The last stop on our Hawaii Cruise was Kauai. We spent one full day in Kauai and then most of second day before we departed to take in the Napali coast at sunset. Kauai is a lush island with lots of greenery. I was surprised at the amount of traffic that we encountered on the island and in fact encountered more traffic than any other island which is surprising considering its population and its nickname the Garden Isle. However, more and more tourists are discovering this beautiful island so make sure to take advantage of this gem before it changes.
The first day we took a full day tour to explore the green island. First we stopped at Opaekaa falls. This stunning waterfall is a must-see for any traveler who wants to experience the full beauty of the Hawaiian Islands. It was easily accessible and is a great spot for taking pictures and admiring the lush greenery of the area. The waterfall cascades down a rocky cliff and into a pool below, and the surrounding foliage creates a truly breathtaking scene. While it was busy, there was plenty of space to spread out and get a great view of the falls.
Next, we visited the Spouting Horn Blowhole near the beach town of Poipu. Located on the south shore of Kauai, this natural wonder is an awe-inspiring sight to behold. As the waves push the water up and through a lava tube, the water is forced out with a loud roar and a magnificent spray. The unique sound of the blowhole is said to come from the ancient Hawaiian goddess Kaikapu who is believed to live in the lava tube and make the sound when she is angry.
In the afternoon we explored the Waimea Canyon, known as the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific,” which is an incredible sight to behold! It stretches for 10 miles, with a depth of up to 3,000 feet. The red and orange hues of Waimea Canyon made it stand out against all the greenery on the rest of the island. We were unable to visit some parts of the canyon because it was closed but the places we did stop at, allowed us some of the most dramatic backdrops of our entire trip.
In the evening we were dropped off at the historic Kilohan for the Luau Kalamaku! It was an unforgettable evening of Hawaiian culture, music, and food. You could even watch the imu ceremony where they unearthed the pig from the underground oven. From the traditional Samoan fire-knife dance to traditional hula dancing, we were immersed in the spirit of aloha.
Our second day in Kauai we were so tired from our full day tour and luau and our constant exploration of the other islands previously that we slept in and relaxed in the morning. In the afternoon when the ship sailed along the Napali coast, we got a prime viewing location to see the jaw dropping shoreline. It was beautiful but since we were on such a large vessel, we were unable to get close to the shore. Binoculars really helped us to see the detail in the coastline. Next time we visit, I would love to do a small boat tour in order to get much closer to the coastline and maybe even relax on a secluded beach.
As the oldest of the Hawaiian Islands, Kauai is slowly sinking into the ocean as the island subsides and erodes. The highest peak of Kauai is only about 1/3 the height of the Island of Hawaii. The island is so green because it receives the most rain of any of the Hawaiian Islands and Mount Waialeale is in fact one of the rainiest spots on Earth. Make sure to visit this gem of an island with all its unique features.