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Things to do in Kauai

Lush rainforest, dramatic coastlines, and stunning waterfalls make this Hawaiian island a natural paradise.

Our most recommended things to do in Kauai

Kauai: Luau Kalamaku with Open Bar and Buffet Dinner

1. Kauai: Luau Kalamaku with Open Bar and Buffet Dinner

Start your evening with a lei greeting. Browse the wares at the craft fair of local artisans. Witness the unearthing of the pig from the imu. Discover the legend of Kalamakū with a thrilling theatrical performance. Enjoy local favorite dishes and drinks from the open bar. Sit down to a luau buffet of poi (mashed starchy vegetables), fresh salads, Kalua pork baked in the imu, and seasonal fish. Dig into teriyaki chicken, fresh fruits, salad, pineapple upside down cake, haupia (coconut pudding), and a banana crème tart. After dinner, experience the the ancient Hawaiian legend of Kalamakū (child of the new land). Watch the story of an epic voyage taken by islanders between Tahiti and Kauaʻi on one of the longest sea roads of Polynesia. Through laughter, fear, seduction and fire, a new legacy is created, born from the cherished seeds of their ancestors. See fire poi balls and traditional fire knife dancing during the show. Have the chance to take a photo of the cast at the end of the show.

Lihue: 65-Minute Scenic Flight Tour Of Kauai

2. Lihue: 65-Minute Scenic Flight Tour Of Kauai

Climb aboard the new Australian-made G8 AirVan for a personalized 65-minute Grande Deluxe Air Tour of Kauai. Fly through the Waimea Canyon and then catch your breath as the majestic cathedral spires of the Na Pali are suddenly beneath you. Continue alongside the ridgeline behind the lovely Hanalei Bay and travel south to see the numerous waterfalls of Hanalei Valley as well as the crater below Kauai's Mt. Wai`ale`ale (weather permitting). In winter months whale watching may also be possible! The experienced pilot will tell you about the rich history and mythical lore of Kauai, and using the 2-way intercom you can ask questions. Only Wings Over Kauai features an expert agricultural narration by the owner and chief pilot, the research scientist Dr. Bruce Coulombe. For approximately 65-70 minutes, you’ll experience a safe and thrilling experience that’s the ultimate air tour of the Garden Island. What makes Wings Over Kauai unique is a dedication to customer satisfaction and attention to detail. The ultimate goal for every flight is to make sure every passenger has the best experience possible.

Kauai: Niihau and Na Pali Coast Full-Day Boat Tour

3. Kauai: Niihau and Na Pali Coast Full-Day Boat Tour

Climb aboard a catamaran, custom-built on Kauai, and explore the awe-inspiring Na Pali Coast. Cruise along the coastline and snorkel by Hawaii’s Forbidden Isle of Niihau on an unforgettable day of adventure. Start your day with continental breakfast onboard, as you head northwest to explore the waterfalls, lush valleys, hidden beaches, and sea caves along the Na Pali Coast. Admire the views and learn the history of this beautiful region. Head across the channel to Niihau, known as the Forbidden Isle. Once you arrive at Lehua Crater, the captain will choose the best place for you to snorkel in the clear waters. Receive snorkeling instructions and gear up in the equipment provided. Admire the unique underwater formations, carved by ocean currents, and look out for diverse aquatic wildlife. After snorkeling, enjoy a deli-style buffet lunch including fresh bread, meats, cheeses, veggie toppings, and crudité, and pasta salad. Assorted soft drinks are served throughout the tour, with beer and wine served after snorkeling. During your meal, listen to stories about the island and history of Niihau, and connect with the culture of Kauai as you sail back to the marina.

Kauai: Waimea Canyon, Jurassic Falls, & More Helicopter Tour

4. Kauai: Waimea Canyon, Jurassic Falls, & More Helicopter Tour

Take a journey on and over the Garden Isle and see scenery that's been the backdrop for Hollywood blockbusters for decades on this Kauai helicopter trip. See Manawaiopuna Falls, Olokele Canyon, Waimea Canyon, and the Na Pali Coast.  Take off on an up-to-date helicopter and immediately start taking in a bird's eye view of the lush jungles, red canyons, choppy seas, and gorgeous landscapes that make up Kauai, the oldest island in the Hawaiian Islands archipelago.  Marvel at Manawaiopuna Falls, also known as Jurrasic Park Falls thanks to it being featured in the hit 1993 Steven Spielberg film. This privately-owned location is only accessible by helicopter, making it part of the 80% of Kauai that isn’t accessible by car. Land in Olokele Canyon, home to endangered plant life. Once kapu (forbidden), guests can now enjoy this pristine paradise valley. Soar over Waimea Canyon next, and see characteristic crimson and emerald jagged cliffs. Before heading back to the starting point of the trip, enjoy views of the world-famous Napali Coast. Spot jagged cliffs rising straight from the sea, making for one of Hawaii's most famous destinations.

Kauai: Island Highlights Helicopter Tour

5. Kauai: Island Highlights Helicopter Tour

Explore Hawaii's Garden Isle, Kauai, from the best vantage point possible: the sky. Get a bird's eye view of some of Hawaii's most gorgeous scenery on this helicopter tour. See the island's most iconic locations, including the Na Pali Coast, the Waimea Canyon, the Jurassic Falls, and more. Uncover waterfalls, towering red cliffs, emerald green jungles, and the lush paradise of one of Hawaii's oldest islands on this tour. See these natural marvels from a different perspective all while listening to your pilot's information about each sight. Soar above the thundering Jurassic Falls — the iconic waterfall featured in Jurassic Park. Fly above the rolling red hills and valleys of the Waimea Canyon, and glide through the air over Kauai's most iconic location: the Na Pali Coast. Marvel at the countless waterfalls nestled in Waialeale Crater. Best of all, snap pictures of these natural wonders without having to stop along the way, all from the comfort of your helicopter seat.

Kauai: Sightseeing Flight over Napali Coast & Waimea Canyon

6. Kauai: Sightseeing Flight over Napali Coast & Waimea Canyon

Soak in spectacular views of the lovely island of Kauai from the air on a sightseeing flight tour. Let your pilot fly you over places that are completely inaccessible by car and remain untouched by human hands. Experience the untouched beauty of this spectacular island from a unique perspective. Aboard your scenic flight tour, discover the best of Kauai on an incredible flying adventure. Fly over the Garden Isle's most scenic areas to truly get a sense of this majestic place. Soar over the cathedral-like spires of the Napali Coastline and high above Hanalei Bay's white crescent sand beach. Snap some pictures of the azure blue waters below, as well as the monumental red valley walls of Waimea Canyon.

Kauai: Napali Coast Sunset Sail with Dinner

7. Kauai: Napali Coast Sunset Sail with Dinner

Marvel at the stunning beauty of the Napali Coast glowing in the afternoon sunlight during an unforgettable evening on the water. Hop onboard a modern, state-of-the-art, fully-equipped vessel for a ride along Kauai’s coastline. The 50’ catamaran features indoor and outdoor seating areas, restrooms, and unrestricted views of the coast. On your journey, the friendly and knowledgeable crew will share their knowledge of the coast and stories of the people who made this area their home. Watch the colors of the coastline change as the sun heads toward the horizon. Be on the lookout for marine life like manta rays, dolphins, turtles, seals and humpback whales (in season). A delicious selection of appetizers and a Hawaiian-style dinner are provided, along with island juices, soft drinks, beer, wine, and mai-tais. Sip champagne at sunset before heading back to Port Allen to complete the evening. The tour operator is committed to responsible tourism by minimizing their impact on natural resources and preserving the natural beauty and unique history of Kauai. Certified as an Ocean Friendly Restaurant and member of the Hawaii Ecotourism Association, help the operator encourage others to travel lightly by taking the Holo Holo Pono Pledge.

Kauai: Napali Coast Sail & Snorkel Tour from Port Allen

8. Kauai: Napali Coast Sail & Snorkel Tour from Port Allen

Climb aboard a custom-built catamaran for a true sailing experience along the remote coastline of Napali. Discover why 'Napali' means 'the cliffs' as you gaze upon its world-renown 4,000-foot heights, lush valleys, waterfalls, and hidden beaches that have attracted painters, photographers, and Hollywood throughout the years. As you head for the first destination, your crew will entertain your imagination with legends and stories of the ancient Hawaiians who once lived along the cliffs.  Once stopped, jump or use the waterslide off the back of the vessel to slip into the warm, turquoise waters of the Pacific Ocean. Snorkel (ocean conditions dependent) above a tropical reef along Kauai's coastline. Snorkel gear, including floatation and professional instruction, are provided to ensure you have a great time in the water. After your snorkeling experience, enjoy a continental breakfast, gourmet deli lunch, and beverages served on board. The tour operator is committed to preserving the natural beauty, unique history, and rich resources of Kauai. The tour operator supports ecotourism and encourages you to take the pledge to travel responsibly by respecting the land (aina), sea (kai), and traditions of the Hawaiian people.

Kauai: VIP Island Dinner and Luau Kalamaku Show

9. Kauai: VIP Island Dinner and Luau Kalamaku Show

At historic Kilohana Plantation's 60-acre orchard and agricultural park, experience an unforgettable evening featuring a delightful four-course island dinner and spectacular 45-minute main show chronicling an epic sea voyage between Tahiti and Kauai along one of the longest sea roads of Polynesia. As the sun sets, leisurely walk to the luau pavilion on a torch lit path, where you'll enjoy premier seating at the Luau Kalamaku main show that pays homage to Kauai's mythology and the ancient Hawaiian legend of Kalamaku "child of the new land." Relax with live Hawaiian music and marvel at the cast of entertainers, including graceful hula dancers and traditional fire knife and fire poi ball dancing. The interactive stage design with transport you back in time to ancient Polynesia, during the time of the people’s remarkable migration to the Islands. Four-Course Meal Menu: First course with a choice of: • Shrimp phyllo or • Roasted vegetable tartine Second course with a choice of: • Island caprese or • Caesar salad Third course with a choice of: • Fresh catch and kalua pork or • Short ribs and kalua pork Fourth course with a choice of: • Taro and Hawaiian sweet bread pudding or • Profiteroles with vanilla bean ice cream or • Seasonal fruit bowl

Kauai: Full-Day Tour with Fern Grotto River Cruise

10. Kauai: Full-Day Tour with Fern Grotto River Cruise

Experience the beaches of East Shore, the striking geology of Fern Grotto and lush North Shore. This tour shows you the spectacular sights of Kauai. Follow your guide for a journey on land and water. Your day starts as your tour guide picks you up on Kauai's North or East Shore. The comfortable, air-conditioned touring van offers large viewing windows on all sides for you to admire the beaches, mountains, and waterfalls. Arrive at the Wailua River and step aboard a spacious open-air riverboat for a leisurely journey to the Fern Grotto. A short walk through the rainforest brings you to one of Kauai's geological wonders, where ferns grow upside down in a natural amphitheater of lava rock – the perfect location to be serenaded and entertained by Hawaiian musicians and hula dancers.  Continue your journey to other spectacular sites on the North and East Shores of our beautiful Garden Isle.

Frequently asked questions about Kauai

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Other Sightseeing Options in Kauai

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What people are saying about Kauai

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 1,353 reviews

If you need one reason to book safari helicopters here it is, they are the only company that can land in the middle of the “Grand Canyon” with beautiful views and even a chance to meet one of the largest landowners in Kauai. Other reasons include amazing employees and pilots including Robert and Kate. Wonderful group of people, with vast amounts of knowledge. Super safe, even had a chance to fly near a whale that was breaching. Truly once in a life time experience, highly recommend!

As a disclaimer, we had never been to a Luau before. That being said, my wife and I had the best time EVER. The staff was soooo friendly, the food was amazing, and the performances top notch. I would HIGHLY recommend Luau Kalamaku!

The whole experience was great. From the lei greeting, the crafts, open bar, everything was really well done. The meal was excellent, and the show was one of the best we have seen. Thank you

A fun filled day on the River and local sites. Greatly enjoyed the warmth and friendly atmosphere created by our hosts.

Friendly and knowledgeable pilot. Great views of the island. Highly recommend it.