People vacation to each of the Hawaiian islands for different reasons. They visit the Big Island for the volcanoes and attractions, Oahu for the surfing and culture, Maui for the beaches… Kauai is a little different. Many people flock to Kauai for the natural scenery and serenity.
Aptly named the Garden Isle, Kauai is covered in lush jungles, quiet beaches, secret waterfalls, and dramatic cliffs. When looking for a Hawaiian vacation away from the hustle and bustle of the larger islands, Kauai provides a tranquil island escape.
Are you planning an adventure to Kauai? Here are our top summer vacation spots on the Garden Isle:
Lihue is the cultural, historical, and business center of Kauai. As the capital city, Lihue offers a full experience into Hawaii’s rich culture with luaus, beaches, shopping, and exquisite food. This vacation spot also offers world-class accommodations, including the luxurious Kauai Marriott Resort. The Kauai Marriott Resort is located right on the shore and provides a premier vacation experience. They offer modern rooms, world-class restaurants, and one of Hawaii’s largest outdoor pools. The Kauai Marriot Resort is also a bit of a golfer’s paradise, as it’s home to the longest golf course in Hawaii.
As the major travel port of Kauai, Lihue is your gateway to exploration and adventure. Stay in Lihue and easily travel to any of the major attractions on Kauai.
The Coconut Coast (the East Coast)
Just north of Lihue lies the Coconut Coast. When you travel to the east shore of Kauai, you’ll see why it’s called the Coconut Coast. Hundreds of coconut trees stretch as far as the eye can see. Pina Coladas anyone? Of course, in the midst of towering, aromatic coconut trees, you’ll also find white sandy beaches, verdant jungles, mountains, and valleys.
On the coconut coast, you’ll also find affordable accommodations and premier dining. This area includes the Anahola, Kapa’a, and Wailua communities.
Kapa’a & Anahola
Kapa’a, which means solid in Hawaiian, is a lovely community with many affordable hotels, shopping centers, and great places to eat. Water sports are very popular in Kapa’a, so grab a kayak and explore if you stay here. Anahola is a very small town next to Anahola Bay, a place perfect for snorkeling and swimming. Take a dive under the water and explore the long coral reef!
Wailua is one of the more popular places to visit on the Coconut Coast because Wailua is home to the famous Wailua River, Wailua Valley, and the Fern Grotto. Along the river, you’ll find Wailua Falls, a towering 80 ft. waterfall located near the road. Although there aren’t many lodging options in Wailua, most people will opt to stay nearby in Kapa’a to remain close to adventures Wailua has to offer.
The Southern Shore
On the Southern Shore, the weather is warm and comfortable. The beaches are easily accessible and the towns provide the same tastes of culture you’ll find on the other islands. An especially great vacation spot on the south shore is Poipu.
Poipu Beach is voted one of America’s Best Beaches by the Travel Channel. Take a dip in 1,100 feet of soft golden shorelines. Poipu is full of stunning resorts, villas, and hotels for the perfect night’s sleep.
The Northern Shore
When you imagine Hawaii, you picture verdant jungles with blossoming flowers, tropical fruit, towering waterfalls and mountains, and essentially, a lush paradise. Kauai’s northern shore is one of the more scenic and secluded places you’ll find in Hawaii. The north shore is home to Princeville and Hanalei.
Princeville seems like it was made for royalty. Princeville’s luxury accommodations are some of the most prestigious on the island. Exceptional rooms with top-tier amenities make Princeville one of the best places to stay in Kauai.
Take a stroll down the historic Hanalei Pier at twilight to see an unbelievable sunset. Hanalei is home to two miles of beach at Hanalei Bay. Spend some time exploring this lush paradise when you stay at the several resorts in Hanalei.
This Week Hawaii
Ready to say aloha to adventure? This Week Hawaii is your go-to resource for planning your time in paradise. Our team is dedicated to bringing you the latest destinations, tips, advice, itineraries, and insights to make the most of your vacation. We’re here to help you find the best activities, events, entertainment, and dining when you visit Hawaii.