Kauai, the Cradle of Blissful Peace
The least commercially developed of the Hawaiian Islands, Kauai is said to be the geographically oldest island in all of Hawaii. Perhaps this accounts for the mystifying legends, sheer sense of serenity and relaxing invigoration that this island imbues.
The northwestern most of Hawaii’s major islands and the fourth largest of the Hawaiian archipelago, Kauai is nicknamed the Garden Island as it’s covered with lush greenery watered regularly by abundant rainfall.
Having endured the forces of nature over the years, Kauai has been awarded with natural wonders such as Waimea Canyon and the Na Pali Coast.
Today Kauai sits in blissful peace, unsaved by the hands of commercialization and thus fully appealing to the tourist looking for a quite getaway in a pristine setting. Indeed, Kauai is the tropical centerpiece of Hawaii, complete with a wide array outdoor activities, several attractions and a vibrant culture.
Indeed, Kauai is all about exploring the offerings of Mother Nature. From its humbling natural wonders to excellent surfing and snorkeling opportunities, Kauai offers the true island experience.
Taking a break from nature, visitors may enjoy the scenery, atmosphere and culture of Kauai’s small towns such as Hanapepe, Hanalei and Old Koloa Town. Here, one may enjoy great local food and learn about the island’s culture, history and art.
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How to Get To Kauai
Presently, numerous airlines offer direct service to Kauai; arriving at Kauai’s main airport, Lihue Airport (LIH) in southeastern Lihue. There is also the option of flying into Honolulu International Airport (HNL) on Oahu and then heading to Kauai on a smaller aircraft or connected flight.
When to Go To Kauai
Kauai joins the rest of Hawaii in being a great destination all year round, weather wise. With an average temperature ranging from 69o F to 85o F, the atmosphere is generally great for outdoor activities. Still, there are slight changes in weather as the seasons change. The summer tends to see temperates on the higher end of the range while things cool down during the winter months.
While the temperature is generally peachy, visitors should note that it does rain a lot here with the rain poring heavily, especially in the afternoons. In fact, Kauai is partly known as the “garden island” because it has the wettest climate and is the lushest of the Hawaiian Islands.
Getting Around Kauai
There are really only two major, connected highways in Kauai has with one major road that rings the island except along the Napali Coast. Much of the road is just one lane in either direction, however in certain areas it widens to two lanes. The best way to get around the island is by car as the public transportation system does not cater to tourists.
While taxis congregate at the main airport, waiting to take passengers around the island, for travelers looking to truly see the island, a rental vehicle is the best option.
During rush hour, the major thoroughfares may become extremely congested, especially close to the Wailua and Kapa’a area. As such, plan for trips to take double the amount of time one would normally expect based on distance alone. Generally speaking, to avoid traffic, it pays to base your accommodation plans on the kind of vacation you envision as it relates to dividing time among locations.
Accommodation options in Kauai include several timeshare units, guest cottages, intimate bed and breakfast hotels, resorts offers fine dining and world-class amenities.
As you may realize, the island is largely rugged and rural. As such, it’s really meant for people who are willing to sweat and get dirty to see the sights as most tours involve getting water, exposure to the sun or trotting through the jungle.
- Tour Farms and Plantations: Kauai is home to a lot of farms and plantations which allows guests to tour the grounds and sample their offerings. Others are of historical significance, for example Grove Farm Homestead is a former sugar cane plantation.
- Opaekaa and Wailua Falls: Opaekaa is a set of easily accessible waterfalls that offer splendid views for visitors. Though possessing an excellent, picture perfect scenery, Wailua is a bit more secluded and viewing stations are limited.
- National Tropical Botanical Gardens: An excellent site for nature lovers, the gardens offer an escape into the world of delicate flowers and vibrant wildlife.
- Waimea Canyon: In many ways comparable the Grand Canyon, Waimea Canyon boasts an amazing color palette. Also known as the Grand Canyon of the Pacific, Waimea Canyon stretches over 14 miles long and provides panoramic views of rugged crags and deep valley gorges.
- Prisinte Beaches along Na Pali Coast: The Na Pali coast is a strip of amazing coastline, setting for the blockbuster Jurassic Park. Here, where visitors may enjoy Kauai’s pristine beaches as well as views of the island’s impressive cliffs, canyons and rainforests. Popular beaches in Kauai include Anini Beach Park, Lydgate Beach Park and Poipu Beach Park.
There are also several movie sites to see on Kauai; including the famous Jurassic Park!
The emerald pinnacles of the Na Pali Coast and misty mountains of Hanalei are simply a few of the features that speak to the tropical paradise that is Kauai. Here, visitors will lose themselves to the gentle trade winds whilst admiring the fresh floral environment that abounds. If there ever was one, Kauai is a true example of appeasing island beauty.