Top 10 Things to do in Hanalei, United States

February 10, 2018 Hector Krause

The beautiful little town of Hanalei could almost have been designed as a holiday island paradise. Its stunning beach, mountain scenery and its mostly fabulous weather conditions mean that you are going to want to spend most of your holiday outdoors. The bay on which Hanalei is located boasts beautiful white sands. Hanalei beach is perfect for lazing around or taking part in traditional beach games, as well as for enjoying a dip in the clean, warm waters. The conditions are often perfect for surfing, with locals and visitors alike keen to engage. When the water in the bay is rough, there remains an area towards the west of the bay which is reasonably sheltered for bathing. The pier at Hanalei is very important to the culture of the town and is used for fishing, as well as social and musical gatherings. The pier was featured in the musical, South Pacific.Hanalei TownThe small town that is Hanalei is famed for its dedication to Kauai’s island history and culture. Its art galleries contain carvings produced by indigent tribes people from local wood, with many souvenirs available for purchase. The Waioli Mission House and Church date back to the early part of the nineteenth century and were established by Christian missionaries to Kauai from the US mainland. Regular music and celebratory events are held, where you will be given the opportunity to taste poi, a locally produced Hawaiian delicacy. The freedom of your holiday rental will also allow you to sample the local island cuisine at the town’s traditional restaurants.
Restaurants in Hanalei

1. Princeville Botanical Gardens

3840 Ahonui Pl, Princeville, Kauai, HI 96722-5530 +1 808-634-5505
Excellent
85%
Good
11%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

5 based on 594 reviews

Princeville Botanical Gardens

Princeville Botanical Gardens is a family owned and operated garden paradise located in the Princeville area on the magnificent north shore of Kauai. The Robertson Family, with the help of their close gardening friend Michael, have transformed their 9-acre retirement home into a breathtaking garden with dramatic landscaping in two steep valleys. The tour includes homegrown honey and fruit samples, as well as a chocolate tasting that teaches you the history of chocolate making. You'll have fun learning about the uses and folklore of native Hawaiian plants and exotic species from around the world. RESERVATIONS REQUIRED. Visitors can experience the garden on pre-scheduled tours on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. Tours are not recommended for children under 6 years. Moderate mobility is needed to go on our nature walk. Please be sure to call us before visiting. Thank you!

Reviewed By Lisa S

Yes, there was a delicious and informative chocolate tasting, but that wasn't even the best part of this wonderful experience! It's been the surprise hit of our trip to Kauai this year (family of five, ages 13-52). The grounds themselves are stunning, a longtime labor of love that has yielded a remarkable variety of flowers, fruit, trees, plants and landscape. The people who run the gardens are equally remarkable — from Jason (who lent me his own hat!) to the knowledgeable and good-natured Harold, to Steve, our tour guide. About Steve: I hope you're lucky enough to have him as your tour guide on a Tuesday. He knew the name, uses and origin of virtually every plant we walked by, and offered samples of yummy fruits and leaves at various points. The power of these plants is extraordinary -- we learned so much about their ability to heal and gained a new respect for natural medicine. Steve's ability to connect with everyone on the tour, from small children to adults, was touching and very much appreciated. We left the gardens feeling nourished and grateful! It's a good idea to bring a hat, sunglasses, and comfortable walking shoes on this three-hour tour.

2. Limahuli Garden and Preserve

5-8291 Kuhio Hwy, Hanalei, Kauai, HI 96714 +1 808-826-1053
Excellent
79%
Good
17%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 599 reviews

Limahuli Garden and Preserve

Reviewed By WellTraveled3 - Lexington, MA

We really enjoyed the guided tour at the Limahuli Garden and Preserve. This is a lot to see in the large terraced garden and our tour guide provided an excellent commentary on the many types of plants and trees, while relating everything to,Kauain history and culture.

The two hour tour covers the entire 3/4 mile trail up and through the gardens, including amazing views of Bali Hai and the ocean. While not as big as the Allerton Garden, the Limahulu Garden places an emphasis on indigenous and endangered plants, some of which are now extinct in the wild.

Well worth the $40 ticket price to take the guided tour versus the $20 self-guided tour. The first tour begins at 10am with signup at 9:30.

One of the highlights of the North Shore of Kauai and on the way to the heart of the Napali Coast where the trails and parking lots can get very full. The Garden was not very crowded, so a very nice walk in a beautiful natural setting.

3. Pali Ke Kua Beach (Hideaway s Beach)

Ka Haku Road, Princeville, Kauai, HI 96722 +1 808-464-0840
Excellent
69%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 448 reviews

Pali Ke Kua Beach (Hideaway s Beach)

Reviewed By TrvlHawaii - Surprise, Arizona

Pali Ke Kua Beach is wonderful as many Kauai beaches are. We have a timeshare in the Princeville area and have been going yearly for 30 plus years. The beauty of the island and the friendliness of the people are awesome. The first year we went we hit the tail end of a hurricane and had 30 inches of rain which for this desert family was fascinating! The run off made the waterfalls run red and for yards out the ocean also had the same tint. Fascinating! However, one warning: high in the moutains are wild pigs which urinate on the dirt. The pigs are not ill themselves but are carriers of leptospirosis. If there is an unusual amount of rain that dirt can be washed into the fresh water streams as it did that year--ocean water is not a problem. My family went to a local beach which was fed by a stream. Our son decided to do some exploring and crossed the stream which was running red due to Kauai's red dirt that had been washed into it. After that day it was time to go home and our son became very ill--vomiting, etc. Didn't think too much about it but after a day or so at home I decided to call Kauai's Department of Public Health to see if some odd kind of virus was showing up there. They immediately asked me if he had been in the fresh water stream near one of our favorite beaches and I said yes. They said to immediately get him to an infectuous disease specialist as there had been an outbreak of Leptospirosis which can be fatal to humans. Lepto is one of the puppy shots given to dogs. I immediately called the specialist and explained and they said to get him there within the hour. Lepto is curable IF you get to a doctor within a certain time limits but if not can cause loss of limbs or death. Luckily, we made it just in time.

4. Hanalei Beach

Hanalei, Kauai, HI 96714
Excellent
72%
Good
21%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Hanalei Beach

Reviewed By 3dogsinthecountry - Minneapolis, Minnesota

Flat soft sand, lots of space to spread out, close to great food, spectacular beauty, boogie boarding.... this place is so beautiful. My favorite beach in the world.

5. Queen's Bath

Kapiolani Rd, Princeville, Kauai, HI 96722
Excellent
61%
Good
26%
Satisfactory
7%
Poor
2%
Terrible
4%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 1 reviews

Queen's Bath

Natural pool carved into a lava shelf, the size of several large swimming pools.

Reviewed By Chris N - Leawood, Kansas

We went after two days of rain, it was extremely slick! I highly suggest tennis shoes and a walking stick if wet. Beautiful views, crabs and waterfalls along the way. I would not recommend in wet weather with flip flops. We saw many falls in the mud. A worthwhile adventure!

6. Wai`oli Hui`ia Church

5-5363A Kuhio Highway, Hanalei, Kauai, HI 96714 +1 808-826-6253
Excellent
70%
Good
27%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 133 reviews

Wai`oli Hui`ia Church

Reviewed By Lynette58 - Newnan, Georgia

We attend this church each time we are in Kauai. It is beautiful church in the center of Hanalei. The doors are always open during the day for people to visit or leave prayer requests. During the Sunday service, the music and some scripture reading are in Hawaiian, but the sermon is in English. We renewed our vows at this church on our 25th anniversary, and always go to services when we are on the island.

7. Hanalei Valley Lookout

Hwy 56, Hanalei, Kauai, HI +1 808-464-0840
Excellent
64%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
5%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 618 reviews

Hanalei Valley Lookout

Reviewed By HeyCath2602 - Chicago, Illinois

This was our 14th annual trip to Kauai and for the first time, the view from lookout point was terribly obstructed. The trees need to be trimmed. Many people were walking past the guard rail in order to get better pictures. We didn’t even take any pictures because the view just isn’t what it used to be.

8. Hanalei Pier

Hanalei, Kauai, HI +1 800-464-2924
Excellent
61%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 518 reviews

Hanalei Pier

Reviewed By Annie19a - Boise, Idaho

Excellent place to view surfers at play and good place to surf. View of Hanalei Bay is great. Parking can be a problem.

9. Puu Poa Beach

5454 Ka Haku Rd, Princeville, Kauai, HI 96722-5233
Excellent
78%
Good
19%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 56 reviews

Puu Poa Beach

Reviewed By csarchibald - San Marcos, California

If you are staying at the resort this is the best beach to go to, but if you are staying elsewhere, it can be a hassle to get there. The path down to the beach starts up at the resort. The currents can be dangerous here and be careful of the coral. My daughter got her foot under a coral head as a wave hit and broke a toe.

10. Tunnels Beach

7640 Kuhio Hwy, Kauai, HI 96714
Excellent
74%
Good
20%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 854 reviews

Tunnels Beach

A beach in the northern part of Kauai.

Reviewed By Brent W - Stowe, Vermont

Our mission was to get to literally the of the road and we did it! On our meandering way back, we stopped at Tunnels beach. Very pretty beach, but aren't they all in Hawai'i?! Really.

The tunnels were huge. So awe-inspiring to walk into. We would have gone further but we weren't as adventurous as others and didn't want to get dirty.

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