Kauai has an incredible hike on almost every side of the island. The hikes in Poipu offer serene coastal views while many of the walking options take you through the flora and fauna for which Kauai is well known. Whether you are looking for a cultural experience, to meander through breathtaking gardens, or explore a seaside hike, the south shore has it all. Here are three hiking and walking recommendations to get you out of the hotel room and on the trail!
The hike to Mahaulepu beach, part of the Koloa Heritage Trail, takes you along the ancient and undeveloped coastline from Shipwrecks Beach (in front of the Grand Hyatt Kauai) to the brilliance of Mahaulepu Beach. The 4-mile round trip hike traverses a rocky trail with extraordinary views around every corner. You may even see a Hawaiian Monk Seal or sea turtles along your adventure. You can park in the lot for Shipwrecks Beach, and walk east across the beach to the start of the hike.
Koloa Heritage Trail
This adventure takes you 10 miles visiting 14 historical sites through Poipu and Old Koloa Town. You will learn about the legend a huge mo’o, or lizard, caught in the famous blowhole at Spouting Horn Park and the Makawehi Sand Dunes in Keoneloa Bay. Other stops include the Sugar Monument in Koloa honoring the Koloa Plantation, the first mill in Hawaii to export sugarcane, as well as the Koloa Missionary Church. Each site is accessible by foot, bicycle or car.
Download the Koloa Heritage trail guide
National Tropical Botanical Garden Walking Tours
Kauai’s south shore is home to the McBryde and Allerton Gardens, known for their unique combination of plant collections, climate, topography, and rich history. The McBryde Garden’s self-guided tour is approximately one mile. Walk at your own pace, but it typically takes about 1-1.5 hours. You will see native and exotic plants as you wander along the Lawai Stream flanked with enchanting palms and awe-inspiring trees.
Allerton Garden, once a retreat of Hawaii’s Queen Emma, is a guided tour showcasing the majestic cliffs of Lawai Valley and stunning bougainvillea among a multitude of tropical plants. This one-mile tour takes about 2.5 hours as you explore some of the most stunning scenery in Poipu.
McBryde Garden Self-Guided Tour (across from Spouting Horn Park)
Visitors Center open daily, 4425 Lawai Road, Koloa, Hawaii 96756
Adults (13 years and above) $20; children 6-12 years $10; children 5 and under are free
Allerton Guided Tour (across from Spouting Horn Park)
Departs daily from the Visitors Center, 4425 Lawai Road, Koloa, Hawaii 96756
Adults (13 years and above) $40; children 6-12 years $15; children 5 and under are free
Pick your preferred pace and terrain, pack some water and sunscreen and head off to explore the magnificence of Poipu.