Tip: This town has a view of two islands off Maui’s coast, Moloka'i and Lana'i.


About the Island of Kauai

Beautiful, Green Garden Isle

While Kauai's reputation as home to the wettest spot on Earth — Mount Wai'ale'ale, averaging 485 inches of rain per year — has lead to its popular designation as "The Garden Isle," the island has another, older name: "The Separate Kingdom."

History
In part this is

because Kauai may have been the first of the Hawaiian Islands to be settled by Marquesan seafarers, somewhere around 750 A.D. Combined with its remoteness from the rest of the island chain, this may also have led to the belief that Kauai's royal bloodline was the purest in the Islands. Kauai was also the only island in the chain to withstand the army of Kamehameha the Great as he swept through the rest of the archipelago in the late 1700s, on his quest to unify Hawaii under one king. (Kamehameha would eventually have his way, however, when Kauai's chief Kaumuali'i peacefully ceded authority over his island to the king in 1810.) Point of "Discovery"
Kauai was the first Hawaiian Island English explorer Capt. James Cook stumbled upon in 1778, while sailing from Tahiti toward North America. While it has long been believed that Cook was the first European to set foot in the Islands — he first did so at Waimea, on Kauai's southwest coast — recent evidence has some historians claiming that Spanish sailors may have visited the Islands more than a century earlier.

Geography
The oldest of the main Hawaiian Islands, it is believed the volcano that created Kauai first began erupting some 10 million years ago. Once rising more than 10,000 feet above sea level, Olokele Volcano has since eroded down to two main peaks — Wai'ale'ale (5,148 feet) and Kawaikini (5,243 feet) — with the rest of the mountain sinking to form the crater that is home to Alaka'i Swamp. Alaka'i Swamp is the largest high-elevation swamp in the world and the starting point for Waimea River, the longest river in the Islands. The 3,000-foot-deep Waimea Canyon, dubbed "The Grand Canyon of the Pacific," is also the product of these erosive forces.

Kauai's age has also led to something of a geographic anomaly: Although it is one of the smallest of the main Hawaiian Islands, the forces of nature have had more time to break the island down and produce more sand beach around its 110-mile coastline than any other island in the chain. Meanwhile, it remains the least populated of Hawaii's four counties (with roughly 56,000 permanent residents), and both development and tourism have been concentrated in relatively few locations. All of which furthers the sense that Kauai is, in fact, a separate kingdom.

What's More ...
• The average temperature at Lihu'e Airport ranges between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit year round.

Wai'ale'ale is aptly named — the word translates as "rippling or overflowing water."

• Kauai plays host to several major events each year, including the Waimea Town Celebration in February; the Prince Albert Music Festival in June; the Kauai Mokihana Festival in September; and Koke'e Museum's Emalani Festival in October.

• Kauai's official flower is the mokihana (green berry)

• The island's official color is purple

Articles Related to This One
Shop for
Package type:
Departing from:
Depart:
 
Going to:
Return:
 
Adults:
Seniors:
Children:
Search for packages
More package search options from Expedia
Going to:
Arrive:  
Return:  
Adults:
Seniors:
Children:
Search for packages
More Package search options from Expedia
Departing from:
Depart:
 
Going to:
Return:
 
Adults:
Seniors:
Children:
Search for flights
More flight search options from Expedia
Search for hotels in:
Check-in: Check-out:
Rooms:
Adults:
Children:
  Adults:
Children:
  Adults:
Children:
Search for hotels
More hotel search options from Expedia
Pick-up location:
Pick-up:
Drop-off:
Car class:
Search for cars
More car search options from Expedia
Select a top destination:
Departing in:
Cruise length:
Search for cruises
More cruise search options from Expedia
Destination:
Start date:
End date:
Search for activities
More activity search options from Expedia
Current Specials - Kauai
  • From $855 - Oahu & Kauai Island Hopping 6 Nights Incl. Air, Transfers & Daily Breakfast. Choose your favorite hotel for your stay!
  • From $1,219 - Big Island + Kauai + Maui Island Hopping Trip: 9 Nights Incl. Air, Transfers, Hotels, Breakfast & Taxes
  • Kauai Condo/Car Packages from as low as $129!
  • Free additional driver with Discount Hawaii Car Rental
  • $815+ Kauai Marriott Resort on Kalapaki Beach: 3 Nights with Air & Car. Includes FREE midsize car rental PLUS kids 17 and younger stay FREE.
  • $1,195+ The St. Regis Princeville Resort: 3 nights with air and car. Includes FREE midsize car, PLUS kids 17 & younger stay FREE.
  • From $1,047 - 9 Nights Island Hopping: Oahu, Kauai & Maui w/Air, Hotel & Breakfast. Spend 3 Nights in each island.
  • Save 25% on your Kauai Vacation Condo
  • $605+ Kauai 3 nights with Air. FREE midsize Car Rental at select resorts.
  • Discount Hawaii Car Rental - Jeeps, exotic cars, motorcycles, and more!
More of our Current Specials on Kauai
Packages

Hawaiian Airlines: Special Offers
Hot Clicks - All Islands
  • Save up to 50% on your car rental with major USA car companies - Discount Hawaii Car Rental
  • Kaanapali Beach Hotel - 4 night Best of the Beach package just $1385
  • $555+ Hawaii Vacations: 3 Nights with Air & FREE midsize rental or roundtrip transfers
  • Volcano Value Rates at Royal Kona Resort from $129
  • Hilton Hawaii Deals - starting at just $169