Kauai Travel Guide | Things to do, places to eat, sights to see

This post is coming a little later than I would have liked for it to, but better late than never am I right?

About a month ago, my best friend and I visited Kauai! I had never been to any of the Hawaiian Islands before this trip, but after seeing how beautiful Kauai was I definitely want to venture out and see some of the other amazing destinations the islands have to offer. 

CLICK HERE to watch the full Instagram story highlight of our trip! 

Many of you followed our trip on Instagram and I got a lot of questions about the things we did, places we ate, etc., so I figured I would write a full guide with all the details of the trip. We were there for six days total and I feel like it was exactly the right amount of time to squeeze in everything we wanted to do. We stayed in Princeville on the North shore, but ventured out quite a bit to explore the whole island.


1. Rent a jeep and drive around with the top down 

Seriously, if you rent a car it's 100% worth the upgrade to a Jeep Wrangler with a removable top. Everything on Kauai is fairly spread out and it takes a pretty big chunk of time to drive from place to place, but we didn't mind because the drive itself was a blast! Everything is so scenic, the temperature is perfect, and the wind blowing through your hair while you drive through the trees and by the ocean can't be beat. 

2. Sight see at 'Opaeka'a Falls

'Opaeka'a Falls is a gorgeous waterfall in the Wailua River State Park. A lot of the falls in Kauai take a bit of a hike to get to, but you can drive right up to the view of 'Opaeka'a Falls, making it perfect for a quick sight seeing venture and photo op. 

3. Hike the Awa'awapuhi trail

This may have been my FAVORITE thing we did the whole trip.the Awa'awapuhi trail is on the west side of Waimea Canyon and is 3.2 miles each way (totaling a near 6.5 mile hike by the end). One thing that's SUPER important if you're planning on doing this hike: go in the morning. Once the clouds start to settle over the mountains, you can't see the incredible view at the end. We started the hike around 9:30 in the morning and got to the end around 11:30, and our timing couldn't have been better. The hike is almost all downhill on the way there, which means it's all uphill on the way back. It can get pretty muddy if it rains, so make sure you have solid and sturdy shoes to navigate the trail. I wore a pair of Skechers Reggae Sandals and they were perfect. The hike to the end is super scenic, with various stops along the way with incredible views. Nothing beats the end of the trail, though, when you reach the cliff overlooking the Na Pali Coast and the sky and ocean seem to blend together. Truly one of the best views I have ever seen!

4. Look out over Waimea Canyon

We got a stunning view of Waimea Canyon on our way up to the Awa'awapuhi trail head. The canyon is 10 miles long and 3,000 feet deep, complete with beautiful rock formations and even a few waterfalls. Definitely recommend driving through if you visit the west side of the island.