Kauai travel bookings? Check.
A list of must-see places on the island? Check.
List of places to avoid during your Kauai visit? Wait…What?
Planning a vacation can be fun. There is an element of curiosity and excitement involved when it comes to choosing interesting locations to explore during your trip.
Kauai has a plethora of mesmerising locations and the island leaves no stone unturned when it comes to pleasing its guests.
Although beautiful in every way, some of these locations have witnessed tragic accidents and are not safe enough for visitors. It is best to keep such places in mind while scouting for worthwhile places on the island to explore.
For your safety and well-being, here’s a list of places to avoid on your next Kauai visit.
4 Places to Avoid in Kauai
Beaches Without Lifeguards
In the recent years, an increasing number of tourists have been deviating towards the secluded, non-touristy beaches of Kauai. On the one hand, these beaches are downright amazing. On the other, they are dangerous as some unlucky tourists have met with tragic accidents.
“RIP CURRENTS. You could be swept out and drown. If in doubt, don’t go out.”
When you see such signs on a beach, you can guess that danger is always looming. One careless mistake can cost your life.
Beaches like Lumahai and Hanakapiai have powerful rip currents and undertows that can sweep people out to sea.
Since these beaches are remote and have no lifeguards stationed, the chances of rescue are little to none. This is a serious fact as the bodies of 12 drowned victims in the past are yet to be recovered.
Another such location is Queen’s bath, touted as the ‘Pool of Death’. This beautiful emerald water pool can quickly turn ugly when the ocean conditions are not good.
Although Queens bath is bordered by lava rocks, rogue waves can easily pull people out of the pool and drag them into the ocean. The slippery rock walls pose an additional risk considering the many drownings and serious accidents that have happened here.
For a safe experience, prefer beaches with lifeguards and always have a buddy when you step inside the water. Make sure you have observed the ocean for at least 20 minutes and made your decision based off of that.
Dangerous Hiking Trails
Next to drowning, which remains the major reason for tourist deaths on the island, hiking is another looming danger for both tourists and locals in Kauai.
The island’s lava rock terrain and wet weather can make hiking difficult and risky if you are not careful.
Some hikers get lost by heading on unauthorized routes, while a few others slip to death on wet and slippery terrain, especially on ridgeline trails.
Speaking of dangerous ridgeline trails, one trial that comes to mind is the Kalalau trail. When you google “dangerous hikes in Kauai”, Kalalau Trail is the first result that shows up.
Considered one of the most difficult hiking trails in the world, the 11-mile long treacherous trail teases hikers with narrow, slippery ridges and steep drop-offs. A particular section called the “Crawler’s Ledge” is considered the scariest part of the trail and is not for the faint of heart.
Kipu Falls has graced popular Hollywood movies like the Jurassic Park and Raiders of the Lost Ark. But the place has been closed for over a decade now following several tragic deaths that took place in the area.
Fox News called Kipu Falls “Hawaii’s Killer Waterfall” following the deaths of people who plunged into the pool 20-ft below. It was reported that these people were pulled to their deaths when they tried to swim to the shore.
Kipu Falls is located on a private property. The place is now fenced-off and access to the public is closed. You can be booked with charges if you’re found trespassing in the area.
Publicising Kipu Falls as a tourist location has been officially declared an offence. Don’t get lured by old guidebooks and magazines that publicize it as an exotic swimming location. Any location, if dangerous, it is not worth risking your life.
The idea of plunging into a freshwater pool can be immensely tempting. Although, it may not be a good idea considering the rumours about leptospirosis infected pools on the island.
Leptospirosis is a bacterial infection that can spread through cuts and mucus membranes when people go swimming in freshwater ponds or streams.
How can you identify if the pool is infected with lepto or not? It is likely that you’ll come across signboards warning people not to go swimming in such areas. If not, it is best to take advise from the locals nearby.
According to the Department of Health, State of Hawaii, 100-200 cases of leptospirosis are identified annually in the United States and approximately 50% of these cases occur in Hawaii.
So, please practise prevention when you come across stagnant water pools in Kauai, especially when you have cuts or sores.
To summarize, please think twice before you plan on visiting secluded beaches, hiking treacherous trails and swimming in risky waterfalls and infected pools. Why take the risk when you have plenty of other adventurous and fun things to do on the island?
Whether you are planning your next Kauai vacation or have already landed on the island, our blog can be your virtual guide for a memorable trip.
We wish you a safe and enjoyable experience in Kauai.