You got your own style, now let it come through. And remember no matter what, you got to be you.
~ Sebastian from the Little Mermaid
Anini Beach is, in my biased opinion, the best beach on Kauai (at least on the north shore) for little swimmers (and big swimmers too). It is just north of Kilaeau town, a lovely crescent-shaped stretch of beach with a sandy gentle slope into the ocean. We made several trips during our vacation on Kauai. Anini is one of the few beaches visitors (and locals) can enjoy all year long.
A local tipped us off that if you keep driving north, past the main beach, there is a lovely beach (part of Anini) that is perfect for keiki (Hawaiian for “the little one”). And indeed it was! Our little mermaid was in heaven: the waves were gentle, and the sand was soft. She had a blast in the water (her first ocean visit) splashing, jumping, and frolicking to her heart’s content.
Back on the sand, we built sandcastles (and the sand there is perfect for this, not too rocky, not too soft), chased chickens (naturally!), and watched the SUPs (Stand-up Paddle), surfers (on the southern-most edge of the beach), and snorkelers. On the main beach there are picnic tables, bathroom and outdoor shower facilities, and a boat launch (and ample parking). Apparently, it’s also possible to camp at Anini Beach. We saw a few tents when we were there. Something for just about everyone.
Big Papa and I traded off keeping an eye on our own keiki so we could each try a bit of snorkeling and, despite the somewhat murky waters, we saw a lot of fish…and honu (turtles)! I’ve heard people say that the coral on the extensive reef at Anini has not fared well in recent years, but we still found plenty of sea life, including the ever-colorful (and mouthful to say) Humahumanukanukaapua’a or Triggerfish, super skinny trumpetfish, and a really cool-looking snowflake moray eel.
Each time we had to pack up and head home, I felt a little sad. Thank goodness–memories of a good time spent at Anini aside–each time we left, we took a bit of the beach with us.
Take the road less traveled, Beth