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Off-the-Beaten-Path Adventure: Kayak Wailua River to Secret Falls

Kauai has no shortage of fun and amazing adventures throughout the island, but there is one off-the-beaten-path adventure that is a must! Kayaking the Wailua River to Secret Falls definitely should be added to your itinerary when visiting Kauai. Interestingly enough, Secret Falls’ real name is Uluwehi Falls but since they got the name “Secret Falls” they are actually no longer a secret since it doesn’t take much difficulty to access them.

We are going to outline all the things you should know about this kayak trip to Secret Falls so you can successfully plan your trip ahead of time!

Kayaking on Wailua River, Kauai, Hawaii, USA.

First things first, in order to get to Secret Falls you will need to navigate the Wailua River. Although there are a few ways to travel on the river, a kayak is your best option and will take approximately 45 minutes each way. After that 45 minutes, you will arrive at the beach where you leave the kayak and continue on foot to hike for about 30 minutes until you reach the falls.

Unless you are bringing your own kayak, you will need to rent one nearby. Luckily, there are a few options to do so. Wailua Kayak & Canoe is a great option for renting your kayaks since they are located on the Wailua River and don’t require hauling the equipment. You can call and book with them directly for your next visit!

Other kayak rental options on Kauai may require hauling the equipment on top of your car and driving to the river. There are also some kayak rental shops that are not open on the weekends so make sure you take all of these factors into consideration.

Stunning view of Wailua Waterfall near the island capital Lihue

When it comes to kayaking the Wailua River, you can either book a guided tour of the Secret Falls or choose to take the trip on your own. If you book a guided tour, make sure to book in advance so you can get an early start time and your preferred day. This adventure is best to start as early as you can since it is a popular Kauai activity and can tend to get crowded.

If you choose to take the kayak trip on your own, then there is a map of the river that is very straightforward and easy to follow. Once you get to the hiking portion of the experience, there is only one trail to follow so that is pretty straightforward as well. You will also most likely see other people heading in the same direction too because everyone will be going to the same place!

Now when it comes to the hiking point of this excursion, there are a few tips and tricks to be aware of. Some portions of the trail will include slippery rocks, muddy terrain, tall grasses, and traveling through knee to waist deep water depending on your height. Your shoes will get wet throughout the entirety of the trail so no need to try and dry them off. Once you arrive at the falls, it is advised to not swim directly under the waterfall as there could be falling rocks. The rocks surrounding are also slippery as well.

Hiking Trail in Kauai with trees and greenery

For this unique and fun experience, you will experience a few hours of activity so prepare for that as well. It is also advised to not bring children under the age of 6, and children under the age of 16 should be supervised by an adult.

We hope all of these tips and tricks are helpful when planning your off-the-beaten-path kayak adventure to Secret Falls! Be sure to book your stay now at Hanalei Bay Resort and create the memories of a lifetime!

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