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Located on Kauai’s south shore, Brennecke’s Beach is one of the island’s smaller beaches tucked away at the eastern end of Poipu Beach Park. It’s like the little sister of this world-famous beach next door, whose small stretch of sand can easily be seen from the main roadway.
Brennecke Beach has something for everyone.
Despite its petite size, Brennecke’s still manages to attract large crowds everyday. It’s a popular spot for bodyboarding and bodysurfing, with waves so gentle that any beginner can learn here. Visitors can rent bodyboards from the Nukumoi surf shop across the street. Just be careful during the summer months when surf on the south shore may reach advisory levels. Also note that there are no lifeguards on duty at Brennecke’s, so use extra caution in and around the water.
In addition to seeing bodyboarders and bodysurfers, you’ll notice fishermen posted up along the rocky wall. You might even get lucky and see Hawaiian green sea turtles, which frequent the area. Unfortunately, snorkeling and swimming here are not recommended because of the oftentimes rough conditions.
Interestingly enough, the Brennecke’s we see today was not always this way. It used to have a 10-foot break wall between what is now the water’s edge and the start of the sandy beach. Bodyboarders and bodysurfers would catch waves right in front of the wall. However, after Hurricane Iwa and Iniki hit several decades ago, the surf break was depleted of its sand supply. So instead of breaking on a nice, even sandbar, the waves crashed on barren rocks. What was once the most popular bodyboarding waves on the south side became a thing of the past. That’s when the city stepped in, bringing dump truck loads of sand; but within a month, the sand would soon disappear. Eventually, the problem was fixed once the break wall was taken down. The sand stuck around and the beach began to return to its earlier form.
BRENNECKE’S BEACH • 2100 Hoone Rd., Poipu, Kauai 96756 • Amenities: showers, restrooms • Activities: bodyboarding, bodysurfing, fishing and lounging on sand; no surfboards • Free parking on street