Kauai Journals

Kauai on a Budget. Is this Possible?

A December 2007 trip to Kauai by Parradise

Quote: How to see the highlights of Kauai and not break the bank. Money saving tips without compromising Kauai's beautiful offerings.

Kauai on a Budget. Is this Possible?

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Overview

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Can you see Kauai on a budget?Well. . . yes and no. There are definitely ways to take advantage of the priceline, hotwire, timeshare gifts in order to save money so that you can make your money go farther and still enjoy the amazing sites of Kauai. My philosophy is that if you’ve come all this way to this beautiful quiet island, then make the most of it and see what the island has to offer. But I’ve done my best to balance quality with value. We had an amazing week in Kauai and was able to enjoy some of the best that Kauai had to offer without breaking the bank. Here’s some things that helped me save some money:Quick Tips: 1) Gifts for friends like the chocolate covered m...Read More

Barracuda

Restaurant | "BarAcuda"

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Baracuda'sThis place was such a great find by accident. This place has really good food for not crazy Hawaiian prices. This is a tapa’s seafood place. It looks like a little beach house. The 5-6 person booths were a u-shaped suede blue coach encompassing a round table. I think this is a perfect place for parties of 5-6. The porch also provided seating for parties of 2-4. The bathroom was surprisingly well decorated. Two recessed lights lit the orchard and the sink along opposite walls and was really spa like. We ordered 4 small plates which was plenty for the two of us for dinner and it was about $55. The baked cod with baguette was my favorite. The risotto fritters were tasty. The sc...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Barracuda
5-5161 Kuhio Hwy.
Hanalei, Hawaii 96714
(808) 826-7081

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Tidepools Located at the Hyatt, this restaurant sits over a very large Koi pond. Most tables are along the water so you can watch the Koi fish swim around when you eat. The food was. . . . good. . . . It wasn’t bad. Was it worth the hype of going to THE restaurant to go to at the Hyatt. I think I could have done without going. I don’t’ regret going. I don’t’ think I’ll go back. Something we did once and it was a romantic dinner with my husband. Please understand that its not that it wasn’t a good meal. The customer service was very good. What I think you are paying for is the experience. Make sure you get a table by the water because I think that’s really the most unique part of the exp...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Tidepools at the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa
1571 Poipu Road
Koloa, Hawaii 96756
(808) 240-6456

Dock

Restaurant | "Docks at the Grand Hyatt"

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Docks at the Grand Hyatt
Great for lunch when its hang around the Hyatt pool and veg day. They have a self service counter where they sell awesome hamburgers 11.99 + 1.00 for each topping. If your not in a meat kinda mood, they also have prosciutto, grapes, and brie with warm ciabatta bread for 14.99 very yummy. They also have a variety of hot and cold items like cottage cheese, salads, garlic parmesan waffle fries. The same menu is also served at the pool as well, but then you have to tip.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Dock
1571 Poipu Road
Koloa, Hawaii 96756
(808) 742-1234

Na Pali Coast

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Attraction

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Na Pali CoastA must see on your trip to Kauai. You can only see this larger than life cliffs by sea or by helicopter or by an 11-mile hike for the not faint of heart experienced hikers (you also need a permit to hike this trail). I highly recommend seeing the Na Pali Coast BOTH by boat and by helicopter in that order. We did it the other way around, and when you see the coast by air first, it doesn’t look as spectacular by boat. You definitely see different things from the air and the boat. So try boat first then helicopter. We asked about the hike, and we were told every year someone goes missing. The first two miles are very well kept, but after that its not as clear cut. You can’t hik...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Na Pali Coast
Northwest Shore (end Of Highway 56)
Na Pali, Hawaii 96714
808 274 3444

Holo Holo Charters

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Attraction | "Na Pali Coast Sunset Cruise"

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Holo Holo 3.5 hour Sunset Cruise to the Na Pali Coast For those that don’t want the snorkel part of the boat tour and would rather just enjoy the scenery with a sunset, then I highly recommend this particular tour. We saw the beautiful coast, dolphins, whales, and places that you just wouldn’t be able to get to. Let me forewarn you what this is not. This is not a dress up, swanky, quiet romantic, gourmet cruise. The first thing is that you have to take off your shoes and you get them back at the end of the cruise. It’s as if you are walking around in a big bathtub so you don’t slip I advise if you are wearing long pants, make sure you can roll them up. This means you also go to the bath...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Holo Holo Charters
Port Allen Marina Center, Eleele
Eleele, Hawaii 96705
(808) 335-0815

Na Pali Coast

Attraction | "Na Pali Coast by Helicopter"

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Helicopter Tour Air Kauai 50-60min. If you only do one thing on the island, this is it. It is a great way to see all the spectacular sites of the island including Waimae? Canyon, the Na Pali coast, and the many beaches and water falls that cannot be reached by land. As I mentioned in my other reviews, see the sights by land and sea first and save the helicopter for last. Otherwise, its just so beautiful in the air that when you see it by boat or land its not the same. The very knowledgeable local concierge (Amanda Vegas) here at Embassy Vacations the Point at Poipu said her personal favorite was Air Kauai because the windows are bigger. Most of the helicopter companies are pretty similar. ...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Na Pali Coast
Northwest Shore (end Of Highway 56)
Na Pali, Hawaii 96714
808 274 3444

Stevenson's Library

Attraction | "Stevensens' Library at the Grand Hyatt"

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Stevensen's Library at the Grand HyattIf you need a minor dose of mainland nightlife, then this is a perfect place for you. We came here after the first night because we needed something to do after 9pm. Note: you get over this after you’ve been on the island a few days. Named after Robert Louis Stevenson, this jazz lounge is open in the evening and features live music on most nights. Proper dress is required so this give guests at the Hyatt a nice place to hang out when the sun goes down to relax. The décor is darkwood with bult in bookcases into the walls. They have a sushi bar on Friday to Tuesday night. This is a great place to unwind, play some pool and enjoy from their wide selectio...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Stevenson's Library
The Hyatt Regency
Kauai, Hawaii

Poipu Beach

Attraction

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Poipu beachIf your staying in sunny Poipu, where it doesn’t rain as much as other parts of the island, Poipu beach is easily accessible by walking from the Grand Hyatt or the Embassy Vacations Point at Poipu. Just follow Pe’e road along the water and it will take youright to the beach. Poipu beach is a nice park with picnic tables, places to grill, and lots of wild chickens running around. It’s a nice beach to just play in the water, lie on the beach. Brenneke’s deli is right there too if you want to get something to eat but the food is mediocre. Brenneke’s activity center is located here as well where you can book your activities and get discounts for going to the Marriot Timeshare presentat...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Poipu Beach
Poipu Road
Kauai, Hawaii

Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort, Spa & Shopping

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Attraction | "Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort, Spa & Shopping"

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Pool at the HyattMy favorite part of every tropical vacation is the pool and the Hyatt does not disappoint at all. I always reserve at least a day or two just to sit by the pool and do nothing. They have two very expansive pools that stretch lengthwise along the property. They have a sand bottomed salt water pool where kids and kids at heart can rent a kayak and paddle around this pool or more like a lagoon. You can swim in it too and it is more like a man made beach where the depth ranges from a few inches to 6 feet or more. The other normal pool is great for swimming and doesn’t have chlorine which is a nice bonus. They have basketballs and volleyballs to check out for use with the pool. ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on January 10, 2008

Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort, Spa & Shopping
1571 Poipu Road
Kauai, Hawaii
(808) 742-1234

Luau at the Grand Hyatt

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Story/Tip

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Hyatt LuauI’ve never been to a Luau before and there are several to choose from on the island. Since we were staying at the Hyatt, we picked this one out of convenience. There are many to choose from and vary in price. The Luau at the Hyatt wasn't the most expensive one like the the Luau in Princeville, nor was it the cheapest. If food is important to you, then this place will bring smiles. The stage and show was smaller than what I had imagined and seen on TV. I guess I expected a big Volcano in the background with a big Kahuna and lots of tiki torches with drums and chanting with 30 people dancing all around. But what do I know. I’m from California. Most important thing is the food was ...Read More

Best Way to Enjoy the Sunset in Poipu

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Story/Tip

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Go to the Seaview Terrace at the Grand Hyatt in Poipu. The center piece of the Hyatt is the Seaview Terrace that looks out to the ocean. This is a perfect place for sunrise and sunset. The sunrises diagonally to the left when you are looking out at the ocean and the sunsets diagonally to the right. You don’t get a front row seat for either but that makes it a perfect place to enjoy both. It’s a great place to take in the ocean air and unwind. In the morning they serve coffee, fruit, and pastries. In the evening, they serve mixed tropical drinks like your usual Pina Colada, Mai Tai’s and some very good appetizers. I highly recommend the Tempura Ahi Poke. You only get 4 pieces but definitely wo...Read More
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Massage and SpaThe Anara spa at the Grand Hyatt, which is a full service salan, spa, and has its own lap pool., is amazing and very expensive. A 50min. massage will run you $165. If you don’t want to shell out that kind of money, try a 15min. walk down to the Marriot Waihoa where they offer massages on the beach front tables to both Marriot and non Marriot guests. They don’t actually have a spa facility but you can book massages and treatments through the concierge located in their marketplace area. Their prices are a little bit more reasonable at $115 for 50min. The Marriot contracts out through Alexander Spa. It was really easy to get an appointment for an hour or two later. My friend...Read More