The Na'Pali Coast State Park is on the north shore of the Hawaiian island of Kaua’i. It covers 25 km2 (~10 sq mi) of land and was designated in 1983, expanded in 2009, to preserve the native natural communities in the Hanalei and Waimea Districts. It stretches from sea level along the Na'Pali coast to the highest point at Pihea, 1,306 m (~4,285 ft).
The rugged, magnificent cliffs which have featured in films like Jurassic Park and King Kong were formed by the action of erosion on an island formed, like the rest of Hawaii, by volcanic activity. The island experiences up to 254 cm (100 in) of rain per year in some parts, and this, together with the fierce winter wave action, has created 27 km (17 mi) of spectacular green pinnacles which tower over the shoreline.
The Kalalau Trail is the only way to access the Na Pali Coast by land. This trail was originally built in the 1800s. Around 18 km (~11 mi) in length, it begins at Kee Beach and mounts steadily across sheer cliffs and down through three valleys, till it ends at the secluded Kalalau Beach. Here, the cliffs rise to a staggering 1,200 m (4,000 ft), towering over the Pacific Ocean below. The path is well established, but involves precarious narrow sections and can be muddy and slippery after rainfall.
Visitors not looking for such a long walk can appreciate the iconic mountainous shoreline via boat tours, guided kayak trips or, from above, via one hour air tours by helicopter.
Accessible only by sea is the Nu’alolo Valley, one of the westernmost points of the park, where you can see the large-scale stone-walled terraces, remnants of the home of early Hawaiians on the island, where they planted taro, fished and lived.