Okay better late than never right?! You girls have been so patient (and DM follow-ups have been consistent on this post 😉 so today I put together a quick recap of our recent Hawaii trip sharing where to stay, what to do, wear and see!
First I need to say a big THANK YOU to my Honeybee Fam because you girls had so many amazing recs and that’s how I discovered so many of these great places. We hadn’t been to Kauai in almost 11 years so we were really excited to go back and also see the kids experience a new place. My husband grew up in the islands so he literally lives his best life any time we travel somewhere warm and on the beach, and needless to say, the kids are all for it too. This trip was so relaxing and at a chill pace, which was a nice change-up. We rented a jeep (I highly recommend!) and just cruised the island exploring every single day! We always bring our own car seats for those of you who had asked on IG.
We sampled just about every shaved ice spot on the island ;). Hung at some local beaches, took the kids to their first luau and some pretty amazing waterfalls. Here are a few favorites from the iPhone roll (and you can see our trip overload on my Instagram HAWAII highlights tab too!)
Where to Stay
We stayed at The Grand Hyatt on our first trip there 11 years ago! And we stayed there again on this trip. I’ll be honest, I think the main hotels in Kauai could probably use a little revamping. Not much had been updated since our last stay there but the hotel service, food and location were great and the kids loved it so all good! We traveled over to the Princeville side of the island and have to say the views were stunnnnning! I remember telling my husband we should have stayed on this side of the island ;). I would recommend looking into that resort but I also heard they are closing to renovate soon.
Where to Eat
Okay tons of great spots…
Dolphin sushi (on the Princeville side) is one we kept hearing about and wanted to try but didn’t get to. However, we did get to eat at the Manaka Terrace at the Princeville resort and the views were probably some of the nicest I have EVER seen!
If you’re staying at the Grand Hyatt these were all close by and great…
Eating House, Merrimans (downstairs more casual for daytime and upstairs more fine dining) and Beach House.
Beach House is right on the ocean and was one of my favorite spots!
If you’re looking for healthy eats we went to Java Kai twice. It’s a healthy cafe and has a cute boutique attached next door too.
We did a ton of shaved iced sampling and JoJo’s definitely had the best shaved ice on the island!
I also shared some cute roadside finds in my Hawaii Highlights tab so definitely check those out!
What to See
Captain Andy’s boat tour of the Na’Pali coast is supposed to be amazing and I’m so bummed we didn’t get to experience it.
We went to a Luau at our hotel (think they do them every Sunday and Wed?) but honestly, it was great! The kids loved it and the food was actually pretty good!
Adventure out! We rented a jeep and every day we were just driving all over the island exploring new places and have to say that was the highlight of our trip. We found little local beaches like Anini Beach.
A trip to Wailua Falls is a must! There is a rather intense hike down to the bottom but that just wasn’t in our future with a four and seven-year-old. However, we did get to drive up right next to it at a lookout point and it was so stunning. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one like this in real life before.
Waimea Canyon is another drive you must do! We only made it to the Red Dirt Falls but I heard if you travel on to the last lookout point it’s supposed to be spectacular!
What to Wear
It’s casual island vibes all day and night! Here are the staples I brought and lived in all week long!
If you girls have any other Kauai recs please share!! We’re thinking about going back next year but maybe exploring another island so feel free to share which is your favorite!
I love Kauai! We visited the island in July and it is such a magical place. I can not wait to return and discover even more.
Things we loved not mentioned: renting bikes & riding along the Kapaa coast, kayaking the Wailua river to the Sacred Falls, using AllTrails to find amazing hiking locations with incredible views, farmer’s markets, visiting the humane society and taking a dog on a field trip! Oh, and the Lydgate chocolate farm tour, so tasty & fun!
Eating & Drinking: Kauai Juice Co., the Local restaurant & bar, Koloa Rum Co for rum samples, Nani Moon Meadery for mead tasting, Street Burger
I also had the most incredible lomi lomi massage from a woman practicing forty years, she was amazing!
Little bath shop I discovered too- the Garden Isle Bath & Body- the BEST after sun moisturizer, SPF, bug repellent etc. The owner was so sweet and she makes all of her wonderful potions. I could go on & on, highly recommend visiting Kauai if you love laid back beach vibes.
oh amazing love! and omg the taking a dog on a filed trip how awesome!
Aloha! I absolutely love Kauai! My husband and I have been thinking of moving over there for some time now. Anini Beach is pure magic and I LOVE Hanalei. I’ve traveled all over the South Pacific but Kauai ( especially the northeast shore ) definitely rivals places like Tahiti and the Cook Islands. So incredibly beautiful! Love the green, waterfall filled mountains, sunsets at the Hanalei pier, Ke’e Beach, and surfing the south shore. Oh, and I’m totally obsessed with Kauai Juice Co. Seriously, so good. You can order their incredible hot sauce and sambal from their website.
Anyway, I’ve been living on Maui for the last 21 years ( ya, it’s pretty rad here too ) so if you have any questions about Maui, I’d be happy yo answer them 🙂 You can find me on Instagram @mauimandy
omg thanks so much for all this Mandy! We plan on coming to Maui next year I think so ill definitely be asking for recs!! thanks love