I have been lurking here on the forum for several months, planning our trip. What follows is my tentative plan:
We will be visiting Hawaii for the first time this summer. We will be attending the American Psychological Convention in Waikiki July 30-August 4. My plan is to then fly to Kauai at the end of the convention & spend 7 or 8 days there before heading home. I already have a car reserved for Kauai, but have not made any other reservations. Most likely, we will fly to Kauai on Aug. 4, if there is a late afternoon flight.
It will be just my husband & I, active older adults. We like off-the-beaten path sort of travel -- we are not fancy resort or posh hotel types. I'm leaning strongly towards staying on the North Shore, perhaps in one of these cottages: www.halemakaicottages.com/HaleMakai.aspx Another possibility would be to rent a small place elsewhere in H'aena or in Haneilei. I think we would like wandering around Haneilei, but would prefer to be very close to the beach, both for views & for walking along the beach.
My tentative plans include a doors-off helicopter tour, snorkeling and walking along the beach. If we get our kayaking muscles back in shape before then (we're experienced sea kayakers, mostly on the Chesapeake Bay & some along the coast of Maine), we might kayak along the Napali Coast: https://www.kayakkauai.com/cart.php… If we don't do the kayak tour, we'll probably do a Napali Coast boat tour, preferably one with the smaller boats that goes in close to shore.
One day will be a drive up the Waimea Canyon. We probably won't be doing a lot of hiking this year due to my recent back problems -- several herniated disks -- unless it gets a lot better soon (I think I will still be able to kayak, though). If my Dr. approves, might also want to do some zip-lining, too. Other, less vigorous plans include the luau at the Mediterranean Gourmet. I usually don't plan too tightly on trips like this, but will keep in mind a general itinerary (like the days we can do the luau).
Thinking we might just stay near the Lihue airport the first night, take the helicopter tour the next morning, then get in our rental car & drive up to the North Shore, maybe stopping at the waterfalls & the lighthouse on the way.
I know we will have a long flight to get from the east coast to Hawaii & back home. (And my husband will probably suffer from jetlag on the return trip) Looking currently at United for their schedules & also we might be able to upgrade to 1st with miles.
Any advice & recommendations welcomed!