I had so many of you ask me about our Kauai trip and details of what we did and where we stayed. I had planned on coming right home and writing about all of it the very next day, but... wow the red-eye and jet lag are real and I've been trying to get our schedules back on track. But we are pretty much all caught up around here and I've just tucked my kids into bed and snuck away to my office for a bit to write out all the details for you.
KAUAI TRAVEL GUIDE
Kauai is known as the "Garden Isle." Which will not surprise you as its rainforest features cover most of the island. And a lot of the island has managed to stay undeveloped (which I loved). One of the most naturally breathtaking places in the world. It is an island full of adventure with amazing beaches, hikes and amazing resorts.
We stayed in Princeville, at the Westin. It is a fantastic family resort with really fun kids activities. We did lei-making one day, hula lessons and coconut postcards. The kids loved it all. They have several pools on the resort as well. They also have a little kiddie pool, but the best part about it? All the pools are only 4 feet deep. They have a restaurant, small market and a bar-grill on the resort which makes it really nice if you want to spend time poolside. All the rooms have small kitchens so we prepared a lot of our lunches and breakfasts at "home."
O.k. Here is the List of the things we did with links and my
input and opinion on each activity.
Napali Coast Airplane Tour with SkyDive Kauai-
YES, YES, and YES! A must do.
Anyone who has been there knows – Na Pali Coast is one of the true wonders of the world. This fifteen-mile stretch of rugged coastline on the northwest shore of Kauai literally means "The Cliffs." A must-do activity on any Kauai vacation.
Honestly it was one of the most beautiful and breathtaking views and I would absolutely recommend this. We did a private plane tour with sky dive Kauai and they were fantastic. I linked it above.
Picture taken by my talented hubby @dreamspacephotography
Pretty much everyone we asked who had visited Kauai recommended Kauai BackCountry adventures tubing adventure. Where you tube through the sugar cane plantation and beatiful Kauai scenery. It's great for ages 5 and up. If I'm Completely honest I would not do this again or recommend it. I wish we would have zip lined instead but my girls didn't weigh enough. Lots of people have loved it though so remember this is just my opinion.
My kids LOVED this beach and so did we. And it really is a secret because for the most part it is pretty private with amazing sand and great waves. CAUTION: In winter, on some days the waves are too high to get in the water at Secrets. There is a bit of a trail hike to get down to the beach, but not to bad at all. My young girls had no problem getting to and from the beach. It is a must visit!
For some of my favorite modest swimsuits and shorts Click Here!
We all took surf lessons at Hanalei Beach with pro surfer Evan Valiere and it was amazing and so much fun. We was a fantastic teacher and I would highly recommend him and his surf school. The kids loved it!
I thought since we were in Hawaii we had to take the girls to a Luau. We heard the Smith's one was the best. The food was ok, but the show was pretty disappointing. If you have never been to a luau before you may enjoy it, but after seeing the Luau at the Polynesian culture center you will be disappointed with this one and it was pretty expensive for what it was.
Queen's Bath in Princeville is a MUST SEE! It is beautiful scenery and breathtaking. That being said it is a short (could be muddy and slippery) hike so wear shoes that you don't mind gettin' dirty in. My 8 and 12 year olds were able to do it just fine, but I did see some people carrying babies and some older people that were struggling. Sometimes the tide is very high and there have been deaths there so do your research before going and stay safe. I have provided the trip advisor link so you can read the review and suggestions for this adventure.
This double tiered waterfall is gorgeous! A must see for sure and another reason I recommend it is because there is no need to hike it to get up close and personal. The viewing area up top has a fantastic view. There is a trail you can hike to get down to it and several have said they have done it, but it is not recommended. We did not hike the trail. We viewed it from up top and it was beautiful! Also while we were there we were lucky enough to get a double rainbow. A double waterfall and double rainbow?!?! It doesn't get much better than that!
We did the dinner and whale watching cruise with Kauai Sea Tours and it was amazing! My kids say it was their most favorite thing we did. The view of the Na Pali Coast by boat is just breathtaking. We saw sooo many whales (Whale season is late December to mid March). It was honestly one of my favorite things too. It was amazing. We had been warned by locals that the seas can get rough. I have sailed on a number of different occasions and you can see by the pic below we had beautiful calm waters. Buuuuuuttttt... If you get tend to get sea sick you will want to take something or reconsider this activity as this might not be the excursion for you. We saw a few people that sat at the back of the boat with a bucket the entire time :-(
This is one of the most breathtaking hikes. I would absolutely recommend it. We didn't make it to the falls because my kids were tired of hiking and wanted to go back to the beach but if you have the time and energy this is a must on your vacay. The views were spectacular!
Waimea Canyon, on Kauai's West Side, is the "Grand Canyon of the Pacific." And it is a definite must see. It stretches 14 miles long and 1 mile wide and is sooo soooo beautiful. My husband was in complete awe.
FoodLand Grocery: I went to the Foodland grocery store in Princeville about 4 times when we were there and bought groceries. I packed pretty much all of our lunches and we had breakfast in the room every morning. We really only ate out at night and a few lunches when we were on adventures. I always pack my cooler backpack for vacations especially with the kids and always needing snacks and little sandwiches. It's a life saver.
Pinks Creamery in Hanalei: Ummm if you watched my instagram you saw that I went there pretty much everyday. Here's the deal... I don't like ice cream. Weird, I know, but we went and I tried this cherry fudge ice cream that they had and I about died. I pretty much decided then and there that I could eat it everyday for the rest of my life. So go try it and please have a bite...or ten for me.
JoJos is known to be the best shaved ice on the island and I would probably have to agree. Located in Hanalei and Waimea. They have delicious flavors, but be ready to wait in line for just a bit as it usually draws a crowd.
This is a little taco truck that is parked at Hanalei Pier and they are delicious. Here is the secret about these; They only serve tacos 12-3 P.M. or until they run out whichever comes first and it's usually that they run out so get there early.
This is also a food truck in the Hanalei Big Save parking lot. Nina serves up organic, fresh, cold pressed, juices and smoothies and they are incredible. I recommend swinging by and grabbing one of her delicious smoothies.
I hope this is helpful in giving you some insight and things to put on your list while you are in paradise. It was one of the greatest vacations I have ever been on with my family and memories were made that I will not soon forget. May you have a beautiful time on the island.
I’ll be in Kauai in March… thanks for all of the great tips! And I’ll be sure to have some ice cream for you.
Thank you so much for All the great info! My husband and I are going in June and staying at the exact same resort you did! It’s our first time visiting Hawaii so it’s great to have some great recommendations. Thank you!! ❤️