For Americans with only two weeks vacation, trying to decide where to spend your precious time off is a challenge. You want everything to be just perfect, but there are so many places to choose from, that it's hard to know which you'll like best.
Beautiful scenery, great food, and plenty of opportunities to relax and enjoy life are probably on your short list. If they are, you should consider the island of Kauai.
Let me tell you why.
First of all, it's easy to get to. Having been to Europe recently, I can say that the twelve-hour flight from the west coast is no picnic. Hawaii, on the other hand has good air service from almost anywhere. Kauai's main airport, Lihue, is a short hop from Honolulu. And there are numerous flights every day.
Kauai is very safe. Lately, some of the world's most popular tourist destinations have become a lot less appealing because they're so dangerous. Greece, Thailand, and Mexico all have had situations that travelers should avoid. But Kauai is a pretty sleepy place where you'll likely feel very comfortable.
Few places are as easy to get around as Kauai. It's small, so you can go anywhere as a day trip. There are only a few main roads. And you can probably see everything you want to see in a week.
Compared to Europe or the Caribbean, flights to Kauai are affordable. And hotels and resorts on the island are about half what they are on Maui or the Kohala Coast of the Big Island. If you want to stay at the St. Regis Princeville Resort, you'll pay top dollar, but there are lots of Kauai hotels in all price ranges. And most of Kauai's most beautiful attractions are free.
It's hard to imagine a place of its size with so many different natural wonders and experiences. As you'd expect, there are countless beaches, but even those range from golden sand to rocky cliffs to towering dunes. There's a 3,600-foot deep canyon, countless waterfalls, a rainforest, and one of the most spectacular stretches of coastline in the world.
Active travelers can go from dawn until dusk and never run out of things to do and see. If you love water sports, you can kayak or paddle the Na Pali Coast or the Wailua River, surf, snorkel, scuba dive, windsurf, or jet ski in the ocean. There are hundreds of hiking trails through all kinds of terrain, and adventures like zip lines and bungee jumps for the brave of heart.
Beach lovers can do no better than Kauai, which has some of the prettiest beaches in the state. At Hanalei Bay, you'll be surrounded by towering cliffs and waterfalls. At Polihale, you'll see nothing but sand and the Pacific as far as the eye can see. Unless it's whale season, and then you'll likely spot some of them.
The people on Kauai are just as nice as they come. They go the extra mile to make sure that your experience of their home is positive and memorable.
Now that you know a little more about Kauai, hopefully you'll put it at the top of the list for your next vacation. We can not wait to go back.