Hawaii February 20, 2018
The Most Hawaii Town Ever And Why You Need To Visit
The Hawaiian Islands are home to a variety of incredible cities — from tiny communities to the capital city of Honolulu. And while we love all of Hawaii’s towns and cities, there’s one place that perfectly captures the spirit of Hawaii. Not only is it close to the ocean, but it is surrounded by towering mountains. And, of course, it perfectly embodies the Aloha Spirit and laid-back island vibes most often associated with the islands. The town? Hanalei. Trust us — you’re going to love it, that is if you don’t already.
With a population of little more than 470, Hanalei has got it all: a charming small town vibe, pristine white sand beaches, magnificent, lush surroundings, a plethora of shopping and restaurant options, as well as an impressive dedication to the spirit of Hawaii and cultural preservation.
Hanalei is located on Kauai’s north shore just past the luxury resort area of Princeville, and is accessible only via small one-lane bridge leading into town. In this incredibly tiny town, just 0.8 square miles, you will find an unusual mix of dining and shopping options and tons of old Hawaii charm that will take you back in time to the good old days before Hawaii became one of the world’s premier tourist destinations.
The town is also home to stellar views of Kauai’s taro fields, surrounding mountains, various art galleries, and historic sites, as well as fresh air and the breathtaking Pacific Ocean. Could it get more Hawaiian than this?
Once you make your way into town, you'll be surrounded by breathtaking views every direction you turn — from the stunning Hanalei Bay…
Hanalei Bay is a near-perfect semi-circle of white sand — and is two miles long, 125 feet wide, and surrounded by majestic mountains.
...to the striking Hanalei Valley Lookout.
A jaw-dropping vista awaits you at the Hanalei Valley Lookout — the Hanalei River and expansive taro fields are flanked on either side by majestic mountains and waterfalls. Just off Highway 56/560, this picturesque lookout point proves that it’s not always about the ocean views.
The beautiful town and neighboring Hanalei Bay are so quintessentially Hawaiian that they have been featured in various films, including the 1958 musical classic, South Pacific.
Enough about the views, Hanalei is also home to countless incredible places that make this town so quintessentially Hawaiian.
There’s the Waioli Mission House…
Built in 1912, the green, spired church is often regarded as the most photographed building in Hanalei, Kauai — and no one is questioning why. The church’s landmark green shingles and stained glass windows have become synonymous with Hanalei. In 1837, the house was the home of early Christian missionaries, and was restored in the 1920s. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, inside the home you’ll find a wall clock that was installed in 1866, and still keeps perfect
...and the stunning Limahuli Garden and Preserve.
Situated in a tropical valley is Limahuli Gardens, overlooking the ocean and Makana Mountain, and featuring lava rock terraces built by ancient Hawaiians in order to cultivate taro.
You’ll also find countless restaurants that are an embodiment of Hawaii...
These epic eateries include everything from hole-in-the-wall food trucks like Fresh Bite Kauai and Trucking Delicious to sit-down establishments like Bar Acuda, an amazing tapas bar, and The Hanalei Gourmet, a deli and cafe with amazing desserts. Don’t forget to pay a visit to Wishing Well Shave Ice for a sweet treat.
...as well as a variety of charming shops and galleries.
Unique shops include country stores, clothing boutiques, and even mysticism retailers. You can browse the town’s many art galleries to find local art, as well as carvings made from native Hawaiian
While many people choose to stay at a resort in neighboring Princeville, the best way to experience all that Hanalei has to offer is to stay in one of the town’s peaceful bed and breakfasts, or any number of vacation
It doesn’t get more Hawaiian than this lovely little town on the northern coast of Kauai, so what are you waiting for? Plan your visit today!
If you’ve already spent a weekend in Hanalei, you might be interested in checking out one of
these 12 cities — they’re perfect for a short getaway!