Kauai Off The Beaten Path

  • Off The Beaten Path
    by kellinwood
  • The original St. Raphael’s Church.
    The original St. Raphael’s Church.
    by Etoile2B
  • The cemetery at St. Raphael’s.
    The cemetery at St. Raphael’s.
    by Etoile2B

Kauai Off The Beaten Path

  • Kalalau Trail

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    The odd thing about me putting this tip in this category is that THIS IS a beaten path! :) It’s just one that leads you away from all the other beaten paths on the island. The Kalalau Trail runs most of the length of Nâ Pali Coast on the rugged north shore of Kaua‘i. Starting at Ke‘e (kay-ay) Beach and terminating at Kalalau Beach, it is eleven...

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  • Menehune Ditch

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Although this site is not well developed and is seldom visited by tourists, I found it absolutely fascinating. The Menehune Ditch is an aqueduct of cut and dressed stones that was once used to bring irrigation water from the Waimea River to the taro fields. Only 50 or 60 feet of it are now visible, including a section of tunnel. The rocks for...

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  • Polihale State Park Beach

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Polihale state beach is literally at the western end of the island. It’s literally the end of the road, out past the Pacific Missile Range Facility. This beach is extremely remote and difficult to reach. Four wheel drive vehicles are recommended but not required for the drive out to the beach as the last six miles is a rough, unpaved, potholed dirt...

    more
  • Blue Room (Cave)

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    The Blue Room is documented in all the travel guides, but its really something off the beaten path. It's located at the end of the road on Kauai’s North Shore. I heard some other visitors comparing it to the Blue Grotto in Capri in Italy. Apparanetly, there is a daily show at the Grotto. The Blue Room is very quiet and serene, except for the...

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  • Kipu Falls

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Go to Kipu Falls - a freshwater Waterfall on "private" land at the end of Kipu Road. Even though it's private land, both locals and tourists visit. On one side of the pond there is a 25 ft cliff with a rope swing that you can jump from. (It's in the Blue Kauai guidebook that everyone has...Kauai Revealed. If you swing, make sure to RELEASE on...

    more
  • Pu'u O Kila Lookout

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Please don't turn back towards the shore once you leave Waimea Canyon!!!! You'll miss one of the most amazing views of the Kalalau Valley and the Na Pali cliffs. If you continue on Hwy 550 past the canyon lookout and go as far as you can, you'll reach the Pu'u O Kila Lookout. The views from here are breathtaking. Kalaulau Beach and Valley can only...

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  • Maniniholo Dry Cave

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    If you take a drive along the north coast past Hanalei, you will see the Maniniholo Dry Cve, across the street from the Haena Beach State Park. The cave cuts several hundred yards into the base of a vertical cliff. The high roof at the entrance of the cvern gets progressively lowe as you want to the rear of the cave. There are spooky recesses and...

    more
  • Hawaiian Hardwoods

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    We're just driving along trying to get to the north shore to Tunnel's beach and we see this sign that read's "Hawaiian Hardwoods". My boyfriend, who is driving, makes a quick u-turn and we look down this dirt road. He wants to know what the Hawaiian Hardwoods are all about. We drive slowly and carefully down the dirt road, passing one house after...

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  • Tradewinds Bar & Grill

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    This is located in the Coconut Marketplace in Kapa'a. They serve lunch during the day and it's a fun bar to hang out in at night, and one of the few in the area. There are several hotels around, so it's good entertainment for when everything's closed. There's karaoke, dancing, darts, and very strong Mai Tais :) Even though it's surrounded by...

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  • NaPali Coast

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    The Na Pali Coast is a remote stretch of magical coastland along the western side of Kauai. Much of this area is unreachable due to the sheer cliffs that cascade into the Pacific Ocean below. There aren’t any roads here so to experience the majesty of the Na Pali Coast one must hike in on foot or cruise in via boat. Great views of the Na Pali Coast...

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  • Hanapepe

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Every Friday is Art Night in Hanapepe, the "historic" town on Kaua'i's south shore. Formerly a sugar cane town, Hanapepe has reinvented itself as an artist colony and it seems that over half of the buildings on its small downtown strip are galleries. You can wander the galleries by day but every Friday from 6:00-9:00 p.m. the galleries stay open...

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  • Moloa'a Beach

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Moloa'a Bay, was the location for the pilot episode of Gilligan's Island. For anyone who's early years were spent watching this sitcom, you might just find it of interest. It's also a very nice beach, located between Kilauea and Anahola, down Koolau Road, it's easy to miss the tiny street sign if your not careful. (Tip from: The Ultimate Kauai...

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  • Wailua Falls

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Just about everyone who goes to Kaua`i manages to drive up "mauka" to see Wailua Falls. It's one of the easiest waterfalls on the island to see, albeit you only get to experience its beauty from a distance. So why is this tip in the "Off the Beaten Path" section? Because an adventure awaits at this spot. If you've read the "Revealed" guidebook,...

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  • Ultralight Adventures

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    This has to be the most amazing thing I've done while on the islands! You get to fly as high as a bird with a view unhindered by windows. You will feel the rush of air on your face with a view limited only by how far you can turn your head. And, every which way you turn, you are greeted with a view that will leave you panting in anticipation for...

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  • Waimea Canyon

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Just outside of Waimea on Kaua'i's south shore are the ruins of an old Russian fort. While this place doesn't attract many tourists and there's not really much to see except lots of lava rocks laid out in a star pattern, the grounds would have a fascinating story to tell if they could only talk. In 1810, the king of Kaua'i, Kaumualii, consented to...

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  • St Rafael's Catholic Church

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    If you take a little drive down a dirt road about a mile from Koloa Towns shoppng center, you will come upon a quaint whitewashed church. This small structure is St Rafael's Catholic church, the oldest catholic church on the island. Father Arsenius RoberT Walsh named the church in honor of the Archangel, Raphael. Though the first mass was said on...

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  • Kalihiwai Beach

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Kalihiwai Beach on the north shore, between Kilauea and Princeville, is an undiscovered-by-tourists local beach. The beach in summer is generally calm, and in the winter (or if you are traveling with small children) there is a small river emptying into the ocean that you can swim in. There are lots of trees for shade and plenty of wide open beach...

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  • Highway 56

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    As you drive Highway 56 to the Northside of the Island, don't miss all the little stuff on the side of the road that most would just keep driving by. Waterfalls abound. In a couple of areas, there are caves you can explore that are visible from the road. Take the time to stop and see what you are missing.

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  • National Tropical Botanical Garden

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    If you're interested in tropical plants and -- especially -- native Hawaiian plants, then a visit to the National Tropical Botanical Garden is a must. But, even if your interest doesn't run too high into botany, a visit to the Gardens is worth the price because of the excellent docent, who gives you a fine dose of regional history and Kauai...

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  • Kayaking

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    If you don't see any chickens or hear any roosters, you are of the beaten track. You will find these animals every where. On the beach, up the canyon everywhere were there are tourists. We went kayaking and after that we walked for over an hour to the secret waterfall to see dozens of chickens.

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  • Anini Beach

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Beaches like this are not supposed to exist, right? Only in tourist brochures? :) 'Anini Beach features a large, sweetest blue lagoon protected by fringing reefs that block the North Shore surf. The beach is narrow, but with clean beige sand and lined with hau trees that provide shades. Behind the beach, there's ample lawn and picnic area with...

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  • Spouting Horn

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    This is a blow hole called Spouting Horn. The old hawaiian story says that a brave warrior trapped a giant lizard in the lava rocks and to this day you can hear it moan and then spout off. The lava rock has some holes in it and the ocean flows in an out creating a loud suction sound and then a blowout. South near Poipu beach

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  • Hanakapiai Falls

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Hanakapiai Falls-travel time: 1 hour, 30 minutes, distance: 2 miles (one way). Trail begins a Hanakapiai beach and is a very rough trail.Elevation gain/loss 800 feet.At Hanakapiai beach I recommend refilling your water bottle before heading up to the falls. At the falls, reload your water bottle again before heading back to the beach.

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  • Salt Pond Beach Park

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    For many many years the Hawai'ians have used Pa 'akai (salt from the seas) to flavor their foods. Today the tradition of salt drying is handed down through the Kau'ai generations. The art is slowly dying out but there are still some who cultivate this savory seasoning and make it available for purchase in the local markets. The Sea Salt is produced...

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  • Hanalei Valley

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Stop at the Hanalei Valley Overlook and seeone of the classis vistas in Hawaii. The belongs to the Hanalei National Wldlife Refuge. As a protected wildlife refuge the land has reverted to the taro cultivation of ancient times.

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  • Opaeka'a Falls

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    After visiting Opaeka'a Falls, we decided to drive along this road north of the falls. It was beautiful with many displays of tree canopies shading the road. These types of drives are typical throughout the island. We actually passed a couple of housing areas that had to be for the multi-gazillionaire. The location was like heaven.

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  • Haena Beach Park

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    the realy cool people live on Kauais north coast. You can camp on Haena Beach Park. a cool place to go... with great waves... yes, everybody was lol when I flew backwards out of my flip flops spotting the big wave approaching through my camera... never forger: HANG LOOSE

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  • Biplane Tours

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    We went on a biplane tour of the island. It was fabulous! If you are very prone to motion-sickness, it could be difficult for you. We were on the 'patch', but Amy still felt wicked sick, Susan felt fine. You really get to see it ALL from a biplane - great pilot, great time.

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  • Alaka'i Swamp Trail

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    This trail traverses the northern edge of the unique upland-wetland ecosystem of the Alaka'i Swamp in the heart of Kaua'i. The swamp is held by thick, erosion-resistant layers of lava called the Olokele formation, and nourished by the greatest amount of rain that falls on this planet. Cool temperatures keep invasive species and disease-bearing...

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  • Ni'ihau

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    If you drive along the coast...either northeast to Princeville or west and northwest to the beginning of the Na P'ali coast, there are endless beautiful sights to explore on Kaua'i. Here I am on the way to the northwest coast with Ni'ihau island in the background. This small and relatively unknown island is home to people who are 100% Hawaiian. No...

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  • Hanalei Bay

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    There's a whole lot more to Kauai than sun, sand, and surf ... but given the sheer beauty and diversity of the beaches and beach parks you'll find on Kauai, you'll have every excuse if you decide to spend all your waking hours exploring them. Some are perfect for strolling, others for swimming, beachcombing, or picnicking Famous for its...

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  • Nâ Pali Coast

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Nâ Pali Coast is one of the most breath-taking sites on Kaua‘i. Whether you hike the Kalalau Trail to be on it, view it from a helicopter tour, or see it from boat, you'll certainly be mesmerized by the dark green, lush, spiring peaks jutting from the deep blue ocean and sprinkled with a few small, isolated, white-sand beaches below them. It seems...

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  • Pu'u Wanawana

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    An intriguing aspect of the life of a Hawaiian volcanic island is that it can come back to life long after the principal shield volcano has ceased activity and erosion has deeply cut into the flanks of the mountain. Called post-erosional or rejuvenation stage volcanism, on Oahu it was responsible for such well-known landmarks as Diamond Head,...

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  • Lahu'e Grove Farm Land

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Learn all about Hawaii's plantation history on this 80 acre preserved plantation. Must book your tour in advance. Tours are on Monday, Wednesday and Thursdays. Don't forget to sample their AMAZING Hawaiian sugar cookies.

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  • Hanalei Bridge

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    On the road to Hanalei a hairpin turn offers another scenic look at Hanalei town; then you cross the Hanalei Bridge. The Pratt truss steel bridge, pre-fabbed in New York City, was erected in 1912; it's now on the National Registry of Historic Landmarks. If it ever goes out, the nature of Hanalei will change forever; currently, this rusty, one-lane...

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  • Kukui O Lono Park and Golf Course

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    Kukui O Lono is a hilltop park and public golf course on the south side of the town of Kalaheo on Route 50. The hill is actually a small shield volcano of the Koloa series, and there is a remnant crater in the park, which now contains a grove of trees and a small Japanese garden. There is also a corner of the park where some archaeological stone...

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  • Kauai Coastline

    Kauai Off The Beaten Path

    I thought this was a great shot. I was driving to Princeville from Lihue when I saw this on the southeast coast. This is the steep coastline leading to Kilauea Lighthouse in the background. Unfortuneately, I couldn't get any closer in 2001. But, the shot turned out really nice. Check my other pages for more in depth info & photos of Kilauea...

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  • Na Pali Coast

    The Na Pali Coast is a remote stretch of magical coastland along the western side of Kauai. Much of this area is unreachable due to the sheer cliffs that cascade into the Pacific Ocean below. There aren’t any roads here so to experience the majesty of the Na Pali Coast one must hike in on foot or cruise in via boat. Great views of the Na Pali Coast...

    more
  • End of the Road Paradise

    Polihale state beach is literally at the western end of the island. It’s literally the end of the road, out past the Pacific Missile Range Facility. This beach is extremely remote and difficult to reach. Four wheel drive vehicles are recommended but not required for the drive out to the beach as the last six miles is a rough, unpaved, potholed dirt...

    more
  • Rope Swing of a 25 ft cliff!

    Go to Kipu Falls - a freshwater Waterfall on "private" land at the end of Kipu Road. Even though it's private land, both locals and tourists visit. On one side of the pond there is a 25 ft cliff with a rope swing that you can jump from. (It's in the Blue Kauai guidebook that everyone has...Kauai Revealed. If you swing, make sure to RELEASE on time...

    more
  • Maniniholo Dry Cave

    If you take a drive along the north coast past Hanalei, you will see the Maniniholo Dry Cve, across the street from the Haena Beach State Park. The cave cuts several hundred yards into the base of a vertical cliff. The high roof at the entrance of the cvern gets progressively lowe as you want to the rear of the cave. There are spooky recesses and...

    more
  • Fly Like a Bird — Almost!

    This has to be the most amazing thing I've done while on the islands! You get to fly as high as a bird with a view unhindered by windows. You will feel the rush of air on your face with a view limited only by how far you can turn your head. And, every which way you turn, you are greeted with a view that will leave you panting in anticipation for...

    more
  • Visit Gilligan's Island

    Moloa'a Bay, was the location for the pilot episode of Gilligan's Island.For anyone who's early years were spent watching this sitcom, you might just find it of interest.It's also a very nice beach, located between Kilauea and Anahola, down Koolau Road, it's easy to miss the tiny street sign if your not careful.(Tip from: The Ultimate Kauai...

    more
  • Ha! Ha! This is really off the Beaten...

    We're just driving along trying to get to the north shore to Tunnel's beach and we see this sign that read's "Hawaiian Hardwoods". My boyfriend, who is driving, makes a quick u-turn and we look down this dirt road. He wants to know what the Hawaiian Hardwoods are all about. We drive slowly and carefully down the dirt road, passing one house after...

    more
  • Polihale State Park

    It is vast. It is an amazing long beach the most western part of the island you could get to along the coast. Very deserted, it looks like a bit end of the world or something. To get there 4WD is recommended because the road becomes dirt road but it’s also fun to drive bumpy roads! It is an open sea so you need to be careful for a strong currency,...

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Kauai Off The Beaten Path

Reviews and photos of Kauai off the beaten path posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Kauai sightseeing.
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