Kauai’s capital city, Lihue is located on the eastern side of the island and is home to both the main cruise port and the only commercial airport. The city is also Kauai’s main shopping destination and boasts several historic spots, such as Kilohana, a historic plantation, and the Kauai Museum.
Lihue is the gateway to all adventures on Kauai. For a wonderful introduction to the island’s natural attractions, take a flightseeing tour that leaves from town and heads to the Na Pali Coast, Waimea Canyon, and Mount Waialeale. Afterward, visit the Kauai Museum to learn about early Hawaiian life and the geological forces that created the Hawaiian Islands, then stop by the Grove Farm Homestead to learn how sugar plantations shaped Kauai’s history.
Things to Know Before You Go
Lihue is Kauai’s main commercial center and home to some of the island’s best restaurants.
Kalapaki Beach, located just north of Lihue, is one of the island’s top sunbathing spots.
Bring sunscreen, hats, and sunglasses if you plan to visit Lihue’s beaches.
How to Get There
Lihue is home to Kauai’s only commercial airport. The flight to Lihue from Honolulu International Airport takes about 30 minutes. You can also find direct flights to Lihue from some mainland locations, and there are daily flights from Lihue to other Hawaiian islands.
When to Get There
Kauai is remarkably warm all year round and is a perfect destination at any time. Winter is the busiest time in Kauai, but this is also the best time to see humpback whales. To avoid crowds and save on accommodations, visit in April or from August to September. The weather is hot and dry from April through September and rainer during the rest of the year.
The Kilohana Plantation is one of Kauai’s most historic landmarks and a popular attraction for visitors. The fully restored plantation offers hiking paths through the rainforest, boutiques and galleries, and an old-fashioned train that runs through the park. The plantation’s main draw is a traditional luau ceremony, which is offered twice a week and boasts fire dancers, hula performances, and a feast of roasted pig and other local specialties.