Pick an Island

Places on Kauai

The Garden Isle might be small but there are plenty of places to visit on Kauai. Every neighborhood has something special to unveil and spending time in each of the unique towns gives you an opportunity to see and learn something different.

Kauai is divided into four separate regions – North Shore, Eastside, South Shore and Westside. These areas are host to exclusive features including geography that make them all worth checking out.

Kauai’s North Shore

On the more verdant North Shore are three must-see towns – Hanalei, Princeville and Kilauea; each only about 20 minutes away from one another. Hanalei, which is the location of the famous Hanalei Bay Beach, is a picturesque small town that nestles against the mighty Namolokama Mountain. Princeville is largely known as the location for timeshares and vacation rentals, as well as one of the largest hotels on the island (St. Regis) where mai tais and champagne can be enjoyed with an exquisite view. Kilauea is what a great majority of North Shore residents call home and also boasts the Historic Kong Lung Market Center and the best place to view native seabirds at the Kilauea Lighthouse and Wildlife Refuge.

Kauai’s Eastside

The Eastside of the island is where most of the island’s population resides. Kapaa and Lihue are some of the best places to visit on Kauai for swimmable beaches including Kealia and Kalapaki. These two towns also have plenty of walkable areas to traverse and opportunities to shop and dine.

Kauai’s South Shore

The places to see on Kauai don’t stop there – the South Shore offers something entirely different and it’s almost always sunny there. This also is where you will find one of the newest shopping centers on the island, The Shops at Kukuiula, with a variety of local keepsakes as well as international eateries. Poipu is a great place to stop for a swim or relax beachside, or maybe have a picnic on the grounds of the National Tropical Botanical Garden.

Kauai’s Westside

One of the most talked about places to visit on Kauai, however, is located on the Westside in Waimea. Kokee State Park and Waimea Canyon are worth the drive with vistas that rival some of the most beautiful in the world. Kauai’s Biggest Little Town, the artistic Hanapepe, also located on the Westside near Waimea, comes alive every Friday during its Art Night with food and fun for everyone.

drive around Kauai

Kilauea Point Wildlife Refuge. Photo: Carlton C., Hawaii.com Member.

Enter to win a trip to the Hawaii Food & Wine Festival