About the Poipu Area

The Poipu area, rich in vacation rental opportunities, centers on historic Old Koloa Town, a prime destination for shopping and eating. There is a top-rated championship golf course for the golfer far from home who wants to play through some beautiful terrain. The Koloa Heritage Trail provides a chance to learn more about Kauai’s history.

Poipu Beach Park attracts swimmers of all ages, from the experienced swimmers who brave the surf off to the right, to the baby beach in the shallows of the lagoon, where the seals pull out of the water and sleep on the sand, while children learn to swim all around them. Right down the coast, the Spouting Horn has a blowhole that will send water from a big wave 20 feet into the air.

Kauai History

The island of Kauai rose majestically from the Pacific over 6 million years ago, a smoking volcanic pyramid belching flame. As time passed the iron-rich lava peaks and canyons were ground slowly down by wind and weather, creating fertile topsoil. Plants moved in, birds stopped over on their endless migratory wanderings. Sea turtles discovered Kipu Kai was good for laying their eggs; monk seals established a place to train their pups in the shallows of Brennecke’s Beach in Poipu. Pigs and poi dogs came in the first canoes, along with food plants and, of course, the people.

A special breed of people settled here: Kauai was best known for being unconquerable. Even when other islands formed alliances, Kauai remained a separate kingdom over the centuries. It was only conquered at last, in the 19th century, by trickery. A visiting ali’i (one of chiefly status) brought his new yacht by for the Kauai leaders to admire. They came on board for a meal, and while the ali’i of both islands were feasting, the hatches were quietly sealed, and the ship raised anchor and sailed away.

Kauai Today

Today, Kauai is known as the Garden Island, because any piece of land where the plants are not cut back regularly becomes a spontaneous garden, bristling with colorful flowers and plump juicy fruit. Partly because of this garden-like quality of the land, Kauai has become famous for its slow pace and laid-back life style. The separate, peaceful quality of the island has proved as unconquerable as its people were for centuries.

Here we live “on Kauai time,” which means we’ll get there when we arrive. Here, the journey is the destination, and that takes aloha. Chill out, slow down, and be glad you are alive. This is the place to wiggle your toes in the warm sand and think about pineapples. Just kick off your stress with your shoes, when you come inside.

Kauai Links

IMPORTANT Kauai Beach Safety Tips

Be aware – be informed – be safe – have fun!

Kauai Explorer

Very useful up-to-date information about beaches, beach safety, and trails.

Kauai Weather Radar (requires Java)

View the most current Kauai weather patterns on radar.

Koloa Weather Forecast

Go Hawaii – Hawaii’s Official Tourism Site – Kauai

Great vacation and travel information. Interactive island map.

Na Ala Hele – Hawaii Trail System and Access – Kauai

Maps and trail descriptions for Kauai. “Na Ala Hele” is the State of Hawaii Trail and Access Program. Na Ala Hele has become increasingly engaged in trail management and regulatory issues due to both public and commercial recreational activities and emerging legal issues.

101 Things to Do – Kauai

Available for free all over the island, this website and booklet share activities, locations, restaurants, and beaches.

Kauai Museum

Kauai Museum, Lihue, has a great museum shop, too – Kauai-made products and an excellent selection of hard-to-find books.

Kokee Museum

Visitor and Activity Center – Kokee State Park and Waimea Canyon. Natural History Museum and shop – great Hawaii book selection.

National Tropical Botanical Garden

Kauai has 3 unique tropical botanical gardens – Allerton and McBryde Gardens on the south side and Limahuli Garden on the north shore. NTBG's gardens and preserves are safe havens for at-risk species that otherwise might disappear forever.