The fourth largest Hawaiian island and the most northerly, Kaua‘i is also the oldest in the archipelago and was the first to be inhabited, with the first settlers arriving hundreds of years before those on the other islands. It was also the first of the islands to be visited by Captain James Cook, when he landed at Waimea in 1778.
One of Hawaii’s top attractions, much of the Napali coast’s grandeur is hidden and inaccessible to visitors, other than by helicopter and many helicopter sightseeing companies offer tours of the island. Visitors can also view its rugged and exotic beauty on a boat tour, while those who want to experience it the hard way can rent a kayak and paddle along the coast or hike the 11-mile Kalalau Trail. Many people trek and stay for a night, camping out in the wilderness, although a permit is required. Others prefer to walk a couple of miles to a secluded beach before returning.
Kauai’s famous coastline is truly majestic, with emerald green pinnacles towering around each bend. The magic found here on the colossal cliffs of Napali radiates out to all of Kauai’s shores, where golden beaches meet the azure sea. This is an island that is a true tropical rainforest, blanketed under a woven patchwork of greenery and cascading waterfalls. Some parts of Kauai are only accessible by helicopter, allowing you a bird’s eye view of the island’s lush interior. For a closer look, gardens like Na Aina Kai Botanical Gardens immerse you in natural beauty.
Lose yourself to the gentle trade winds. Listen to your thoughts amidst the native birds chirping. Inhale deeply and smell the fertile earth all around you. In this atmosphere of pure tranquility, you can take joy in life’s simplicities. Exploring the verdant Lawai Valley or walking at sunset along Poipu Beach, you sense a spirituality that exudes from this mystical island. Several botanical gardens provide excellent spots for reflection and perspective. Some of the scenic views on Kauai hikes can be especially therapeutic. Go ahead and lose yourself to Kauai’s beauty. You’ll be amazed at what you may find. Whatever you choose to explore, be it land or sea, you’ll get a dose of nature’s finest work. It is this unrivaled beauty that replenishes the spirit and soothes the soul.
Go ahead and play an extra round of golf. Lounge under a cucumber masque. Add extra time to your massage. On this enchanting island of indulgence, let someone else become the caregiver.Give in to a variety of exotic body treatments and local massage techniques at Kauai’s sumptuous spas. Don’t hold back. Try a lomi lomi massage and a fresh fruit facial, then soak in the whirlpool or relax in the sauna. After you’ve pampered yourself, enjoy an exquisite meal with fresh island fish and locally grown produce. Tomorrow, why not do it all over again? Kauai gives you the chance to indulge your inner-child, who never seems to get enough attention.
©2009 HAWAII VISITORS AND CONVENTION BUREAU
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