Ka’ena Point Trail is where the north side swells meets the leeward west side in one of Oahu’s most beautiful and picturesque coastlines. With its jaw-dropping cliffs, plentiful wildlife, easy flat grade, and low crowds Ka’ena Point Trail is my favorite on Oahu. Reachable from either the north or west side the point is a similar 5-mile hike out and back from either direction.
We already shared a review of the easternmost hike on Oahu Makapu‘u Point Lighthouse Trail, this trail heads out to Oahu westernmost part. You can reach the point from two starting points (Wai‘anae or Mokule‘ia) this review starts from the Wai‘anae side. For a long day tack it to the end of a Drive Around Oahu.
Kaena Point (Ka’ena) trail is actually an old dirt road and as such the hiking is more of a walk then a heart-pumping trail. The flat grade of the hike makes it a great option for families and less active. Even though the hike is flat the length of the hike and tide pooling opportunities make swapping out your sandals for shoes a good idea. The hike is in full sun so arriving early, wear a hat, use reef safe sunscreen, bringing lots of water and we even brought an umbrella for shade.
One of the main reasons I recommend hiking from the
This hike is in a Natural Area Reserve, so be sure to take care to avoid damaging native flora as nesting seabirds like albatross frequent the area. If you’re lucky you’ll see monk seals sunbathing on the shore, turtles, and whales (November – May).
Go get to Kaena Point Trail from Waikiki take H1 west it will eventually turn into
- Website: Hawaii State Parks Kaena Point Trail
- Parking: Free (don’t leave valuables )
- Duration: 2 – 3hrs
- Length: 5 miles out and back.
- Elevation Gain: Small hills, mostly flat.
- Activity Level: easy-moderate (potentially moderate due to length and direct sun/heat )
- Terrain: Full Sun – Bring a hat and lots of water. Hiking on a dirt road
- Other: This area is a protected seabird (albatross) nesting area. No Dogs.
- Wear good walking shoes, bring lots of water, and wear a hat and sunscreen.
- Bring binoculars and if you want to spot whales.
- Go early to beat the heat.
- Bring an umbrella for shade.