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Wailuā

With towering waterfalls, perfect beaches and the state’s only navigable river, this eastern Kauaʻi town is a top destination for adventurers and dreamers alike.

Located on the east coast of Kauaʻi, Wailuā is famous for its close proximity to some of the island’s most popular outdoor attractions. The town is divided into two sections, separated by Nounou Mountain, nicknamed the "Sleeping Giant" because of its distinctive shape. Take the Nounou Trail up to the peak to enjoy panoramic views of Wailuā and the surrounding landscape, before exploring the area’s many other outdoor attractions.

Much of the area’s outdoor fun revolves around the Wailuā River, the only navigable river in Hawaiʻi. Rent a kayak and paddle along a shoreline dotted with ruins and archaeological sites that provide a glimpse into Hawaii’s ancient past. Take a boat tour to explore Fern Grotto. With ferns hanging overhead and waterfall mist hanging in the air, it’s easy to see why this lava cave is a popular filming location. 

Nearby are Wailuā Falls, a towering 80-foot (25-meter) high triple waterfall that creates a dramatic effect in its heavily forested setting. Adventurous visitors can walk down a short trail to the base of the falls. If you’re traveling by car, admire the view from an overlook along the road. Pack a picnic lunch and head to Opaekaʻa Falls, another natural wonder that sits along the Wailuā River. 

After exploring the lush rain forest landscapes of the inland, head to the coast to enjoy the attractions of the Pacific. Lydgate Beach Park features clean shores and prime oceanfront access. The calm waters make it a popular snorkeling spot for beginners. Head a little bit further out to surf the area’s waves. Rock walls were built into the beach, creating small swimming pools that are ideal for children. 

After enjoying the sun for the afternoon, ride along the bike path to coastal Wailuā, where you can enjoy a fresh-caught seafood dinner. Bars often feature live music and offer a relaxed nightlife setting. 

Wailuā is about a 10-minute drive north of Lihue Airport. Public transportation is limited, so renting a car or motorbike will ensure you get the most from your visit.


Top Hotel Deals

See all 346 Hotels in Wailua
The ISO. Island. Sky. Ocean. £91
The ISO. Island. Sky. Ocean.

The ISO. Island. Sky. Ocean.

4-796 Kuhio Hwy, Kapaa
     
    3.3
    of 5, from 656 reviews
    3.0 out of 5.0

    Nestled on the beach, this Kapaa resort is 1.5 mi (2.4 km) from Town Park and 2.5 mi (4 km) from Lydgate Beach Park. Sleeping Giant Trailhead and Opaekaa Falls Overlook are also within 3 miles (5 km).

    Kauai Shores Hotel £95
    Kauai Shores Hotel

    Kauai Shores Hotel

    420 Papaloa Rd, Kapaa
       
      4.0
      of 5, from 1,095 reviews
      3.0 out of 5.0

      Nestled on the beach, this Kapaa hotel is 1.1 mi (1.8 km) from Smith Family Garden Luau and 1.7 mi (2.7 km) from Lydgate Beach Park. Wailua Golf Course and Sleeping Giant Trailhead are also within 3 miles (5 km).

      Courtyard by Marriott Kauai at Coconut Beach £144
      Courtyard by Marriott Kauai at Coconut Beach

      Courtyard by Marriott Kauai at Coconut Beach

      650 Aleka Loop, Kapaa
         
        4.1
        of 5, from 1,920 reviews
        3.0 out of 5.0

        Nestled on the beach, this Kapaa hotel is 1.6 mi (2.6 km) from Town Park and 2.2 mi (3.5 km) from Lydgate Beach Park. Wailua Golf Course and Sleeping Giant Trailhead are also within 3 miles (5 km).

        Aston Islander on the Beach £115
        Aston Islander on the Beach

        Aston Islander on the Beach

        440 Aleka Place, Kapaa
           
          4.1
          of 5, from 2,142 reviews
          3.0 out of 5.0

          Nestled on the beach, this Kapaa hotel is 1.3 mi (2.1 km) from Smith Family Garden Luau and 1.8 mi (2.9 km) from Lydgate Beach Park. Wailua Golf Course and Sleeping Giant Trailhead are also within 3 miles (5 km).

          Plantation Hale Suites £109
          Plantation Hale Suites

          Plantation Hale Suites

          525 Aleka Loop, Kapaa
             
            4.0
            of 5, from 873 reviews
            3.0 out of 5.0

            Situated by the ocean, this spa condo is 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from Smith Family Garden Luau and 1.9 mi (3.1 km) from Lydgate Beach Park. Sleeping Giant Trailhead and Town Park are also within 3 miles (5 km).

            Waipouli Beach Resorts & Spa Kauai by Outrigger
            Waipouli Beach Resorts & Spa Kauai by Outrigger

            Waipouli Beach Resorts & Spa Kauai by Outrigger

            4-820 Kuhio Hwy, Kapaa
               
              4.5
              of 5, from 644 reviews
              4.0 out of 5.0

              Nestled on the beach, this Kapaa condominium resort is 1.2 mi (2 km) from Town Park and 2.5 mi (4 km) from Lydgate Beach Park. Kealia Beach and Wailua Golf Course are also within 3 miles (5 km).

              Kreller's Islander Getaway
              Kreller's Islander Getaway

              Kreller's Islander Getaway

              440 Aleka Pl., Kapaa
                 
                4.6
                of 5, from 11 reviews
                2.5 out of 5.0

                Nestled on the beach, this Kapaa condo is 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from Smith Family Garden Luau and 1.7 mi (2.7 km) from Lydgate Beach Park. Wailua Golf Course and Sleeping Giant Trailhead are also within 3 miles (5 km).

                Kauai Coast Resort at the Beachboy
                Kauai Coast Resort at the Beachboy

                Kauai Coast Resort at the Beachboy

                520 Aleka Loop, Kapaa
                   
                  4.4
                  of 5, from 543 reviews
                  3.5 out of 5.0

                  Located in Kapaa, this beachfront hotel is connected to a shopping centre, 1.4 mi (2.2 km) from Smith Family Garden Luau and 1.9 mi (3 km) from Lydgate Beach Park. Wailua Golf Course and Sleeping Giant Trailhead are also within 3 miles (5 km).

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