Kayak the Wailua and Hike to Secret (Uluwehi) Falls

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Kayak on the scenic Wailua River, then hike to a picture perfect 150ft waterfall in Kauai for a refreshing swim. It's pretty much the perfect Kauai day!

First, you need kayaks to get on the river. I bring my Oru Kayak with me everywhere, but we did have to rent one additional, and there are rentals everywhere - a quick Google search will get you tons of options. You can launch your boat from directly across the Wailua River Marina where you see the small cement ramp, plenty of parking and bathrooms (if you are renting a kayak, they will point you in the right direction as well).

It's two miles each way for the kayaking part of the trip. Going there, be sure to stay on the right, or north, side of the river (left is for larger boats if they come through), and paddle until you come to a fork in the river where you will turn right. If you go left, the river will end shortly so pretty hard to get lost here. From the fork in the river, it's only about 5-10 minutes more of paddling until you reach the area where you dock your kayak. It you are going during the middle of the day, there will be plenty of other kayaks there, but if you are early or late, just look for the clearing on the right where it looks very easy to pull in (this is a very obvious turn out).

The hike begins right from the bank, and is very well marked. It's 1.5 miles round trip, and very easy with no elevation gain. The waterfall is gorgeous, but don't be fooled by the "Secret" name. This is a very popular spot, so be sure to go earlier or later in the day if you want the spot to yourself. Once you are back on the kayak, just backtrack, staying on the left side of the river this time, to the car and you are done! This is a pretty easy day, and a perfect mix a few different quintessential Hawaii adventures!

Pack List

  • Water shoes (Keens or similar)
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Camera
  • Sunscreen
  • Bathing suit
  • Towel
  • Kayak
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Activities:

Photography, Kayaking, Swimming, Hiking

Skill Level:

Beginner

Season:

Year Round

Trail Type:

Out-and-Back

Distance:

1.5 Miles

Features:

Bathrooms
Easy Parking
Family Friendly
Food Nearby
River
Waterfall
Swimming Hole

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Added by Christin Healey

Explorer, adventure seeker, lover of life and all things creative.

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