Alakai Swamp Trail

Image Credit Hawaii Savvy|
Like Dislike Save
Address 3600 Kokee Rd, Waimea, HI 96796
Difficult out and back hiking trail at Kokee State Park.

• General: Cost: Free • General: Photo Opportunity • General: State Park • Hiking: Hiking • Hiking: Length: 5-8 Miles
• Hiking: Level: Difficult • Hiking: Minor Elevation Changes • Hiking: Out & Back Trail • Sightseeing: Great Views

The Alakai Swamp Trail is a difficult out and back style trail located at Kokee State Park. At the end of the trail is Kilohana Lookout which offers spectacular views of Wainiha and Hanalei Valleys on a clear day.

The full trail is around 3.5 miles (one way) but the full story is a bit more complex. To reach the Alakai Swamp Trail you'll first need to start at the Pihea Trail. Hike the Pihea Trail for just under 2 miles and it will connect to the Alakai Swamp Trail, at which point you'll turn left and hike for about 2.1 miles.

Since you joined the swamp trail about halfway through you'll only hike the northern half of it if you're heading to the lookout. You're total hike will be around 4 miles each way, close to 8 miles round trip.

Total elevation gain is only around 329 feet which puts you just over 4,000 feet above sea level when you reach the final lookout. Things will get, well, swampy and foggy on most days. Mud can also be an issue though there are planks in places so you're not walking through the swamp itself.

The map above shows the general path you'll take. Starting at the parking lot at the end of Kokee Road (550) you'll hike the green portion which is the Pihea Trail and then the blue which is the Alakai Swamp Trail which will take you to the Kilohana Lookout at the end.

As always, be sure to read up on Hiking Safety & Essentials before you head out and plan for cooler and wetter weather. Note that dogs are not allowed on this trail.