Sandy beach
Hike-in Required
Snorkeling / SCUBA
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Glass Beach is an interesting section of coast far from Kauai's normal tourist areas.

Lying further west of the south shore's resort area, Glass Beach gets its name from all of the glass from a former dump that washes ashore at the beach. Differrent conditions, times, and tides alter the glass, which could be large smooth pieces or small sand-like glass. But during a sunny day, the shore glows the colors of this glass. Due to all the glass and the water's brownish coloring owing to its location near the outflow of a couple creeks, Glass Beach isn't really a place to hang out for an afternoon or go for a swim at. Instead, you can park your car on the dirt road and walk along the shore and see a unique and colorfully-toned landscape made up of the old glass shards.

The area surrounding the beach is very industrial, so this one's better for a stop to explore, and then continuing on.

If you continue on the dirt road past the beach, it climbs a small hill to the site of the old McBryde Sugar Plantation Cemetery, which sits overlooking the water. One interesting area that few people make it to is down a quick scramble from the cemetery area to the lava shelf shore with rock pools and natural arches, wet and dry blowholes, and the strewn about waste of old rusting industrial equipment from the dump. Even the dirt itself holds the remains of the former dump, so be careful about what you're grabbing hold of when you're walkiing to or from the rock shelf area. If you don't want to follow the slick path down, most of this is also visible from the ridge above.

There are no lifeguards or amenities of any kind at Glass Beach. 

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass


Open Year-round



Interesting beach combing.


Industrial surroundings.

Pets allowed

Not Allowed


Family friendly



Have updates, photos, alerts, or just want to leave a comment?
Sign In and share them.