Kauai is an island known for its incredible Na Pali coastline and its magnificent views have served as a backdrop for major Hollywood films. In addition, it is blessed with incredible waterfalls and beaches. It guarantees to keep you enchanted with its mountains, pristine beaches, and dramatic skies. In this blog post, I am going to help you determine where to stay on Kauai for you depending on what activities and style of vacation you have in mind. I’ll also make suggestions in each of those areas on what are in my opinion, the best places to stay on Kauai.
WHERE TO STAY ON KAUAI: WHICH REGION IS BEST FOR YOU
There are a lot of important factors to help you get the most out of your stay on Kauai. For example, on the North Shore, you can have a picturesque view of the scenery and drive directly to its popular resorts and beaches. In the beautiful South Shore of Kauai, you can drive through its tunnel of trees, be close to the township and feel its warmth. The biggest attractions here are the perfect beaches. Kauai’s West Side is popular for the groves of coconut palms that grow in its resort areas and the unbelievable hiking. I hope this blog will help you choose where to stay on Kauai.
This checklist should get you started with which is the best area to stay on Kauai for you!
- North Shore: Quiet, low-key, surf area, several hikes, laid back
- South Shore: Beaches, nearby the town with restaurants, cafes, galleries and tours, coastal walks
- East Side: Hiking, Beaches, Nature lovers, Adventure
QUICK PICKS: 3 BEST PLACES TO STAY ON KAUAI
Don’t have time to read my detailed breakdown of all the best places to stay in Kauai? No worries! These are my three top picks for where to stay in Kauai. If you book one of these three, you are guaranteed to have a great stay in a great location!
WHERE TO STAY ON KAUAI, HAWAII
Here is my comprehensive breakdown of the best places to stay in Kauai. The article is broken down region by region to make it easy to follow.
AREA: North Coast (Princeville)
North Shore Kauai offers all kinds of things to do from a casual and relaxed vibe and family-friendly hikes on the North Shore. Aside from hiking, among the popular activities here are kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, snorkeling, and many more.
Princeville Resort (Luxury): Situated on the North Coast of the island, the resort provides everything there is to offer including a massive outdoor swimming pool with a bar. Guests can also enjoy modern facilities and spacious guestrooms.
Not to mention the wonderful views of the sunrise and sunset! Fresh local seafood of many kinds is offered. You can also indulge in a variety of fun activities, including horseback riding, sailing, and helicopter tours.
WYNDHAM KA ‘EO KAI
Wyndham Ka ‘Eo Kai: An affordable, luxurious getaway.
One of our top picks in Princeville. The Wyndham Ka ‘Eo Kai is just 2 miles from Hanalei Beach Park. It features an outdoor pool, a hot tub, tennis courts, and an on-site business center. Guest suites offer free WiFi and fully equipped kitchens. The best part about the Wyndham is that it is just a really relaxing atmosphere. Whether by the hot tub with other guests, in the pool, or around the grounds which are incredibly green and natural.
Guests at Wyndham Ka ‘Eo Kai can relax by the pool or enjoy the resort’s on-site massage treatments. A fitness center is available. Princeville Center and Princeville Golf Course are less than 1.2 miles away.
THE CLIFFS AT PRINCEVILLE
The Cliffs at Princeville (Luxury): Located on the North Shore of Kauai, this resort features 2 stunning swimming pools, a children’s pool area, and 2 hot tubs. In each room, you will find a full kitchen and it really has a homely feel.
The Princeville Golf Course is just 1.6 km away and provides some incredible views. Guests of The Cliffs have access to 2 tennis courts, a half-court basketball court, a pickleball court, 2 shuffleboard courts, and a children’s playground
AREA: South Coast (Poipu)
Poipu is on the Southern side of the island. It is best known for having the best beaches in the world. It has turquoise waters all over the place. It has become a perfect destination for families, with its palm trees swaying and fresh calm breeze.
The number one recommendation I can make is Koloa Landing. It is home to the largest swimming pool on the island, which is landscaped in a natural lagoon style. It’s right on the beach and this luxury resort is just incredible. I was lucky enough to stay here for three nights and just never wanted to leave!
KOLOA LANDING RESORT AT PO’IPU, AUTOGRAPH COLLECTION
I spent three days at this incredible resort and it was literally a dream vacation! The pool is multi-tiered but all connected with a lagoon structure. At night as the sun sets and everyone is hanging out in the pool and hot tubs it is just an incredible atmosphere.
KOA KEA HOTEL & RESORT
Koa Kea Hotel & Resort: Nestled on the South Shore, this boutique resort offers luxurious and spacious guest rooms with a balcony. Some of its rooms provide a private veranda with stunning views of the mountains and ocean. The restaurant serves fresh Hawaiian local seafood which makes your mouth water. It has a poolside bar and a spa is also available in the area.
SHERATON KAUAI RESORT
Sheraton Kauai Resort (Family Pick): Located on Kauai’s southern shoreline, Sheraton Kauai Resort offers huge outdoor swimming pools. It has sightseeing attractions and an array of nearby activities. You can explore and enjoy dining at Sheraton Kauai Resort, with spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean and Poipu Beach. This is a perfect place for couples and families.
Whaler’s Cove: Whaler’s Cove features a heated outdoor pool and a full kitchen in each luxurious room. It is accessible to the shops and a gourmet farmers market in Kukuiula Village. Showcasing ocean views, the apartments at Whalers Cove offers Free Wi-Fi and a flat-screen TV with cable. You can relax on their oceanfront view balcony. Guests have rated this as one of the best value hotels.
GRAND HYATT KAUAI RESORT & SPA
Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa: Set amidst the tropical gardens, the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa has a golf course, 7 restaurants, and a spa. Each guest room includes a private balcony. Guests may dine at seven different restaurants including top-quality seafood cuisine. The Luau Show on Wednesdays and Sundays offer a Hawaiian buffet and showcases traditional Polynesian dance and culture.
AREA: East Coast (Wailua)
The East coast is the best central spot to stay. You have waterfalls, hikes, and beaches all within short drives. It allows you to drive south or north within 30-minutes rather than isolating yourself at the top or bottom of the island.
FERN GROTTO INN
Fern Grotto Inn (Unique): Located in the town of Kappa, this inn prides itself on its unique vintage-style plantation cottages with modern amenities. Guests can relax in their private gardens. It is only a few steps away from the popular beaches of the town and accessible to the shopping centers. The owner makes sure you feel at home that is why it is ranked as one of the best inns in the town.
THE SECRET GARDEN ROOM
The Secret Garden Room (Tranquility): The Secret Garden Room is a homestay located just 15 minutes from the airport. It features a fish pond and a man-made waterfall just outside the rooms. The staff welcomes guests with a basket of food items. A botanical garden is available, where you can unwind and take a walk while enjoying the incredible view around. You can hear nature’s sounds and smell the fragrance of flowers from your bed.
I hope you are no longer wondering where to stay on Kauai. I wish you the best for your vacation and hope you enjoyed this guide to the best places to stay on Kauai.
HOLD UP! Are you sure you’re ready to start hiking and traveling? GET INSURED FIRST!
If you can’t afford travel insurance, you can’t afford to travel. Don’t wait for an accident to happen, Get insured. I fractured an ankle halfway through a multi-day trek and had THOUSANDS covered by through insurance claim.
I’ve been using World Nomads and SafetyWing for the past 6 years. I’ve made successful claims with both and found them professional, helpful, and reliable but most importantly.. cheap! I trust them both. World Nomads is great for travel up to two months and SafetyWing is perfect for long-term travel.
To find out why I choose World Nomads and SafetyWing, check out my review: Best (Cheap) Travel Insurance or get a quote below.
What are my favorite pieces of travel gear?
There are four pieces of gear that I simply never travel without. These are four items that I using right now and this list gets updated every year! Here are my travel essentials.
- Packing Cube Set: Once you cube you’ll never go back. Organize your clothes within your luggage with these smart mesh containers. It will revolutionize your packing.
- PackTowl Quick-Dry Towel: A quick-dry towel is a must for travelers. It hardly takes up any room and dries in seconds.
- Travel Wallet: Keep your passport, wallet, and vaccine card safe as well as any forms and important documents you need to store.
- Grayl GeoPress Water Filter Bottle: I’ve used this for three years. It filters your water with one press and you can drink directly from it. Never buy a plastic water bottle again!