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How to Spend 3 Days on Kauai

How to Spend 3 Days on Kauai

With three days on Kauai, there’s plenty of time to explore both sides of the island, including Waimea Canyon and the Na Pali Coast, while also relaxing on the beach and enjoying the island’s laid-back coastal towns. Here are few ways to make the most of your three days on Kauai.   

Day 1: Exploring the Grand Canyon of the Pacific

Spend your first day on Kauai getting acquainted with island life. Get the lay of the land with a scenic helicopter flight or small plane tour, and soar over the lush green valleys and the dramatic cliffs of the famous Na Pali coastline. If you’d rather keep your feet on the ground, take a leisurely tour of Waimea Canyon State Park, known as the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific,” and admire landmarks like the Spouting Horn and the historic Koloa Sugar Mill. You can also cruise down the scenic Wailua River to the Fern Grotto, a lush, fern-covered lava cave.

In the evening, dive into traditional Hawaiian culture with a beach luau. Enjoy Hawaiian favorites like roast pig, deep fried mahi mahi, and poi, a traditional Hawaiian dish made from boiled taro root, then enjoy a show of traditional music and dances performed by local artists. 

Day 2: Hidden Waterfalls and Tropical Treasures

On your second day, head out for a tropical adventure from Kauai’s South Shore: Book an off-road vehicle tour, and venture deep into Kauai’s tropical interior to see hidden waterfalls and beautiful flora. Tours often include lunch and plenty of time to swim; some will take you to the locations where classic movies like Jurassic Park and Raiders of the Lost Ark were filmed.

In the afternoon, relax at Poipu Beach—the most popular beach on the South Shore—or head to the more remote Polihale Beach. Alternatively, if you want to stay active, opt for a thrilling zipline tour in Poipu, a hike along the Mahaulepu Heritage Trail, or a visit to the Kauai Coffee Company, the largest producer of coffee beans in the United States. 

Day 3: Hanalei Bay and the Na Pali Coast

Spend your final day in Kauai exploring the Na Pali Coast and soaking up the sun at Hanalei Bay and Tunnel Beach. There are several options for exploring the Na Pali Coast, including guided hikes, kayaking adventures, sailing trips, and snorkeling tours. Hanalei Bay is a great place to learn how to surf, and there are also paddle-boarding and kayak tours that set out from the bay and head up the Hanalei River. For snorkeling and scuba tours, head to Tunnel Beach; the nearby Haena Beach Park is ideal for those who just want to swim. 

Celebrate your final night in Kauai with a sunset dinner cruise. You’ll enjoy a dinner of traditional Hawaiian specialties while enjoying stunning views of the Na Pali Coast and the sunset over the Pacific. 

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7 Tours and Activities

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Wailua River and Secret Falls Kayak and Hiking Tour on Kauai
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Wailua River and Secret Falls Kayak and Hiking Tour on Kauai

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626
Explore the natural beauty of Kauai on a 5-hour tour that combines a lovely kayaking trip with an moderately easy hike to Uluwehi Falls, also known as Secret Falls. Your experienced guide provides a paddling lesson and guided kayak tour in the Wailua River Valley, following gorgeous waterways through the lush Kauai landscape. Then hop out of your kayaks and take a 45-minute hike to Secret Falls where you can cool off in the clear waters before returning to the Wailua marina the way you came.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$125.00
From
$125.00

Luau Kalamaku with Buffet Dinner & Show
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Luau Kalamaku with Buffet Dinner & Show

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464
Discover the passion and flavors of Hawaii at Luau Kalamaku! Savor a buffet of traditional Hawaiian favorites, beginning with an imu roast pig ceremony. You’ll then be dazzled by a talented troupe of dancers and musicians as they enact legends from Hawaii’s history. The enchanted entertainment includes Polynesian hula dancers, flame throwers and a parade of colorful costumes for a night out in Kauai you won’t soon forget.
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  • 4 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$191.10
From
$191.10

Kauai ECO Adventure Helicopter Tour
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Kauai ECO Adventure Helicopter Tour

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1668
To fully appreciate the beauty of Hawaii’s ‘Garden Isle,’ take to the skies above Kauai on a helicopter tour in a new Eurocopter Eco-Star. Soar over the island’s diverse terrain, from rain-soaked Mt. Waialeale and the waterfalls of Waiapuna to the dry red ravine of Waimea Canyon and the breathtaking emerald spires of the Na Pali Coast. A two-way radio to communicate with the pilot and expansive viewing glass add to the unforgettable flight.
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  • 50 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$389.66
$411.10
$21.44 savings
From
$389.66
$411.10
$21.44 savings

Na Pali Sunset & Sightsee Boat Tour
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Na Pali Sunset & Sightsee Boat Tour

star-4.5
730
Seventeen miles of sea arches, hidden caves, and spectacular shoreline, witnessing the Na Pali coast is a must on any visit to Kauai. On this tour, you’ll get to truly sink it in, exploring the waters’ length via power catamaran, searching for dolphins and humpback whales, stopping for an al fresco dinner, and toasting to Kauai’s “Garden Isle” beauty while the sun falls behind Na Pali’s horizon.
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  • 3 hours 30 minutes
From
$207.56
From
$207.56

Hanalei River Paddle and Bay - Snorkel Tour in Kapa'a, Hawaii

Hanalei River Paddle and Bay - Snorkel Tour in Kapa'a, Hawaii

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127
Explore the tropical waters of the Hanalei River and Hanalei Bay on this guided kayak and snorkeling tour. Paddle through the lush tropical surroundings as you make your way down the Hanalei River out into the open Hanalei Bay, where you can glimpse the famous cliffs of Makana Peak (also known as Bali Hai). Snorkel through the marvelous underwater world of the Bay Reef Lagoon, home to sea turtles and brightly colored tropical fish.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$139.00
From
$139.00

Kauai Learn to Surf GROUP for 2/Private for 3/Private for 4 (your own people)
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Kauai Learn to Surf GROUP for 2/Private for 3/Private for 4 (your own people)

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124
Learn to surf Kauai’s famous waves with this 2-hour surf lesson on the shores of beautiful Hanalei Bay. Your instructor, a local surfing expert, will teach you fundamentals of paddling, reading the waves and standing up. It’s a great introduction to surfing for beginners, and group size limited to four people to ensure a personalized experience. Toward the end of your lesson, enjoy free time in the mellow waters of Hanalei Bay to practice your new surf skills.
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  • 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$94.24
Price varies by group size
From
$94.24
Price varies by group size

Kauai Waimea Canyon and Wailua River Boat Tour

Kauai Waimea Canyon and Wailua River Boat Tour

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163
Discover the stunning beauty and fascinating history of Kauai on this full-day tour of the island’s natural attractions. See the breathtaking expanse of Waimea Canyon and float through tropical paradise with a Wailua River cruise. Relax in a comfortable air-conditioned coach as your local guide narrates the passing sites and shares tales from Kauai’s rich history. Keep your camera ready for many vista points and photos stops along the way!
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  • 10 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$269.99
From
$269.99