Guide to Larsen’s Beach Kauai
Want to find a beach on the northeastern part of Kauai that you have a good chance of having to yourself? Or at a minimum avoiding the crowds. Larsens Beach Kauai has you covered! Intense waves often limit opportunities to swim and snorkel, but there are still a ton of other things to enjoy about this beach.
You are likely to have a ton of space to yourself on Larsens Beach because accessing it is a litle bit more difficult than most. It requires a brief drive down a bumpy dirt road and then a ½ mile hike down to the shore.
Don’t let the negatives deter you as the beach itself still is really special!
- Guide to Larsen’s Beach Kauai
- Larsen's Beach Quick Facts:
- Actually Getting There – Little Bit More Difficult Than Expected
- What to Expect on Larsen's Beach
- Summary – Pro's and Con's
Larsen’s Beach Quick Facts:
- Other Names: Ka’aka’aniu Beach
- Known For: seclusion and strong currents
- Facilities: None
- Lifeguards: No
- Parking: Dirt lot with plenty of spaces
- Other: Likely VERY FEW people will be there
Larsens Beach is located on the northeast coast of the island of Kauai.
It isn’t close to any of the big resort areas, which helps keep crowds away.
You get there by driving through a small local neighborhood.
The beach is named after a farmer who previously lived in the area and figured out how to increase sugar crop yields. Considering how beautiful this beach is, I consider that an honor!
Actually Getting There – Little Bit More Difficult Than Expected
It is actually a little bit harder to find this beach than expected. If you put Larsen’s Beach into your GPS you will be led to a private residence that backs up to the beach, and not the public access parking lot and trail.
To get to the actual beach access put Larsen’s Beach Road into your GPS instead.
Dirt Road Access
Larsen’s Beach Road is actually a dirt road that you have to drive down. Some rental cars can’t be driven on dirt roads, but this one wasn’t rocky. The .9 mile down was easy.
Parking at Larsen’s Beach
The dirt road leads into a dirt parking lot. Even if the small lot fills up, you could park along the side of the road just outside of the lot.
From the parking lot you will see a trail leading straight into the forest. You follow this trail for ½ mile down to the beach. Unlike a lot of other Hawaiian trails this one is easy to follow.
You should have no problem completing it in flip flops. Soon after starting on the trail you will have sweeping views of the beach in front of you. You likely will see it devoid of crowds.
What to Expect on Larsen’s Beach
The beach is pretty big. Even if there are other people there you should be able to find a wide stretch of sand to yourself. Like lots of eastside Kauai beaches the waves and currents can be intense. Before you venture too far into the water make sure it is safe.
When I was on the beach on a Saturday afternoon I literally only saw one other guy on a walk along the beach.
If conditions are right you can snorkel, but I wouldn’t plan on being able to most days.
Summary – Pro’s and Con’s
- Quick and fun hike
- Wide sand and blue water
- Framed by trees providing shade
- Strong currents make swimming difficult
- Dirt Road and hike required
- No lifeguards, showers, or restrooms
- Super currents, difficulty in getting to, no restrooms showers
WHAT TO PACK FOR KAUAI
- Dresses – Packing a few good dresses is essential for Hawaii. Dresses have become my go to on trips to help quickly put an outfit together. Revolve is one of my go to shops for beach dresses. ASOS also has great summer dresses.
- Shorts – Anyone who is traveling to Hawaii needs a good pair of shorts. Khakis are great for guys. For women, cute athletic shorts or denim shorts are perfect for a breezy summertime look. These Levi denim shorts are my current favorites! These high waisted athletic shorts have gone viral on instagram and for good reason, they are AMAZING.
- Sandals – LOVE these Teva’s! They are my new go to travel sandal. Shop my favorite Teva’s here. They are great to wear in the water snorkeling and also amazing for hiking in Hawaii.
- Sports bra – This SKIMS bra is the most comfortable sports bra you will ever wear! Trust me. I travel with 5 of them. Also, highly recommend checking out the SKIMS fits everybody bra is to die for as well.
- Tank tops – Free people is my go to place to buy cute and affordable tank tops. I have this tighten up tank in almost every color.
- Hat – essential. Shop the newest hats at Nordstrom.
- Beach cover-up – Having at least one good cover-up is essential on any beach trip. I recommend ASOS, Nordstrom and Revolve as well.
- Hiking boots – I have two pairs of hiking boots that I love. My Columbia waterproof boots and my Salomon hiking boots. Highly recommend checking them both out! Warning – they both sell out really quick.
- Tennis Shoes – I guess you could wear sandals hiking this trail but I would recommend tennis shoes. It can get narrow and slippery in parts. These Nike high tops are my current favs. They look so cute with shorts too!
- Packing cubes – I always go to Urban Outfitters for my packing cubes. They have the cutest ones!
- Quick Dry Travel Towel – This quick dry towel is amazing to travel with. It really will come in handy when you need extra room in your suitcase.
- Snorkeling gear – for obvious reasons.
Planning a trip to Kauai? Read everything we know about Kauai here:
My husband and I have been to Kauai many, many times and have written up more guides to help you plan your trip. These are my most popular blog posts and Kauai travel guides to help you plan your trip.
Best Beaches for Snorkeling on Kauai
- TUNNELS BEACH IN KAUAI (amazing snorkeling, swimming, seals) – one of my personal favorite beaches own the entire island!
- KE’E BEACH ON KAUAI – great snorkeling, swimming, but you have to make reservation in advance – it was a nightmare.
- Hideaway’s Beach – Amazing snorkeling on the North Shore.
- Anini Beach – (Snorkeling, fishing, swimming) Great for basically everything.
- Kalapaki Beach in Kauai – Kids beach. Perfect beach for families, beginner snorkeling and swimming!
Best Cliff Jumping in Kauai
- SHIPWRECK BEACH ON KAUAI – Amazing cliff jumping beach
- QUEEN’S BATH KAUAI: COMPLETE GUIDE – Another must visit!
More awesome beaches
- MOLOA’A BEACH ON KAUAI – Insanely underrated. Giligans Island was filmed here. This beach was another one of my favorites. Practically empty.
- Lumaha’i Beach Kauai – What you need to know before going
- Secret Beach Kauai! (aka Kauapea beach) – MUST see beach!
- Haena Beach – We saw a Monk Seal on this beach!
- Gillin’s Beach – Fairly secluded beach where you can ride horses!
- Donkey Beach – Underrated – practically deserted beach
- Hanalei Beach – Gorgeous beach, perfect for sunsets.
- Salt Pond Beach Park – Amazing beach for kids and families (You can camp here as well)
- Black Pot Beach
Kauai Hiking Guides
- WAILUA FALLS HIKE ON KAUAI – AMAZING WATERFALL HIKE! Probably my favorite hike I have ever done.
- KALEPA RIDGE TRAIL – BEST HIKE IN HAWAII…SERIOUSLY. Trust me, don’t leave this one off your list! It’s GORGEOUS!
- MAKALEHA TRAIL – Amazing trail that is extremely muddy. 100% worth it!
- CANYON TRAIL TO WAIPO’O FALLS
- Pihea Trail – Easy hike on Kauai with Na’pali Coast Views!
- Makauwahi Cave Trail – Kauai Hidden gem
Read about all the hikes we have done in Kauai here.
Read all other posts on Kauai here.