Frequently Asked Questions About Kauai
Let us answer the most frequently asked questions about Kauai. Save time, make good decisions, and learn important Kauai information quickly! Planning a Kauai vacation can be easy. Take the time to read about what makes the Garden Island unique. Who has the best food? What should we bring? When is the best time to go? Where is the best place to stay? How do we get there? Everything you need to know before planning the perfect Kauai vacation!
19 Frequently Asked Questions About Kauai, Hawaii
1) What are the best beaches?
Kauai offers an abundance of pristine beaches in the Hawaiian Islands. Nearly 50% of our shorelines are covered with sand. With 91 beaches in 111 miles of coastline, beach hunters often get overwhelmed with their choices. Use our Best Kauai Beach Guide to get started!
2) What animals are dangerous?
Kauai is unlike most tropical places on the planet! There are no snakes, alligators or dangerous spiders! There are no mosquito born illness in Hawaii like other tropical areas. Mosquitos, in general, are not as prevalent as other mainland locals. If you are a ‘sweet one’, make sure to bring bug spray on excursions into the interior. On a rare occasion you may see a centipede, and although their sting will pack a punch, they are not dangerous. Geckos are your best friends. They share all Kauai accommodations. Kauai is one of the safest places in the tropical world!
3) Will we see whales?
Yes, in the winter months you will see whales on ‘almost’ every boat trip or just observing from the shore (Dec-Mar). Whales start showing up on the season migration from Alaska in late fall. They are plentiful all winter and slowly start to disappear in early spring. Hawaii’s seasons are the same as anywhere else in the northern hemisphere.
4) Is Kauai safe?
Crime rates are relatively low on Kauai. The most common crime is petty theft. Make sure not to leave essential belongings on the beach when out in the water. Car beak-ins are also common when parked near remote trail heads and attractions. Otherwise, in general, the island is a safe place to bring your family.
5) What should we know about ocean safety?
This may be the most important subject to seriously take note of. The ocean is there to be enjoyed and it certainly can be, but make sure you have some understanding of the ocean around Kauai before jumping in, especially when on a non-lifeguarded beach. Check out ActivityKauai.com’s Kauai Ocean Safety to get up-to-date quickly.
6) Should I rent a car?
Yes, renting a car is crucial to exploring and getting the most out of the Garden Island. Public transportation is reliable, but won’t offer you the wide scope of opportunity to experience the raw natural beauty of the island. Kauai is beautiful everywhere, but some of the best experiences are found during personal exploration. Most tours and activities don’t do pick-ups, so freedom of travel is the only way not to miss the best of what’s available. Scooter rentals and cycling can be dangerous with limited roads that have solid shoulder lanes.
7) Where should I stay?
Just like any other vacation destination, Kauai offers brand and boutique hotels. For around the same price or less, you can also find vacation rentals and private condos. Booking early is highly recommended when it comes to accommodations and airfare, and also for car rentals and tours. There are lots of resources for rentals online. Princeville and Poipu areas tend to be the most “touristy”, but are also beautiful. Staying in Kapaa provides a great central location to Lihue airport, tours, and exploring the island. It’s hard to go wrong when visiting Kauai…. every place has something to offer!
8) What are the best tours?
There is something for all walks of life and all levels of adventure on Kauai! Most travelers looking to get a well-rounded view of the Garden Island in one week like to see the island by Land, Air, and Sea. If you’re looking for a special experience, perfect for your family vacation or travel group, speak with our knowledgeable staff today at 1-800-380-Kauai (5282). We will work with you to fine-tune personalized vacation planning unique to your needs. Contact us before you arrive. We’ll make sure your precious vacation time is not wasted. We know the best oppertunities to match your interests and activity level.
9) Should I watch the weather report?
Yes. But take it with a grain of salt unless seriously dangerous weather is approaching the islands. We have all heard the old adage “If you don’t like the weather, wait a minute and it will change”. Very few places hold true to this statement like Hawaii. The weather report will always have showers included, along with sunshine, warm temperatures, warm ocean water, and tradewinds. And yes, there can be overcast skies often that come and go. Our tradewind pattern all year long allows for passing showers, or ‘blessings’ as the Hawaiians would say. The weather is impossible to predict unless there is a large disturbance in the area. Often these predictions are false as well. Live like the locals and pay attention to weather, but don’t fixate on it like many do on the mainland. What you see is what you get! No rain…No rainbows!
10) Why so many chickens?
This is the most commonly asked question on any tour on Kauai. You can’t go anywhere without seeing chickens.…on the side of the road, in the woods, at the beach, at the gas station, in shopping centers, at outdoor restaurants, at your vacation rental, everywhere! They are a distinct piece of Kauai’s cultural identity, and all with amazingly varied and elaborate rich color patterns! And you don’t need an alarm clock as they alert you to day before daybreak! The answer to the chicken phenomenon is layered. To cover this topic properly, our guides have written a thorough blog to answer why there are so many chickens on Kauai.
11) When is the best time to come to Kauai?
In our opinion there is never a bad time to visit the island. Each season is different and beautiful. The peak seasons for Kauai travel are when mainland public schools are on vacation. We really love the fall and spring, but summer and winter are awesome too! Kauai only sees about an 8 degree F variation in temperature annually so warm weather and warm ocean water is always abundant.
12) What are the best restaurants?
The dining options are plentiful on Kauai. Eat like the locals and shoot for fresh fish and island produce. Many restaurants are trending towards local sustainability by sourcing farm-to-table menus. The most common local fish are Ahi (yellow fin tuna), Mahi-mahi (dolphin fish), and Ono (Wahoo). See our complete list of Kauai restaurants to get started. Want more recommendations near your accommodation; give us a call at 1-800-380-Kauai (5282).
13) What should we bring?
Don’t bring too much stuff! The temperature on Kauai is very neutral (average 78 degrees F). Only bring warm clothes in the winter for Waimea Canyon exploring, or taking a doors-off helicopter tour any season of the year. Use our ActivityKauai.com pack list for more details.
14) What to wear for special occasion?
Kauai is very casual. When going out to a nice dinner, luau, or special occasion, the dress code is comfortable, classy and casual. Men usually where collared buttoned aloha shirts made from light-weight materials. Nice slip-ons [sandals or flip flops) work for almost any occasion. Women wear informal maxi-dresses with comfortable sandals or fancy flip flops. Rarely will you ever see a coat, tie, gown, or high heels when attending any event on island.
15) Is there any nightlife on Kauai?
In general, it’s hard to find a meal after 9 pm. There are only a few spots on island that provide nightlife, such as Trees Lounge, Tahiti Nui, Tortilla Republic, Cafe Portofino, and Sheraton Rum Fire. Travelers to Kauai usually get to bed early and wake up early. Even late sleepers wake up early on Kauai due to the three to six hour time difference from most mainland destinations. If Kauai is too slow, Maui and Oahu will provide more entertainment and nightlife. Few travelers complain there is not enough to do. Most need a vacation from their busy lifestyles.
16) How can we support the local community?
There are so many ways to give back to Kauai. One of our favorites is borrowing a dog for the day from the Kauai Humane Society. Taking a shelter dog on a field trip gives these animals exposure to the community. Three to five animals a week get adopted through the KHS field-trip program. Some travelers miss their animal friends back home and just enjoy time with a friendly local dog. There are many other ways to give back to our community. Getting involved in the place you love to visit creates deeper, more authentic traveler experience. It is also a great way to meet locals and acquire connections.
17) Where do I buy local Kauai products?
Kauai products are harder to find then you’d think. Many places claim to have local products, but actually carry Hawaiian print products from elsewhere…read the tag before you buy! Use our Local Product Store to find real products of Kauai. All our products are ready to flat-rate ship in one box and are also available for pick up in Kapaa.
18) Where do we find local farmers markets?
Farmers Markets are plentiful on Kauai. They can be found somewhere on island seven days a week. This is the best way to meet locals, eat great organic food, and get a unique cultural experience. Check out our full Kauai farmers market schedule.
19) Why so much spam?
If you go to McDonald’s in Hawaii, number one on the value menu for breakfast is spam, eggs, and rice. This should tell you a little bit about how big spam is in Hawaii. Grocery stores can also have an abundance and a variety of spam, and likely more than you have seen back home. If you want the full explanation, check out our explanation about why is there is so much spam in Hawaii.
Hope you enjoyed our list of the most frequently asked questions about Kauai page. If you have any more questions about preparing for a successful vacation to Kauai, we are standing by the phone 7 days a week from 7am-7pm(HST). We would be happy to provide you any free information we have to share. Call 1-800-380-Kauai (5282) today!
20) How do we get there?
When getting to Kauai, we suggest choosing a direct flight from the west coast to Kauai. Over the past 15 years more airlines have added Kauai routes. Direct flights from Phoenix, Los Angeles, San Fransisco, Oakland, San Jose, San Diego, Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver come to Kauai weekly. Its already a long flight from anywhere, taking a direct flight from the west coast will cut hours off your travel time. Currently, Hawaiian Airlines and Alaskan Airlines are the local choice for reliable, timely flights with solid customer service.
At ActivityKauai.com, we love to share! Give us a call at 1-800-380-Kauai (5282). We are happy to answer the most frequently asked questions about Kauai travel.