Keep driving past Anini Beach State Park to go to "Anini beach" to be rewarded with a non-busy beach and enjoy looking for shells
Head to Anini Beach State Park for good swimming and snorkeling. We saw turtles while there. Remember the water is most clear in the mornings.
Drive to Hanalei Valley Lookout
A short and steep hike to one of my favorite beaches. We did the hike in the afternoon after a rainy morning and the trail was fine. There are ropes to hang on to for most of the walk down. Bring your snorkel gear because the coral here is awesome with many fish and turtles. Parking is very limited.
Day 3 (Hanalei)
Head to Hanalei Beach for an early morning SUP or surf lesson.
At 8 am Hanalei Surf Rentals opens. They will deliver the board to the beach for you!
Explore Hanalei Town as you find a place for lunch
Head farther West to explore the Waikanaloa and Waikapalae Wet Caves and the Maniniholo Dry Cave
End your day by walking on Lumahai Beach
Day 4 (Travel to Poipu)
Check out of your condo and begin the drive to the south side of the island
Reserve a ticket at Kilauea Lighthouse and Wildlife Refuge to see so amazing coastline and wildlife
Give yourself about 45 minutes here
Stretch your legs with either
Hoopi’s Fall hike (2 mile RT)- it can be muddy so be ready to get dirty
Ke Ala Hele Makalae Path- you can walk or bike this 4 mile path along the beaches of the east side
The price is steep on this condo but the views, location and amenities are worth it!
Spend some time at Poipu Beach
A 5 minute drive from the condo and enjoy swimming and snorkeling here. Seals often land here to sun themselves and turtles can be seen feeding on the coral or relaxing on the island just a bit off from the beach
Day 5 (Southern Adventure)
Explore Kauai Community Farmer’s Market (9:30-1:00 on Saturdays)
Grab some fresh pineapple, local ginger beer, and baked goods
Stop by the condo to drop off your haul and pack your beach gear. Head to Salt Pond Beach for a great swimming and relaxing spot
Need a pick me up and break from the beach? Head to Kauai Coffee for a self-guided tour of the plantation and coffee tasting
On your way back from coffee, stop at Spouting Horn to see the small geyser
Day 6 (West Side)
Grab some snacks, you're going on a road trip to Waimea Canyon and Kokee State Park. There are many pullouts along the drive for you to stop and take in the beauty. Do this drive on a clear day in the mountains and start early as the clouds roll in throughout the day. This is the order we stopped in for viewpoints
Red Dirt Waterfall
Hohonu Awawa Lookout
Waimea Canyon State Park (pay for parking at this point)
Pu'u Ka Pele Lookout
Pu'u Hinahina Lookout (this is a bigger parking lot with a bathroom and two spots for lookouts. This is also the start of several hiking trails)
Pu'u O Kila Lookout (the farthest you can drive. On a clear day it is a beautiful view down the Napali coastline)
On your back down, stop at Kokee Natural History Museum (a restaurant is in the same parking lot)
If you have the time/energy walk the short Iliau Nature Loop and Kukui Trail
Grab a late lunch and take a rest in the condo
Join a rum tour with Koaloa Rum for a fun few hours of driving through the plantation and drinking!
End your day with a hotdog from Puka Dogs. Take your dinner right outside the restaurant to Poipu Beach to watch the seals return to the water and the turtles come onshore. Remember to keep your distance from wildlife and do not shine lights on them even as it gets dark.
Day 7 (Cruising)
Go on a Na Pali Boat Tour with Makana Tours
I suggest a morning tour as the waters are calmer. The tour lasts about 5 hours and was one of the highlights of our trip. The coastline is breathtaking, there is so much wildlife to see and the guides provide the history of the area.
After your tour, grab some food and drinks from the town of Waimea and drive to Polihale State Park to enjoy dinner and watch the sunset
Day 8 (Departure)
Snorkel one last time at Baby Beach (within 10 min walk of your condo)
Checkout of your condo
Drive to Kapaa to return your gear and have lunch
Return the rental car and head back home from LIH airport
We stayed in Princeville during our North Shore stay, if I were to do this trip again, I would stay in Hanalei. There is way more food and activities in Hanalei.
The road between Princeville and Hanalei is closed and is only open at certain hours of the day, which affected how we planned activities on the North shore.
For rental car service, we used Turo and were happy with our experience.
If you're going to stay in a condo, use AirBnb or VRBO to search for properties, but then try to book directly with the host instead of through the site. You can save hundreds in fees.
If you have a restaurant you know you want to eat at, make a reservation! We waited in some very long (1 hour plus) lines for dining.