You don't have to break the bank to enjoy Kauai’s spectacular scenery. The island’s small size and laid-back vibe make it possible to experience gorgeous beaches, tropical reefs, and lush jungles, all without splurging on big-ticket adventures. Here are our top tips for planning an unforgettable Kauai vacation on a modest budget.
Pick Up a Paddle
Kayaking is a great way to explore Kauai’s coastline and unspoiled interior while avoiding the higher price tags of sailing tours. Paddling down the scenic Wailua River or through peaceful Hanalei Bay allows you to go at a slower pace, so you can spot birds and other island wildlife. Bonus: Your arms will get a solid workout.
Snorkeling Is for Everyone
Because Kauai is ringed by shallow reefs and calm bays, budget-friendly snorkeling is much more popular on the island than pricey scuba diving. Hanalei Bay, Ke’e Beach, Tunnels Beach, and Lydgate Beach Park all offer fantastic snorkeling right off the sand.
Book a Combo Tour
Combination tours may not look cheap at first, but they can be an economical way to fit two or more of your must-do activities into one packaged price. Included transportation makes them an affordable way to see most of the compact island without renting a car.
Pack Your Hiking Shoes
Hiking trails for all levels crisscross Kauai’s landscape, from flat jaunts through the jungle to the epic Kalalau Trail, which hugs the sheer cliffs of the Na Pali Coast. Plus, on this island with few roads, hiking is often the only way to reach sublime spots such as hidden waterfalls and lava caves, so it’s worth the effort.