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Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
22 posts
2 reviews
Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Hi, my husband and I are staying in Princeville during our week in Kauai in January. We are planning to do a Napali boat tour out of Poipu if the conditions allow, which ends at about 2:30pm, and then picking up dinner take-out and heading up Waimea Canyon from Poipu around 3:30pm, and then we can watch the sunset and have a picnic at Kalalau lookout. Is this a good plan? I've heard that you should go early for Waimea but thought it would be nice to head to Waimea after our boat tour since we'll already be halfway there in Poipu and not have to drive all the way from Princeville. Thoughts? Thanks!

texoma
Level Contributor
220 posts
3 reviews
1. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Sometimes the canyon gets socked in with clouds in the afternoons. The angle of the sunlight makes a difference too. I was there mid day and it was spectacular.

Santa Rosa...
Level Contributor
19,250 posts
1 review
2. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

I've read a lot on this forum that one should go early in the morning. I've never paid much attention to when I've gone and have to say I've had good experiences no matter what time of day, for the most part.

I only have one question for you though. If the boat tour ends roughly 2:30 p.m. why are you heading back to Poipu just to leave Poipu again about 3:30? You say "headng up Waimea Canyon from Poipu" and you also say you'll be "halfway there in Poipu". Do you know that going to Poipu is back-tracking about 35-40 minutes east when the canyon is west of where you'll be ending your boat tour? Poipu is not along the way from to the canyon.

Edited: 3:11 pm, October 18, 2014
Kaua'i, HI
Destination Expert
for Kauai, Poipu, Lihue
Level Contributor
18,002 posts
34 reviews
3. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Aloha from Kaua'i!

My husband has a regular routine of running from the Kekaha Ballpark up to the intersection of Koke'e and Waimea parks every Sunday (probably not tomorrow since the storm..).......and honestly usually when we are up there around 9am (when he finishes) - it is clear and beautiful. But clouds do usually drift in after that time in my experience - sometimes they drift in and out of the lookout and you get a great view regardless!

The general rule of thumb is that getting up there early in the day is the best - but if the only time you can go is in the afternoon, then I'd do I rather than miss it altogether. The "cons" about that are also the big tour buses that chug their way up the winding, steep road, spewing fumes at the cars behind them, and creating long lines until they pull over. They start going up late morning and go until sometime in the afternoon.

That is another good reason to go early in my book! I hate getting stuck behind one of those!

Malama Pono,

Janet

California
Level Contributor
41,915 posts
130 reviews
4. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Napa, She said her boat tours leaves out of Poipu. Are there any boats out of Poipu????

Moorpark, California
Destination Expert
for Kauai, Catalina Island
Level Contributor
15,936 posts
59 reviews
5. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

<<Napa, She said her boat tours leaves out of Poipu. Are there any boats out of Poipu????>>

The only tour out of Poipu is Captain Andy's sunset cruise of Poipu (Kukui'ula Small Boat Harbor). It's about 2 1/2 hours. The Napali Boat Tours will leave from Port Allen or farther west at the Kikiaʻola Small Boat Harbor. I'm sure she means Port Allen.

Edited: 7:58 pm, October 18, 2014
Santa Rosa...
Level Contributor
19,250 posts
1 review
6. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Jebett, no, there are no Napali boat tours out of Poipu. This is why I asked the question. She has to be referring to Port Allen. Thus my question about heading eastward to Poipu then back west to the canyon.

Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
22 posts
2 reviews
7. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Thanks everyone! I looked up Captain Andy's and I was mistaken, thinking the trip leaves out of Poipu - you all are right, it leaves out at Port Allen! So no we wouldn't even go to Poipu at all that day, we'd just do the boat tour out of Port Allen, then head up Waimea canyon, watch sunset at the last stop, then a long drive back to Princeville!

Los Angeles...
Level Contributor
22 posts
2 reviews
8. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Also do you think if we do a helicopter tour, we will see enough of the canyon to not need to make the drive at all? Or is the drive itself worth it even if you've seen it via helicopter? THANKS!

California
Level Contributor
10,293 posts
11 reviews
9. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

Yes, I think it's worth the drive especially since you'll be fairly close after your boat tour. I wouldn't necessarily stay for the sunset--just play it by ear. Enjoy the beautiful drive, check out Kekaha Beach Park and the little town of Waimea.

San Diego...
Level Contributor
310 posts
7 reviews
10. Re: Waimea Canyon Afternoon/Sunset - Good or Bad Idea?

The only negative I see to an afternoon visit is the lady that sells fresh-cut pineapple at the overlook will be gone already!