SHIPWRECK BEACH ON KAUAI – CLIFF JUMP, COASTAL WALK, WHALES, TURTLES
Shipwrecks beach is my favorite beach on Kauai. It has so much to offer but it is hidden from the unsuspecting eye. What exactly do I mean by this? If you roll up to Shipwrecks it looks like a nice beach but not much else. However, there is so much going on here if you know where to look. There is the Maha’ulepu Coastal Trail beginning on the left of the beach, the cliff-jump out at the point, turtles and whales out in the ocean and a surf break when the swell is up!
Shipwrecks is in Poipu and not too far from popular tourist town Kapa’a. It’s a great spot for a chill session if you don’t want to head all the way north or west!
Shipwrecks Beach Cliff Jump
I slept in the parking lot in my car a few times while I was on the island and would wake up for sunrise at the beach. Special moments like that are what travel is all about. The cliff jump is right at the end of the cliff on the left side of the beach as you look out towards the ocean. It’s pretty hard to miss.
You walk up the cliff from behind and then edge your way down to the jumping spot right on the tip of the coastline. I think the jump is about 40ft or 13m but it could be a little less according to some. The depth of the water could have been deeper but we never touched the bottom. As always you will need to check this yourself to watch out for changes in tides, sandbars, rocks, and debris.
We sent a few backflips from this height and never touched the bottom. Any time we were in the area during our month of hiking in Kauai, we would pull in and have a few jumps at Shipwrecks. It’s definitely the most popular cliff jump spot on Kauai and the only ‘real’ well-known spot for jumping from a decent height into the ocean.
Maha’ulepu Heritage Coastal Trail
The Maha’ulepu is one of the easiest hikes on Kauai and is actually more of a coastal walk. The walk begins at Shipwrecks beach and winds along the coast. It’s a little under 2 miles each way but you can really turn back at any point unless you are trying to reach the caves. The Makauwahi caves are at the end of the trail and it’s truly a sight to behold. In this cave is lush green grass and plants but also fossils, which are millions of years old.
Whale watching at Shipwrecks
From the beach its not uncommon to see whales breaching out in the ocean. I visited during January and there is a day where multiple whales cruised past the coast, exciting everybody on shore. Nic flew the drone out to get a closer look at the whales and captured some epic footage.
The free hot tub hack: Grand Hyatt
If you are like me, you are likely not keen to spend hundreds a night in a fancy hotel. Luckily though security is lax and you aren’t harming anyone by sneaking in for a cheeky hot tub session. After a few cliff jumps, we blended right in at the Grand Hyatt, which is right on the beach at Shipwrecks. A 30-minute hot tub session was enjoyed and then we were on our way! Definitely, give it a crack!