Lydgate Pond

Lydgate Pond – Where to Enjoy Swimming Year-Round in East Side Kauai
Local Expert's Rating:
4 / 5
The Bottom Line:

Well-known as one of the safest spots in East Side Kauai for swimming all throughout the year, Lydgate Pond never fails to bring in the crowds. With the boulders blocking the waves, even the youngest kids can splash around with ease. Want to take a break from swimming? Enjoy a picnic, go beachcombing, or build sandcastles instead.  

- The Local Expert Team

If you’d like to swim in the ocean without the waves coming in hard and fast, Lydgate Pond is definitely calling your name. With its two saltwater pools surrounded by boulders, this East Side Kauai beach serves as a great place for people of all ages to swim.

The smallest of the saltwater pools is just three feet deep in the middle, giving the little ones a place to splash around at their leisure. The bigger pool goes as deep as five feet, so there’s never any worry about drop-offs. Lifeguards stand by most of the day anyway, always looking for a chance to lend a hand and keep everyone safe.

Outside the huge boulders, the waves roll in at full force, often splashing against the rocks and sending sprays of ocean water up into the air. More often than not, the splashes bring small fish and other sea creatures into the pools, giving everyone a glimpse at the marine life in their midst. As that occurs, the kids often get all worked up and start chasing the fish around and around with glee.

When you want to take a break from all the swimming fun, you can head up to the beach to look for treasures or build driftwood creations. You can often find crabs and other small creatures along the waterline as you explore the length of the beach. Want to let the little ones run and play? Kids love to visit the Kamalani Playground that’s just around the corner from the beach.

If you’d like to settle down in one spot, you can try your hand at building impressive sandcastles or enjoy a hearty picnic lunch. When it comes time to freshen up, you just have to go over to the onsite facilities, which feature bathrooms and showers. There are plenty of trashcans onsite of Lydgate Pond as well, so you don’t have to pack out what you pack in.

Top activities at Lydgate Pond include:

Go Swimming
With the boulders blocking all the waves, the two breakwater areas feel like luxurious swimming pools. Although there’s often quite a crowd, it’s easy to find your own corner to splash around. You’re also welcome to make new friends and join in all the games if you prefer. You won’t need your boogie boards, floaties, or other swimming gear. Just swim attire and a focus on fun is all you need at Lydgate Pond.

Build Sandcastles
When you want to get your creativity flowing, there’s no better way to do that than with a sandcastle competition. Whether you compete with yourself to make the best sandcastle yet or challenge other beachgoers to a competition, you’re bound to have an amazing time. Don’t forget to use driftwood, rocks, and other found treasures in your creations to add a local spin to your results.

Have a Picnic
As you have fun at the awesome Lydgate Pond, you’ll likely end up feeling rather ravenous. Thankfully, you can use the many grills all around to whip up a hot picnic lunch to remember. If you’d rather leave the cooking to the professionals, get your picnic fare from local restaurants or delis and chow down when hunger strikes. You can either lay out a blanket for your picnic or grab one of the picnic tables if they’re open.

After large storms, it’s common to see debris in the protected pools. If you feel so inclined, you can help clean it out by bringing it up onto Lydgate Pond before taking a swim. Otherwise, park staff will likely come by soon after the storm to drag the items out of the water one by one.

Insider Tips:
-Although the water remains relatively calm year-round, always check the conditions before swimming in the ocean. You can learn all you need to know by going to the Hawaii Parks and Recreation website.
-Put your phone or camera in a waterproof case to get photos near the water without worrying about splashes.
-By mid-day, Lydgate Pond is usually quite crowded. Want it all to yourself? Arrive during the morning hours to have it pretty much all to yourself.