Hawaii Highways road photos -- Other Kauai

(Kauai part 2 of 2 -- other Kauai part: Kuhio Highway)

Below are more than a dozen road photos from western and southern Kauai. Except as noted, these were taken on my September 1999 and November 2001 visits to the island. A separate page covers the Kuhio Highway in northern Kauai.

NOTE: In case you want more detail, clicking some of the photos below (for now, mainly ones from my 2001 trip) will call up enlarged, higher-quality (less .jpg compression) versions. Those alternate versions have larger file sizes, so please be patient while they download.

North end of Na Poli cliffs
South end of Na Poli cliffs
Two views of the tall (up to 4000') sea cliffs on Kauai's western Na Pali coast, which along with the Kalalau Valley (next photo) and the adjacent Alakai Swamp are the main reasons why you can't circumnavigate Kauai by car. Above left is the north end of the Na Pali cliffs, from the half-mile marker on the trail south from the west end of the Kuhio Highway to the Kalalau Valley. Above right is the south end of the cliffs, from isolated, barren Polihale Beach in southwest Kauai, near the west end of Kaumualii Highway (state route 50). (Both photos September 1999)

See also the FAQs item on the history of the abortive attempt to connect what are now state routes 550 and 560, to provide a direct road link between northwestern and southwestern Kauai.

This unpaved road takes you from the west end of the Kaumualii Highway (state route 50) to Polihale Beach, shown above. (August 2003, photo courtesy of Barry Morris, D.C.)
Dirt road through fields to Polihale Beach
Staightaway on Kaumualii Highway (state route 50), near its west end

A straightaway on the Kaumualii Highway in southwest Kauai near mile 30, approaching the junction with Tartar Drive to the National Bureau of Standards' WWVH radio station for broadcasting time signals. (May 2003, photo courtesy of Craig Seufert)
Kalalau Valley view Distant view of Niihau Island
The 4000' deep Kalalau Valley creates a break in the Na Pali cliffs, as viewed from an overlook at the end of Kokee Road (continuation of state route 550, which technically ends a few miles to the south at the entrance to Kokee State Park). (September 1999) Off in the distance, from another nearby overlook, the "forbidden island" of Niihau, a privately-owned island that generally puts out the unwelcome mat for visitors. Niihau is basically one big ranch, worked by a mainly native Hawaiian population. The owners seek to preserve Niihau as a last outpost of native Hawaiian culture (native Hawaiians are a minority most everywhere else in Hawaii). (September 1999)
Waimea Canyon

Waimea Canyon, "the Grand Canyon of the Pacific," which runs along the east side of Kokee Road (in this area, state route 550). (September 1999)
Spouting Horn blowhole Koloa Tree Tunnel, on south Kauai's county route 520
One of the best of Hawaii's blowholes in action, Spouting Horn on Kauai's south shore off Lawai Road, which runs west from the south end of Poipu Road (part of county route 520). A few seconds after waves crash against the shore, some of the water squirts out of a hole the waves have eroded through the rock. (September 1999)
The return trip from Kauai's south shore usually takes you through the 0.7 mile long Koloa Tree Tunnel, here viewed from its north end near where Maluhia Road (part of county route 520) joins the Kaumualii Highway (state route 50). The canopy was still recovering from hurricane damage, and so a little more ragged on the top than it used to be. (November 2001)
County route 520, through Koloa town
South of the tree tunnel, through Koloa town, county route 520 briefly heads west under another tree canopy on Koloa Road, before turning back south on Poipu Road at the Chevron station shown in the background. Koloa Road continues west as county route 530 past the gas station. (May 2003, photo courtesy of Craig Seufert)

On the east side of Lihue, the roadway for Waapa Road (part of state route 51) continues with both a name and number change, to Nawiliwili Road (state route 58).  Kauai is the only Hawaii island where I've seen this kind of begin/end sign combination. The zero milepost for route 58 confirms the route number change. (November 2001)
'58 Begin' and '51 End' route markers, with zero milepost for route 58
North end of state route 51, at junction with Kuhio Highway (state route 56) Closeup of terminal milepost 3.49 at north end of state route 51
The north end of state route 51, where the Kapule Highway joins the Kuhio Highway (state route 56), is marked by an "end 51" sign (above left), followed by route 51's terminal milepost showing the exact total length of 3.49 miles (above right). (Both photos November 2001)
Opaeka'a Falls, northwest of Lihue Wailua Falls, northwest of Lihue
The highways leading into the hills northwest of Lihue take you to some spectacular waterfalls, such as 'Opaeka'a Falls north of Kuamoo Road (state route 580) from an overlook near mile 3 (above left), and Wailua Falls off the short loop at the end of Maalo Road (state route 583) (above right). (Both photos September 1999)

Go to the previous or next parts of the Hawaii Highways road photos collection:
Link to go back to Kuhio Highway (Kauai part 1)
to Kuhio Highway (Kauai part 1)
Link to continue to Hana Highway (Maui part 1)
to Hana Highway (Maui part 1)
or directly to other parts:

Overview · Introduction · Interstate H-3 · Interstate H-1 · Other Freeways
Other Oahu South · Other Oahu West · Other Oahu East · Piilani Highway
Kahekili Highway · Other Maui · Lanai/Molokai · Kalawao County
Saddle Road · Observatories Roads · Lava Closures · Red Road
Waipio Valley · Other Big Island

or to other sections of the Hawaii Highways site:

Link to Hawaii Highways main page Link to Hawaii Highways, Maui route list

Comments, etc.? Please e-mail me.

© 1999-2004 Oscar Voss.