Kauai Tree Tunnel

Kauai Tree Tunnel: Gateway to Paradise

Drive through the Kauai Tree Tunnel, a stunning canopy of eucalyptus trees that offers a grand entrance to the island’s south side.
  • Canopy of eucalyptus trees along Maluhia Road stretches for about a mile.
  • The wondrous drive lasts about two minutes.
  • Not only a scenic drive, but the shortest route from Lihue to the island’s south side.
  • Map: Google Maps

As you drive down the enchanting Maluhia Road on the island of Kauai, you’ll encounter a sight that feels like stepping into a dream: the Kauai Tree Tunnel. Stretching for about a mile, this natural marvel serves as a picturesque entrance to the south shore of the island, leading visitors to the charming towns of Koloa and Poipu.

Kauai Tree Tunnel

The Kauai Tree Tunnel is composed of a stunning array of eucalyptus trees that line both sides of the road. In 1911, Walter Duncan McBryde, a prominent figure in Kauai’s agricultural history, planted 500 eucalyptus trees as a gift to the island. These trees were intended to commemorate the inauguration of the island’s first sugar mill, a significant milestone in Kauai’s economic development. Over the decades, the trees have grown and intertwined, creating a natural archway that now serves as one of the island’s most iconic landmarks.

Old Koloa TownOld Koloa Town

The natural tunnel is more than just a picturesque drive; it is the gateway to some of Kauai’s most treasured destinations. As you emerge from the tunnel, you’ll find yourself on the threshold of Old Koloa Town, a town rich in history and culture. Koloa was the site of Hawaii’s first successful sugar plantation, and today, it boasts a blend of historic charm and modern amenities. Stroll through the streets of Old Koloa Town, where plantation-era buildings house delightful shops, galleries, and eateries.

Beyond Koloa, the road leads to the sun-drenched shores of Poipu, one of Kauai’s premier beach destinations. Poipu Beach Park is ideal for swimming, snorkeling, and spotting the Hawaiian monk seals that often bask on its sandy shores. For those seeking adventure, nearby attractions include the spectacular Spouting Horn blowhole and the rugged beauty of the Mahaulepu Trail.

Kauai Tree Tunnel

For photographers and nature enthusiasts, the Kauai Tree Tunnel offers a mesmerizing play of light and shadow, especially during the golden hours of dawn and dusk. The dappled sunlight filtering through the leaves creates a magical ambiance, perfect for capturing the serene beauty of Kauai. Though we do not recommend stopping along the roadway to take photos, there is a pullout for parking near the entrance at Kaumualii Highway. Watch out for traffic, as the popular roadway is not only a scenic drive, but the quickest route to Koloa and Poipu from Kauai’s main town of Lihue.

The Kauai Tree Tunnel has faced its share of challenges. Over the years, hurricanes and storms (especially Hurricane in Iniki in 1992) have caused significant damage to the trees. Despite these trials, the resilient tunnel has always bounced back.

The Kauai Tree Tunnel is more than just a road lined with trees; it’s a symbol of the island’s enduring connection to nature and its historical roots. Whether you’re visiting Kauai for the first time or returning to relive fond memories, a drive through the tree tunnel is an experience that captures the essence of this enchanting island. As you journey beneath the arching branches, take a moment to appreciate the natural beauty and history that make the Kauai Tree Tunnel a true gem of the Garden Isle.

Kauai Tree Tunnel