Do I need a Permit?

One of the most common questions about the trail is “Do I need a permit?”. It all depends on what you want to do. It can be a little more confusing since the new reservation system started. Here’s a quick guide to make it easier to understand:

Do I need a permit if I want to…….

  • Visit Ke’e Beach?
  • Hike 2-miles along the Kalalau Trail to Hanakāpīʻai Beach and back? (4-miles round trip)
  • Hike to Hanakāpīʻai Beach and then 2-miles up to Hanakāpīʻai Falls and back? (8-miles round trip)

For any of the questions above, the answer is no, you don’t need a permit, but you do need to make a reservation. Reservations are made at You can make them up to 30 days in advance but must make it at least 1 day before you visit. I would recommend buying them as soon as they are available because they tend to sell out quick.

If the site won’t let you select a voucher for the day and time specified, they are sold out for that time. Choose another day. Reservations are $5 per car or $1 per person if you show up via shuttle, bike, taxi, uber, etc.

How do I get to the Kalalau Trail?

Do I need a permit if I want to…….

  • Camp overnight at Hanakoa or Kalalau?
  • Hike to Hanakoa or Kalalau and back in one day?
  • Trail run the whole Kalalau Trail?
  • Hike the Kalalau Trail past Hanakāpīʻai Beach even if I don’t plan to camp?
  • Kayak into Kalalau (During the summer months)?

For any of the questions in this section, the answer is yes, you do need a Napali Coast State Wilderness Park – Kalalau Permit. Permits are obtained at Permits used to be available 1-year in advance but currently they are issuing permits 90-days out.

How do I get to the Kalalau Trail?

Do I need a permit if I……

  • want to be dropped off by boat along the trail or at Kalalau? Answer: Commercial Boat drop-offs are illegal. This option is not allowed.
  • am a local? Answer: Locals can visit Hā’ena State Park for free without a reservation. Locals need a permit (discounted) to hike the Kalalau Trail past Hanakāpīʻai Beach.

Visit for more information about the permit process. How do I get to the Kalalau Trail?

Kalalau Trail Map
Kalalau Trail Map

Related Articles


    1. Permits are only available in advance online. There are no permits saved for last minute pickup. Once they are sold out, they are sold out.

        1. You can’t register for a permit on this site. You must apply for a permit with the State of Hawaii. Instructions are listed on

  1. If a group gets a 4 night permit and only stays 2 nights, does the other two nights go to waste? Can you take someone elses unused permit? When sold out online does new permits ever appear?

    1. If someone returns their permits, they will re-appear online. There is no notification system used. They just re-appear and they are open for the first person who sees them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to top button