Whether you have visited Kauai or not, an excellent way to prepare for the adventure and enhance your enjoyment is to read the Lonely Planet: Discover Kauai guidebook. The book can be purchased at any major bookstore. After more than 20 years of visits, we still refer to the guidebook and keep a copy within our property, for guests use.
Kauai is known as the Garden Island and it is considered to be the most beautiful of the Hawaiian Islands. The reason for the lushness is the rain. Without the rain, it would be just another volcanic desert island, which you would never visit. The rain, when it falls, is usually intermittent and warm and seldom interferes significantly with your activities. But, just know that it will rain occasionally and be prepared to enjoy the most incredible rainbows and waterfalls.
There are gorgeous beaches and you will want to visit as many as possible. But, not all are safe to swim and those that are typically safe, are not always safe. Kauai is an island with potentially strong currents and under tows. So be aware of the ocean and weather conditions and, if in doubt, don’t enter the water. Use sunscreen.
The typically safest beaches, which we enjoy, are Hanalei Bay, Anini, Tunnels and Kee Beaches. Lumahai, on the other hand, while one of the most beautiful and well known Kauai beach, is also one of the most dangerous. The ocean is the most calm in the summer months and the most dangerous in the winter.
When departing the island in the early or late evening, we have found that checking your bags, a few hours early, when the airport is slow, makes departing easier. Then, you can enjoy a final Kauai meal, at Dukes or Cafe Portofino at the nearby Kauai Marriott Resort, prior to returning your rental car.