The Bright Eyes Sea Cave is one of the many caves on Kauai. Only accessible by boat, kayak, or helicopter this cave is a relaxing and breathtaking place to visit. The cave was formed by lava flows about 2,000 years ago and it has been eroded by the sea ever since. Waves rush in through an opening at high tide and you can hear them pounding against the rocks inside as they recede at low tide.
Snorkeling the Bright Eye Sea Cave
This open ceiling cave is also known as the “Queen’s Bath” and is a popular snorkeling spot. The water in the cave comes from a freshwater stream and exits out to sea at another opening on the opposite side of the main entrance, but it can be accessed by swimming through an underwater tunnel that connects with this second exit.
While this open-ceiling cave is a fantastic sight to enjoy, there is just as much to see below the water as above it. Bright Eye Sea Cave is a popular snorkeling spot and the Hawaiian green sea turtles often swim through its entrance. The cave’s ceiling creates an almost perfectly calm reflection of water below, creating a mirror image that makes you feel like you are floating in mid-air over the ocean waves crashing against rocks below.
You can also catch glimpses of spotted eagle rays swimming through the water. The ocean floor is covered with coral, which provides a home for various fish species to hide in including parrotfish, triggerfish, Moorish idols, butterflyfish, angelfish, and more.
When To Visit Queen’s Bath
If you are planning a visit to see this stunning sea cave, you may want to make sure that you make your visit during the summer. In the winter you may be dealing with larger waves crashing into the cave, which can make it more difficult to enter and exit. The Na Pali Coast can have some rougher ocean conditions in the winter, so if you are facing choppy water it may be best to wait until the summer or early fall when there is less chance of these conditions at sea.
In terms of the various tides, while the high tide doesn’t risk trapping anyone with the lack of a cave ceiling, it is best to visit at low tide so that you can also experience some of the amazing surrounding tide pools.
Bright Eye Sea Cave Safety Tips
Make sure before you go out to check the surf forecast. This will help you to determine if the conditions are right for visiting the sea cave, and it can also give you an idea of whether or not there is a chance of rain during your visit that could cause dangerous flooding in the area around this natural feature.
Be sure to pay attention when entering and exiting through either opening to avoid injury.
Do not attempt to climb onto the rocks surrounding this cave, as they are extremely slippery and can be unstable due to erosion. If you are walking on them barefoot it is recommended that you use water shoes or something similar for grip protection.
Remember that if there is a chance of rain while visiting these tide pools near the sea cave then the rocks will become even more slippery and dangerous.