Things to do in kauai
Explore the island’s natural beauty, breathtaking sights and annual events
Few places on earth are blessed with as much unspoiled natural beauty as Kauai – home to stunning beaches, majestic mountains, and cascading waterfalls. Tucked along the island’s gorgeous western shore, Waimea Plantation Cottages offers a peaceful home base from which to explore all that the Garden Isle has to offer.
Check out Waimea Canyon, one of Kauai’s most iconic natural landmarks, or tour the Kauai Coffee Estate.
Tee off from a local golf course, cruise along the water on a catamaran excursion and soar over the Na Pali cliffs in a helicopter. Interested in a little retail therapy? The Shops at Kukui'ula are just a short drive away. A full calendar of events, including farmers markets, athletic competitions, festivals and cultural celebrations, ensures you’ll never be bored.
If you’d like additional advice on things to do, see and experience in Kauai, please don’t hesitate to ask us.
Kauai Activity Desk
Distance from Hotel: less than a mile
We’ve curated our top choices to Catch the Best of Kaua’i with companies we know and trust to provide an excellent experience!
Waimea Canyon and Koke'e State Park
Distance from Hotel: entrance less than a mile
The "Grand Canyon of the Pacific" features plenty of scenic lookout points via Koke'e Road; stop and gaze at the red cliffs and verdant vegetation.
Perfect your swing on the golf courses of Kauai - home to some of the very best holes in the world, framed by amazing scenery.
Swinging Bridge, Hanapepe
Distance from Hotel: 7 Miles
First built over 100 years ago (and rebuilt in the 90s), the Swinging Bridge is suspended over the pipe suppling water to Hanapepe Town.
Distance from Hotel: 9 Miles
Tour the plantation and sip a cup of perfectly brewed Kauai coffee.
Distance from Hotel: 55 Miles
The largest bay on the North Shore, Hanalei Bay features almost two miles of beach, flanked by mountains.
Poipu Beach Park
Distance from Hotel: 23 Miles
One of Kauai's best-known beaches, Poipu Beach Park is divided into two sections; one side is perfect for kids and the other is great for swimming, snorkeling and surfing.
Lihue Town & Kalapaki Beach
Distance from Hotel: 24 Miles
There are plenty of shopping and dining possibilities in Lihue Town; Kalapaki Beach offers opportunities to surf, boogie board and paddle board.
Distance from Hotel: 28 Miles
Located at the south end of the Wailua River, Wailua Falls is a stunning 80-foot waterfall that divides into two streams.
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Annual Robbie Burns Supper
Located right here at Waimea Plantation Cottages, this event celebrates the birthday of Robert Burns, the acclaimed Scottish poet.
Kilohana Long-Distance Canoe Race
Catch a glimpse of traditional Outrigger canoes going head to head in this annual race, which is part of the Waimea Town Celebration.
Kauai Bon Dance Festival
One of the most anticipated events of the summer, Kauai Bon Dance occurs over nine weeks at different locations throughout the island.
Kauai Orchid and Art Festival
Tropical orchids take center stage at this Festival, which is held every March and features great music, food, a silent auction and even painting workshops.
Hale Puna Farmers Market
This Market takes place under the old monkeypod tree at the historic Hale Puna House (formerly known as the Gulick-Rowell House) near the Kauaʻi Veterans Memorial Hospital. Street parking available.
Kauai Chocolate & Coffee Festival
Celebrate chocolate and coffee at this unforgettable festival! From samples to workshops, displays and entertainment, there's plenty here to satisfy your cravings.
Koloa Plantation Days Family Fun Run/Walk
Enjoy the beauty of Kauai's South Shore as you race one of four different courses, geared toward different skill and experience levels.
Annual Kauai Hospice Concert in the Sky
Commemorate July 4th at Lihue’s Vidinha Stadium with family fun, great food, live entertainment and fireworks.
Eo E Emalani I Alakai Festival
Paying homage to Queen Emma's life and accomplishments, this event features Hawaiian music, dancing and chants.
King Kamehameha Celebration Hoolaulea
The King Kamehameha Celebration Hoolaulea takes place in June, and is part of a week-long celebration of Hawaii's first ruler.
Waimea Lighted Christmas Parade
2020-12-05 00:00:00 : 5:30pm - 7:00pm
Kick off the festive season at this fun parade, where you'll see colorful floats make their way down the center of town.
Waimea Cherry Blossom Heritage Festival
2021-02-06 00:00:00 : 9:00am - 3:00pm
Head to Church Row Park to witness the annual blooming of its cherry trees, a Japanese tradition.
Heiva I Kauai
2021-07-31 00:00:00 - 2021-08-01 00:00:00 : 10:00am - 5:00pm
This annual event provides a venue for performers of all ages to present talent, skill and cultural knowledge to an audience of more than 1,000 attendees daily.
Your local guide
How to Travel on a Budget
If you frequently daydream of boarding a plane for far-flung destinations but don't have the salary of a CEO, you may think that a vacation is simply out of the question. However, traveling doesn't have to cost a fortune and in fact, planning an incredible trip that's also affordable is easy with a bit of planning, flexibility and open-mindedness.