• The North and East sides of Kaua’i get a LOT of rain – you should assume that it will rain and dress accordingly (workout dri-fit clothes that dry quickly work best).
  • The town of Kapa’a has bad traffic – expect to sit in traffic for up to an hour crossing Kapaa. Plan your travels in a way to avoid going through Kapa’a as much as you can.
  • If you feel like it, visit one or more of the 3 Botanical Gardens – Allerton, McBryde and Limahuli. Allerton and McBryde and on the South side and Limahuli is on the North side. Visiting is not cheap. Allerton and McBryde are right next to each other – you drive to the same parking lot and then a shuttle takes you to the garden you are visiting.

Must Do

  • Drive on the 550 from Waimea town to Pu’u O Kila Lookout – excellent views of the Waimea Canyon along the way. Excellent views of Kalalau Valley at the Pu’u O Kila Lookout
  • Take a helicopter / fixed wing aircraft tour – the views are spectacular.
  • Hike the Kalalau trail. The hike is a treacherous 22-mile roundtrip trail. Do as much as you can – the views are spectacular.
  • Visit the Spouting Horn. Right by the parking lot are kiosks selling trinkets and souvenirs – this is a great place to buy.
  • Eat a Puka Dog for lunch. This place gets crowded, so try to go at a odd time
  • Eat and drink at the Kaua’i Island Brewery and Grill. They have good beers and the Pupus (appetizer) sampler is great.
  • Visit the Kaua’i Coffee Company. They offer free guided tours and you can sample as much free coffee as you want
  • Hike the Mahaulepu Heritage Trail – nice hike along the ocean starting from Shipwreck beach.
  • Visit the North Shore: Princeville, Hanalei town, Hanalei Bay, Hanalei Valley Lookout, Maniniholo Dry Cave, Kilauea Point Lighthouse and National Wildlife Refuge.

Should Do

  • Hike the Pihea trail from Pu’u O Kila Lookout to the Pihea Vista Junction – this hike has great views of the Kalalau Valley
  • Visit the Kōloa Rum Company. You can sample Koloa rums for free.
  • Visit the Wailua Falls
  • Hike the Waipoo Falls Trail to the top of the Waipoo Falls. This is a difficult 4-mile roundtrip hike that takes you to the top of the Waipoo Falls.

Don’t Bother

  • Don’t bother eating Bubba Burger.
  • Don’t bother visiting the Opaeka’a Falls – nothing great

To-do for next time

  • Snorkeling
  • Take a boat trip to Na Pali Coast
  • Eat Duane’s Ono-Char Burger in Anahola


Pictures taken with a Canon T3I and an iPhone 6. No filters were used. No post-processing was done.