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Po'ipu basks in sunshine, thanks to Wai'ale'ale, the Garden Island's legendary cloud catcher. The mile-high peak shields Po'ipu from rain and makes it Kauai's favorite beach destination. Po'ipu means "crashing" as in waves and is favored for body surfing, boogie boarding and surfing. Needle-nosed Nukumoi Point divides Po'ipu beach in two — a sheltered bay for youngsters on the left, a bay full of lively waves for surfers on the right.

Under towering Mt. Ha'upu, beautiful Mahualepu Beach is a two-mile strand of sand dunes inhabited by Hawaiians in 1790s, sometimes visited by endangered Hawaiian Monk seals. Take a trail ride or a ...

Po'ipu basks in sunshine, thanks to Wai'ale'ale, the Garden Island's legendary cloud catcher. The mile-high peak shields Po'ipu from rain and makes it Kauai's favorite beach destination. Po'ipu means "crashing" as in waves and is favored for body surfing, boogie boarding and surfing. Needle-nosed Nukumoi Point divides Po'ipu beach in two — a sheltered bay for youngsters on the left, a bay full of lively waves for surfers on the right.

Under towering Mt. Ha'upu, beautiful Mahualepu Beach is a two-mile strand of sand dunes inhabited by Hawaiians in 1790s, sometimes visited by endangered Hawaiian Monk seals. Take a trail ride or a picnic to enjoy this romantic beach. A pounding shore break keeps novices out of the water on Shipwreck Beach in front of the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort at Po'ipu, an architectural reprise of a 1920s-style honeymoon hotel. Plunge, instead, in the resort's saltwater swimming pools. Spend the day in the world-class spa.

Eat at Tidepools, a thatched roof bistro set on fishponds. Go to Koloa Fish Market for "ono grinds" (good food). Everyone, sooner or later, hits the Beach House for sunset cocktails and the catch of the day. Beyond the beach, attractions pale: Koloa, a sugar town recycled into a retail village, invites browsers, and Spouting Horn, a coastal blowhole, can be a sight to see.

Rick Carroll
About the Expert

Rick Carroll has written dozens of articles on Hawaii and the Pacific. His books include Great Outdoor Adventures of Hawaii, Madame Pele: True Encounters with Hawaii's Fire Goddess, and Travelers' Tales Hawaii.

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Rick Carroll for Triporati

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: A town on the southern coast of the island of Kauai, Hawaii. The town features a group of high-end hotels, resorts and one main shopping center.
  • Research: Wikipedia | Kauai
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight
  • Current Time:

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    May and October, when crowds diminish.