue, the Hanamaulu Stream deposits contaminates into the bay from the town above.
Location at Google Maps
The approach to Hanamaulu Beach on Hehi Road. The bridge is part of Kauai’s main ring highway (in this section named Kapule Highway – Route 51).
An old bridge can also be found near Hanamaulu Beach Park. The beach and bay are protected from the open ocean by two rocky points. The Ahukini Recreational Pier can be seen on the right point.
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