The monk seal napping on the rocks in the foreground of the first picture of Shipwrecks Beach is RK30. She's identifiable due to her many large scars, including a neck entanglement scar, numerous cookie cutter shark pit scars, one large shark scar on her flank and propeller scars on her belly. RK30 delivered the island's third pup of the season this year, which was tagged as RF30. Kauai is home to only about 40 monk seals.
The unmistakable profile of Bali Hai, or Makana Mountain on Kauai's north shore is where the last sunset in the United States takes place each evening. The name Bali Hai comes from the movie South Pacific in which the pyramid-shaped Makana represented a mystical distant island by that name.
The wetland taro fields that stretch out green and glimmering as you cross the one-lane metal bridge into Hanalei is Haraguchi Farm, the largest taro farm in the state. Taro grows in flooded fields called lo'i, and the taro shoots are planted, tended and harvested by hand while wading in water and mud. It's backbreaking labor.
Beside the Spouting Horn, you can see a large rectangular opening in the lava shelf, and the sea churning below. This used to be the Kukuiula Seaplume, which was known to throw a spray of water 200 feet into the air at times, however, in the 1920s a sugarcane company manager had the blowhole destroyed with blasting powder because salt spray from the plume was damaging the crops on a few acres of his land.
Manawaiopuna Falls is more famously known as the Jurassic Falls because it was featured in the movie Jurassic Park.
Tunnels Beach (Makua) is unique for having an inner and an outer reef. About an eighth of a mile offshore is a half-moon shaped reef. This is the inner reef and it is shallow. This area is ideal for novice snorkelers, while advanced divers and snorkelers explore the outer reef, which has more lava tubes, arches and coral formations.