After 14 months of closure due to the massive flooding on Kauai’s north shore in April 2018, Kuhio high on Kauai’s north shore from Hanalei to Haena has reopened. This 2 mile stretch of scenic coastline is home to some of the most beautiful beaches and state park in the entire Hawaiian Islands.
Although not completed, the roadwork will continue, fixing the bridges and roads that were damaged during the flood. Due to the incredible rise of tourism within the islands in the last few years, The newly implemented Haena State Park Master Plan limits the number of visitors to 900 a day. Advance reservations are now required for all vehicles, walkers, bikers and shuttle riders entering Haena State Park and day hikers accessing the Kalalau Trail. Reservations can be made here, up to 14 days in advance. There is no parking allowed on the highway and a strict $200 parking violation ticket for those not adhering to these new rules. This is in effort to minimize the visitor impact on this fragile ecosystem. Within the last year of no outside visitors the reefs have come back to life, marine life has rebounded and the way of life in Haena has slowed down to its former years with wildlife running loose and kids playing in the streets. The new system being implemented is an effort to find a balance between Hawaii’s #1 source of income (tourism) and protecting such a sacred place within the Hawaiian islands.
shuttle, created by the Hanalei initiative, called the “North
shore shuttle” is now in place. Offering scheduled shuttle service
to Haena daily, this is a fantastic alternative for visitors to enjoy Haena
state park and minimize their impact. The new Kauai North Shore Shuttle runs
from Princeville Makai Golf parking
curb or Waioli parking area, just past Hanalei to Haena State
Park. Online reservations are required.
We encourage visitors to utilize this new system in respect to this fragile community and ecosystem that was affected and damaged by the floods. This is a rural community that has suffered tremendously and it will take traveling lightly, slowly and respectfully to help them transition back to the large number of visitors that are now accessing the area,” says Sue Kanoho, executive director of the Kauai Visitors Bureau.
She recommends visitors read and sign an “aloha pledge,” which you can find here. It offers advice and reminders on how best to explore the area.