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Kauai bound!

Racer56

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My wife and I are leaving Thursday morning to Kauai for our anniversary. We are staying at the Princeville resort and will be there for 6 days, 5 nights.
We have been to Maui many times, but this our first time going to Kuai.

Any suggestions for restaurants and activities would be greatly appreciated.
 
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FishSniper

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My wife and I are leaving Thursday morning to Kuai for our anniversary. We are staying at the Princeville resort and will be there for 6 days, 5 nights.
We have been to Maui many times, but this our first time going to Kuai.

Any suggestions for restaurants and activities would be greatly appreciated.
Beautiful area up there on the north shore. Paddle board rentals are available on the creek flowing into Hanalei bay and you can paddle down into the bay which has a nice beach area. We also did a kayak trip up one of the rivers mid island that included a hike to a waterfall. We stayed on the south end so I don’t have any food recommendations up north. Princeville area is great you guys will have a great time.
 

One2go

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The wife and I were just talking about this last night. Going to plan a trip in October when the daughter home from college. Would love to hear people's recommendations as well !
 

throttle

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we were just there a couple months ago, the Princeville Resort was said to begin some renovations. Its a really nice location, we stayed down the street from it and went there for breakfast a couple times. The view from the Princeville Resort overlooking Hanalei with the steep green cliffs and waterfalls was amazing. lots to see and do. I will write a few hints for you in a bit. gotta run for now.
 

sixdays

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Kilauea Fish Market is a go to for us. Grab some shave ice from the food truck in Hanalei. Calypso’s has some decent food and the Blue Dolphin is good and right on the Hanalei River. Chicken in a Barrel is pretty good bbq for a quick meal and we usually hit Ono Char for burgers cause it’s kind of a local thing.

We always try to hit the farmers markets for fresh fruit as there is some cool produce you can’t find here. Don’t forget that Costco is close to the airport and worth a stop for booze and essentials. Lots of people buy the Tommy Bahama beach chairs and just leave them at the condo/hotel because it’s cheaper than renting chairs for the trip.

Take a trip to Poipu to explore. We’ve had some good meals at the Beach House.
 

boatpi

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You have to do a helicopter tour or the kayak ride on the only river you can navigate in the state of Hawaii it’s great to Jurassic fall. Or this
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rivermobster

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Hint:. Everything closes up before 8pm!!! Always keep this in mind.

Helo ride? Hell yeah, but don't do the big cattle copters...

We found a guy with a Bell with no doors that took us on a low level flight. We even landed Inside a dormant volcano. That was the highlight of our trip!
 

racektm

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Just got back, Hanalei Dolphin for fish, Kauai sporting clays for fun, lots of fun!
 

DeltaSigBoater

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WORST VACATION EVER!!!

I'll never go back to that shit hole of an island!

I went during mid-September.

We rented a VRBO in Princeville, house had no HVAC system.

Everything is closed by 8, and most of the places start closing down shortly after 7.

It is a solid hour drive with NO traffic from Lihue and vice versa, plan accordingly.

Locally it was a 10 minute drive to the Princeville shopping center, and a 15-20 minute drive to Hanalei.

I think there were 3 Ubers on the entire island, and outside of Lihue I never saw a taxi.

Chickens, Roosters and Feral Cats are everywhere.
 

SPFRONTMAN

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WORST VACATION EVER!!!

I'll never go back to that shit hole of an island!

I went during mid-September.

We rented a VRBO in Princeville, house had no HVAC system.

Everything is closed by 8, and most of the places start closing down shortly after 7.

It is a solid hour drive with NO traffic from Lihue and vice versa, plan accordingly.

Locally it was a 10 minute drive to the Princeville shopping center, and a 15-20 minute drive to Hanalei.

I think there were 3 Ubers on the entire island, and outside of Lihue I never saw a taxi.

Chickens, Roosters and Feral Cats are everywhere.
That's funny about the roosters, I stay in Lihue overlooking Kalapaki Beach and never see a cat. Yes, that drive from Princeville to Lihue thru Kapa'a is murder, don't go when people are going to and from work!
 

boatpi

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That is why I do not stay in Princeville, way too far out, but it has much to offer. IF you are cooking, you MUST stop at Costco when you arrive, way too far to drive to later.
 

WhatExit?

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HNL2LHC

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WORST VACATION EVER!!!

I'll never go back to that shit hole of an island!

I went during mid-September.

We rented a VRBO in Princeville, house had no HVAC system.

Everything is closed by 8, and most of the places start closing down shortly after 7.

It is a solid hour drive with NO traffic from Lihue and vice versa, plan accordingly.

Locally it was a 10 minute drive to the Princeville shopping center, and a 15-20 minute drive to Hanalei.

I think there were 3 Ubers on the entire island, and outside of Lihue I never saw a taxi.

Chickens, Roosters and Feral Cats are everywhere.


Sorry that you didn’t like your vacation to Kauai. Looks like you might not have looked into your vacation enough before your visit. That is what is great about Hawaii. If you want to go back to the beauty of Hawaii Kauai is it. If you want action you should check out Waikiki or Maui. As for the traffic it is ever present in the islands. The amount of tourists these days are crazy and social media has only made it worst in those quite neighborhoods.
 

2Driver

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Been going for 25 years and at least 7 or 8 times. Depends on what you like to do and where you are staying on the island?
 

throttle

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Kauai not for everyone. It IS indeed a different vibe than the other islands. It’s amazingly lush, green mountains, valleys and waterfalls. Lots less people, however NO freeways. From one side to the other is a two lane highway that gets busy thru a couple sections of Kapaa. Beach access can be challenging as rock cliffs, wet slippery trails are used to hike down to amazing untouched secluded sandy beaches. Yup, pick your poison.

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My wife and I have been traveling the islands for the past several years. Very fortunate and feel blessed. We dream of it being home to us for a few months each year, not sure yet where tho.
We just returned from Kauai a couple months ago. I had never been. In some of my planning and research here are a couple thoughts I have shared with others that ask and worked well for us.
[emoji843]First and foremost, it’s very low key. Upscale and thriving areas in my opinion would be Princeville and Poipu.

[emoji843]when we arrived, we get bags to curb, wife stays curbside with bags and I take shuttle to rental car office. grab your rental car then come back to curb for wife and bags. (Efficiency without dragging bags on shuttles and it’s pretty fast)

[emoji843]you gonna be hungry after traveling, Duke’s was just 5-10minute drive from airport. They have valet and safe place with bags in vehicle. I picked Duke’s because it’s close to airport, you get feet in sand with a drink in hand and the view of the bay is easy on eyes. We able to get the aloha vibe right away.

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[emoji843]our next stop was Walmart. There is a Costco close too.

[emoji843]with full bellies, I know I had some spare time before just driving to Princeville so I had researched Wailua Falls (170 feet). A short detour, 10 maybe 20 minutes off our route and our view again... [emoji471] the road leading to these falls is a dead end with a small parking lot that is just 100 steps from the overlook to see this. Again, with bags in Jeep, I want to be close. We popped some champagne and take in the view. It was well worth the time. But not sure I would make a special trip for it unless I planned it out to hike or paddleboard up the river to it with lunch.

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[emoji843]Foodland in Princeville will have everything you prolly need. The Poke is always on point! And ready to go sandwiches, salads and fruit for our day to day destinations.

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[emoji843]Wiamea Canyon was really cool too. Lots of places to stop and take on the scenery with a packed meal. If it seems like a long drive from Princeville, it was. However we started early and finished the day at a couple of the Poipu beaches.

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Watch for monk seals, don’t get to close to them

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[emoji843]Finished this same day at “The Beach House” for sunset dinner. It’s amazing food, drinks and view! The drive back feels really far. Maybe 45 minutes back to Princeville when dark, after dinner and a drink or two. I could easily see why the road is nicknamed “blood alley”. Wet, maybe raining, 2 lane road with no street lights. Usually I don’t think much of it of but I did that nite.

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[emoji843]when staying in Princeville, I will offer this... stay on the same side of island on the weekends. Do your excursions to the south side during the weekdays when possible.

[emoji843]Check out “secret beach”, a short drive from where u are staying. Do not leave valuables in car. the hike down isn’t too bad. We take shoes but we prefer to hike up and back in the mud barefoot.

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[emoji843]check out “queens bath”, also near your resort. Trail in between dirt parking lot and tennis courts. It’s a serious hike / climb. Use caution when wet, hold the ropes. Watch for waves and tide changes.

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DeltaSigBoater

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Sorry that you didn’t like your vacation to Kauai. Looks like you might not have looked into your vacation enough before your visit. That is what is great about Hawaii. If you want to go back to the beauty of Hawaii Kauai is it. If you want action you should check out Waikiki or Maui. As for the traffic it is ever present in the islands. The amount of tourists these days are crazy and social media has only made it worst in those quite neighborhoods.

It was a family vacation, and when those words were first uttered I lobbied hard for an Adult Only Mexican Resort or Maui.

I don't know how Kauai got chosen as I was told that the island is really a place for honeymoons & anniversaries and those who like strenuous hikes and my idea of a strenuous hike is walking up the launch ramp at Mead to get the truck when it's 110*+ in the shade! That said, initially it looked like a great trip and I was 100% excited to go.

But with 9 other people (8 of which were couples), all with their own agendas and egos, what I wanted to do and see didn'tseemtofuckingmatter. And with only 2 rental cars my brother (also single) and I got suck at the house for the majority of the trip.
 

stephenkatsea

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If you're interested in night life and entertainment Kauai is not the place for you. Yes, it pretty much shuts down around 8pm. For a beach we enjoy Kalihiwai Beach. No facilities there, so bring what you want with you. A river enters the ocean at this beach. We take inflatable air mattresses and paddle up that river. There are falls up a ways. I've heard locals have posted signs that say "Private Beach", but it is not. My brother purchased a Hanalei Villa when they were new about 1976. My sister and BIL built and lived in a Princeville home for a number of years. My parents were good friends with Louise Marsten, owner and founder of Tahiti Nui. We first went to Princeville in 1976. Traffic was not an issue, but it is now. And golf was very affordable. Also not the case now, at some courses.
 
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bowtiejunkie

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Wife and I stayed at the Grand Hyatt in July 2018 for 7 nights. Drove around the whole island (except the flooding closed roads on Northside). Low key island. We enjoyed it. As I recall there are 4 distinct areas of the island. We explored one area each day, with a few days laying on the beach in front of hotel. Just time your driving around the work rush hour traffic. No big deal.

There’s some many places to see, it’s impossible to see it all even in 7 days. If the weather sucks in one area, it’s likely nice in another.

Duke’s
Kauai Beer Compny
Puka Dog
Kauai Coffe Company
McBryde & Allerton Gardens
Garden Island Grill (geckos like to eat with you)

Some days we’d pick up sandwiches, snacks, and a loaner ice chest from Poipu Bay Golf club, chuck a few beers in there and head out. Stop at a beach or three, have a beer and enjoy the peace and quiet.

Can’t really go wrong with any of the Hawaiian Islands IMO.
 

2Driver

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Here’s my 2 cents

Being in Princeville if you plan on going to the end of the road go super early. The end gets jammed and it runs out of places to park fast. Lots of folks go there to snorkel at Tunnels, which is nice, or hike the Napali trail. If you like to hike, do the Napali tail to the first beach or up from that beach to a killer waterfall....it is awesome.

A good lunch spot is Kilauea fish Market if you are in the area off the highway that goes to the light house. The Dolphin is good if in Hanalei. Secret beach is fun, but it is not secret anymore, it was back in the 90’s, you had it to yourself and there was almost no trail. Don't believe the guide info if they still say it’s secluded and don’t leave anything in your car. Larsens beach would be another fun walk to, no services type beach. A drive down to, since your in the area, Annini beach is cool to check out.

If you have a little too much rain head over to Poipu beach it is usually dry and warmer, thats where we always stay. Check out the Hyatt, they have a nice set up and Poipu has several nice restaurants. If you have time, keep driving through the Hyatt grounds and the road turns to dirt. Follow it until it T's then go right to the beach area. Go past the first dirt parking with the tall trees and continue till the road hits the ocean. That beach is really nice and you can continue on hiking up and over the short cliffs to another small Cresent beach. There are places where the caves beneath the cliffs blow air up though the sand. Incoming waves hit the cliffs and send pressured air up through the lava under the sand. You can put your hat in the sand and it will toss your hat in the air. You won’t see too many folks, maybe local fisherman, and it is superb scenery. I’ll try to find some pics. Traffic does suck a bit so allow a good hour plus to make it around to Poipu and it can be worse in rush times.

If Star Grocery stores are still there stop and get the fried chicken to go. There was one adjacent to Costco. BTW Costco has super cheap boogie boards and soft paddle boards. Personally I couldn’t stand being in a Costco on vacation - Aloha buzz kill :D
 
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stephenkatsea

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My sister and BIL, who lived in Princeville and he’s a very experienced surfer, would tell newcomers, “In the winter do not turn your back on the ocean”. Hideaways Beach at Princeville is unique. First time we went my wife thought she was walking on grass to peak over the cliff. I had to grab her. What she thought was grass was actually the tops of trees many feet below. The path down to this beach gets very slippery when it rains. Which is every day in Hanalei/Princeville.The wettest place on earth is the mountain behind there. We enjoyed using binoculars in the morning to view the numerous water falls flowing down from the mountain.

The south side of the island, Poipu area, tends to be drier. There’s even a desert area near Barking Sands.
 

throttle

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As mentioned, I agree the Grand Hyatt [emoji106][emoji106]

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Note; Napili coast trail for any hiking and parking requires a permit. Try to get, well not much time to do in advance but try anyway.


Soak it up,

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throttle

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BTW,

Hau’ oli la hanau! Happy anniversary!


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stephenkatsea

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Kauai is actually closer to the Aleutians than it is to Los Angeles.
 

Ricks raft

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if you checked the other threads tons of info.
Smith Family luau. local famly run not corporate. river cruise dinner combo is a good afternoon evening.
 

mobldj

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2 words....BUBBA BURGERS !!!
 

sixdays

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2 words....BUBBA BURGERS !!!
One word...GONE! lol...

Bubba Burgers closes up in Hanalei a few years ago...

edit...looks like there may still be one in Kapaa. We miss the one in Hanalei...
 

Racer56

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One word...GONE! lol...

Bubba Burgers closes up in Hanalei a few years ago...

edit...looks like there may still be one in Kapaa. We miss the one in Hanalei...

We are in Kapaa eating at a Mexican restaurant about a block away from Bubba Burger. Traffic is horrendous here. Had to stop for margaritas and taco's.
 

boatpi

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Beach house restaurant absolutely the best on the island not to mention the spectacular reviews. This photo was taken from my dining room table.
 

Deja_Vu

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Man I have been to Kauai only twice for a week each time and I was ready to stay another week.

First time we stayed in Poipou and rented a condo next to the beach house... Kuhio shores. Was awesome 2br oceanfront but no AC which is tough with the humidity. We found taking a shower before bed brings down the body temp and you can get to sleep.

Beach house was great we had our 25th anniversary dinner there. The blowhole is cool, lots of hiking at Waimea canyon, Snorkel at poipou beach.

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Next time we rented a 3br home in princeville for a week with a/c and jacuzzi and pool in the complex. We snorkeled Tunnels beach, Cruised Hanalei town, dipped in Queens bath. My daughter got married on Anini beach. We enjoyed Smiths family Luau And botanical garden near the Wailua River. The lighthouse, Wailua falls.

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Deja_Vu

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Awesome! I love that bar overlooking the ocean. It was the St. Regis when I was there last.
 

FreeBird236

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Have a great time, love Hawaii, just made reservations for the big island in October.
 
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