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Region of Kauai Island


Region of Kauai Island
Cities/Town :
Region : Kauai Island
State : Hawaii
Country : United States
Continent : North America
Population : 65,689
Area : 1,456 sq km
Latitude : 22°05′N
Longitude : 159°30′W
Visiting Kauai Island


Kauai is the northwestern most of Hawaii's major islands. Nicknamed the Garden Island, it is covered with lush greenery and tropical plants, watered regularly by abundant rainfall. As the oldest of the islands, it has been changed the most by the forces of erosion, and this has resulted in natural wonders such as Waimea Canyon and the Na Pali Coast. As a consequence of its age, Kauai also has more miles of sandy coastline than the other Hawaiian islands.

The major regions of Kaua`i can be defined by their location on the island relative to the prevailing trade winds. The north and east sides of the island are on the "windward" side of the island, where the winds blow onto the shore. These parts of the island tend to get the most rain, and as a result, are the greenest and most tropical parts of the island. The south and west sides of the island are on the "leeward" side of the island, which receive less rain since most clouds have already dropped their rain on the windward side of the island.


  • Kapa`a, on the east side, about a 20 minute drive north of Lihu`e, is the largest population center on the island. It anchors what is known as the Coconut Coast, which hosts many inexpensive to moderately priced resorts and much commercial activity with many strip malls along the highway. The corridor between Lihu`e and Kapa`a is the island's most congested.
  • Lihu`e, on the island's southeast side, is the civic and commercial center of the island, host to the island's main airport, county offices, and largest shopping mall (Kukui Grove Center). The Kaua`i Museum [2], located in the old part of Lihu`e and is the island's best museum on the history, geography, and people of Kaua`i.
  • Po`ipu, on the south side, branded "the sunny side of paradise", is the major visitor destination for the island. Poipu features beautiful beaches, swimming, snorkeling and surfing, sea turtles, whales, monk seals, trade winds, palm trees, and spectacular sunsets. The Allerton and McBryde National Tropical Botanical Gardens of the Pacific are located in Poipu. The Grand Hyatt Kauai, Marriott's Waiohai Beach Club and Coastline Cottages Kauai lead the area's accommodation choices.
  • Princeville is a planned resort community on the north shore, consisting of homes, condo developments, the St. Regis hotel, and 2 golf courses. Kauai's impressive north shore mountains form the backdrop. Several small beaches are located within Princeville, with many more a short drive away.
  • Waimea, on the west side, is a small town with a flavor of old Kaua`i. Most visitors pass through town on the way to Waimea Canyon and Koke`e, but the town itself is worth a relaxing visit.


  • Hanalei, on the north shore, is home to a quaint little beach town and famous Hanalei Bay, a crescent shaped bay known for its sandy white beaches and world class surf. The center of town provides a young, relaxed vibe perfect for the young traveler. The burger joint in the center of town provides amazing views of one of Kauai's biggest mountains with a visible waterfall in the center.
  • Haena, lies just beyond Hanalei. It is mostly made up of residential homes, but is also is the gateway to Na Pali Coast and the location of Limahuli Valley, another National Tropical Botanical Garden of the Pacific.
  • Hanapepe on the south shore has a quaint downtown filled with artists' galleries and craft shops. There is also a swinging footbridge over the Hanapepe River. Be sure to check out the Banana Patch Studio for wonderful hand painted tiles and other locally made items.
  • Kilauea is a small village that most people pass on the way to the Kilauea Lighthouse. The Kong Lung Center offers a few unique stores and restaurants. There is also a large fruit stand, Banana Joe's, located north of Kilauea on the mountain side of the highway.
  • Lumahai Beach is a very-well photographed beach but is only accessible by a short hike through a tropical path. Located between Hanalei and Haena beaches, this secluded beach is perfect for people who want a more private experience. There are lava formations and caves to explore and low wake perfect for snorkeling. For the more adventurous traveler, there is the opportunity to cliff jump into the ocean from one of the protruding lava rock formations. Lumahai beach is a place many locals go so it gives tourists to see the special opportunity of the "real" Hawaii. However, visitors should note that Lumahai Beach is notorious for extremely strong rip currents, undertows and other hazards. The beach has been the site of multiple drownings and is almost always highly dangerous for swimming.

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