Beach Trail From Whalers Cove

Koloa Landing Snorkeling Underwater Exploration

003-115Koloa Landing is one of the best spots on Kauai for beginning shore dives. Because there are no facilities here, there are rarely more than a few people in the water. Most of the local dive companies use this as their “shore” dive location due to the ease of entrance, deep water, and abundance of marine life, but anyone can access the beach.

Entering the water is as easy as walking down the old cement launch. Divers will find that the water gets deep almost immediately. Mariners originally discovered this deep-water port during the days of the fur and sandalwood trades. Divers will find it full of marine life. The schools of fish are much larger here than they are at other nearby locations like Poipu Beach. Visibility is usually good and divers can encounter many different species here that are seen less frequently elsewhere on Kauai including: mullet, trumpet-fish, and file-fish. Even the invertebrate populations are a little more unique here. The rocks are often covered with red pencil urchins and it is common to spot octopus.

Koloa Landing can also be a great snorkeling spot as long as a few precautions are followed. Snorkelers (and divers) should remember that ocean conditions vary and there is no lifeguard on duty here. The water is typically calm, but it can get a little rough near the rocks and it is wise to stay out of surge areas if there is any swell showing. Visitors should check in with the lifeguards at Poipu Beach Park to find out about ocean conditions along the South Shore before venturing out. Of course snorkelers should always swim with a buddy and follow ocean safety guidelines. You can also check out our tips for snorkeling at

Due to the deep water, lack of facilities, and the absence of a lifeguard, this location is not recommended for families with children. Only more advanced snorkelers should venture out here, or consider signing up for a guided shore dive.Sea Turtle

Finding Koloa Landing is a little tricky and so is finding a parking spot. From the round-a-bout in Poipu, take the exit marked for Spouting Horn and then make an immediate left Ho’onani Rd. On the right you will see a dirt parking area followed by a bumpy gravel road that goes down to the beach. If there is parking up top, take it, there is rarely parking available below.

To learn more about Coral Reefs, or the fish that you will see while snorkeling on Kauai, check out Monika Mira’s many books about marine life. All are available on

1 reply
  1. Adam Kurczych
    Adam Kurczych says:

    Ive dived Koloa Landing many times. There is always something new to see. Even better when diving with a rebreather. Kauai Rebreather and Technical showed me how to dive with a rebreather and how to get up close to the marine life, including monk seals, turtles, octopus, frog fish and all sorts of tropical fish. Swim right in the middle of schools of raccoon angelfish,

Comments are closed.