7. Learn to Scuba dive
Feeling adventurous? Or maybe you already know the ropes when it comes to scuba diving. Either way, exploring Kauai’s sea life is an exhilarating way to experience the island’s underwater scenery.
8. Lumahai Beach
Do you remember when Nurse Nellie tried to wash that man right out of her hair in the 1958 film classic “South Pacific”? Now’s your chance to visit the spot where actress Mitzi Gaynor gave it her best shot. Just don’t try it yourself: The water at Lumahai Beach is notoriously rough. Still, the setting at Lumahai Beach is the Hawaii you’ve seen on postcards. As long as you’re careful, a visit to Lumahai is more than worth it. Recent travelers agree — especially those looking for a little privacy to sunbathe, picnic, or enjoy one of Kauai’s romantic sunsets.
9. Kauai Backcountry Tubing Adventure
Travel back in time as you embark on a scenic tubing adventure down the irrigation canals of an old sugar plantation in Kauai. See land that has never before been open to the public as you’re whisked down ditches and flumes in an inner tube. Relax and let the gentle current carry you, and take a post-tubing dip in a natural swimming hole and enjoy a picnic-style lunch. It’s an exhilarating ride that is easy enough for all fitness levels!
10. Hawaiian Luau
At some point, you’re gonna get hungry, especially if you’ve done at least a few of the things on this list. The Luau is a traditional Hawaiian party or feast that is usually accompanied by entertainment. It may feature food such as poi, kalua pig, poke, lomi salmon, opihi, haupia, and beer and entertainment such as traditional Hawaiian music, fire dancing and hula.
11. Kauai Museum
Before you begin your outdoor Kauai adventure, don’t you want to know a little bit about the history of the oldest island in the Hawaiian archipelago? Then look no further than the Kauai Museum, a Greco-Roman structure in the heart of Lihue that showcases the story of Kauai’s origins, both natural and political.
Though the museum is small, recent travelers praise the depth of history contained within its walls. Once inside, you’ll embark on a historical journey that began in 1778, when Captain James Cook dropped anchor in Waimea Harbor. The museum displays old maps of Hawaii and other relics from Cook’s voyage, as well as a model of his Royal Navy sloop, the HMS Resolution. The collection also features indigenous Hawaiian artifacts that Cook may have encountered during his 18th century tour of Kauai, including ornate feathered leis and wooden outrigger canoes. If you’re looking to bring a piece of Hawaiian history back home, the gift shop serves as the perfect place to pick up a souvenir.
The Kauai Museum welcomes visitors from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Adult admission costs $10, which includes a guided tour.
12. Kilauea Lighthouse
The 52-foot-tall Kilauea Lighthouse hasn’t been an active structure since 1976, but it remains a popular tourist attraction for numerous reasons. One, it boasts outstanding panoramas — Kilauea is perched on Kauai’s northernmost tip with stunning views of the island’s turbulent northern waves. Two, it shares space with the Kilauea Point National Wildlife Refuge, where migratory seabirds nest. And three, there’s a chance you’ll catch a glimpse of some humpback whales swimming through the waters during the winter.
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