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Just have to ask why?

Bellefontaine, Ohio
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Just have to ask why?

So many people ask "should I split my stay in Kauai to stay on the North then South Shores or vice versa".

I need to understand....

I have been to Kauai 5 times in the last 8 years and we spend 10 days in the same place and I just never understood why people feel they have to split there stay. The Island is not that big...You can travel from one side to the other in a few hours...

Maybe I am strange but that is half the fun on my vacation, looking at the scenery when you drive...

Or maybe I am used to taking an hour to get to any big city from where I live...

Just curious....

Just like to here peoples thoughts..

New Jersey
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149 posts
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1. Re: Just have to ask why?

My husband likes to stay at one resort at a time. He is not interested in packing up and starting over again. We like to settle in and then relax and enjoy.

Moorpark, California
Destination Expert
for Kauai, Catalina Island
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2. Re: Just have to ask why?

We normally do not split our stay and always stay in Poipu (since hubby has customers to visit in Port Allen and Lihue) BUT...

I found that I did not spend nearly as much time on the north shore as I would have liked. With the kids especially, it was just a lot of work to drive up there, see what ever and then drive back. I remember B4 kids, we spent the day on the north shore, had dinner at Charo's and the drive back home to Poipu was miserable and long.

In summer 2007, we decided to do one week in Poipu and NOT drive up to the north shore at all. Spent all of our time on the south and west side. And then another week on the north shore and explored that area. We also tried more the restaurants in Hanalei and Haena for dinner and did not have a horrible drive back. I really felt that we saw and did more all over.

Last summer, we stayed put in Poipu and again, the days we drove up to Princeville and Haena were exhausting. Just too long of a day and we never had dinner up there. So again, we will split the stay in 2010 with a full week in each location.

I guess I've gotten old enough now that I really don't want a vacation after my vacation! :) We like to take everything nice and slow and have plenty of "down" days. So for a two week stay (or longer), splitting the time makes sense for us.

La Mirada...
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for Kauai
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136 reviews
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3. Re: Just have to ask why?

We like splitting our stay just so we aren't driving so much. However 2 weeks is the shortest time we've ever been on Kauai. Last couple of trips have been 3 weeks. We go fishing most every morning, so it's real convienent not to need to drive far in the dark or at the crack of dawn. This way we get in prime fishing time! We stay in Kalaheo and in Kilauea. I would not split a stay of less than 2 weeks.


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4. Re: Just have to ask why?

I used to split my stay on Kauai because I loved the pool at The Hyatt as did the kids. I couldn't afford more than a few days, but it gave us that "resort" feel. Then we would head up to the North Shore, do the condo way of life, and just explore all the beach activities we could pack in during the summer.

I know the island is small and it is perfectly doable to do it either way, but often 1st timers want to "experience" both areas of the island in every way not just seeing it for a few hours.

The Colony, Texas
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for Cozumel
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5. Re: Just have to ask why?

The first time to Kauai we stayed in Kapaa - it seemed like every day we were driving one direction or the other for more then an hour - packing it in before dark so that we would be back in Kapaa. We always seemed rushed.

Last year we opted for 5 days North shore - 5 days West side. I absolutely love the north shore for snorkeling - beaches and Hanalei at night and early morning was awesome. 5 days on the west side for the boating excursions we love to take ( at the crack of dawn) - and Wiamea.

This year we are bringing my little girl - we are doing 5 days Kapaa - no North shore for us this trip but we will take at least 2 day trips up there. 5 days West side - again our excursions and Wiamea. If we hadn't stayed in Wiamea last year we wouldn't have discovered Yumi's pies for breakfast - they sell out so fast!

It's just more of an intimate feel of each area I think when we spend a few days and nights there. I loved doing it last year and I hope we will love it this year too.

Princeville, Hawaii
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6. Re: Just have to ask why?

Jamalam221: I concur that if one is used to long work commutes, the drives from north to south shore on Kauai (or further!) do not seem bad. Especially when the views are so gorgeous all around. My previous stay, I spent 5 days at the Waikomo Stream Villas, Poipu and 5 days at The Cliffs, Princeville. It was great to putz around each area.

But this past winter, we spent 2 months in Princeville and enjoyed the long drives clear out to the Polihale Beach road. Many days, we'd check the Sheraton webcam in Poipu, grab our stuff and go snorkel there. But I do tend to prefer the shopping, dining, and lifestyle scene on the north shore. We just settled in nice and cozy at the Kamalii Villas. They had a pool and hot tub for those "iffy" days, and were close to Hanalei for quick trips.

One thing I did not have energy for was the 2-hr drive up to Koke'e, hike the Awa-awapuhi Trail/Nua- lolo Loop, and drive 2 hours back. No can do. But the weather was quite rainy, so I never had the temptation to do that anyway.

Kauai, Hawaii
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7. Re: Just have to ask why?

I guess it comes down to just what ever suits you.

We pretty much, in all of our years visiting, stayed in poipu.

But, we did drive up to the north shore when the sun was shining. We love it up there. We did not mind the drive, and we had fun even going up there, and enjoyed the beauty that we were able to share on the way as well as when we arrived.

We would pick the least rainy time of the year.

We met several couples yesterday at poipu beach who had driven down from the north shore. Why, because it is winter time, and it was sunny in poipu.

Each one that we talked to was from the northern lattitudes of the mainland. Washington State, Oregon, Minnesota, North Dakota, etc.

We also, do not mind driving from poipu to check out the different areas, from the north shore...to Koke'e and Waimea Canyon, and inbetween.

However, we would not stay in Kapa'a, due to the almost yearly rough water, non swimmable beaches, etc. Not to mention the traffic, and stip malls, we just have no love for any of that.

If we were still visitors now, We would elect North or South Shores, or the Kalapaki Marriot in Lihue. The reason is that there are beaches for us to have fun at.

As well as other types of free adventures, paid activities, good eateries, hiking, and all round easy good times.

We would be where the fun was, and not have to drive every day to get someplace else.

Now, that is just our own long time way, and each visit was super, and no worries or regrets.

One time we did split up the north and south shore stay....poipu kai for about 10 days, and 3 or 4 up at the Hanalei Bay Villas in Princeville.

Not a problem, we travel light, with that one duffel each, so moving was not such a big deal. But, we only did that on one occasion.

Living here, we do have the opportunity once in a while for a mini vacation of a couple or three days, up to the north shore, or even just over to poipu.

Great times.

But, if we were coming over from the mainland, let say in june, we would pick one shore where we could do a lot of things, and then also have some days that we would explore another area.

Again, it is just what makes you feel good. We like simple and easy. WE had 12 years of superb visits.


Dallas, Texas
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8. Re: Just have to ask why?

We have been several times and I admit to being "hooked" on the north shore. We own at The Cliffs for only one week/so we are staying at Sealodge for one week/Cliffs for another. I would have rather stayed in one place for the two weeks. I was so excited I won a free week from the Cliffs last year from Trading Places//But we could not find any occupancy at the Cliffs so we will use it later in the year "hopefully" for La or Fl//I didnt realize it was so difficult to cash in that "free week"/actually disapointing big time//Sorry got off the subject//I was hoping to stay in one place//But when you afre in paradise who cares????

Kauai, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Kauai, Kapaa
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59 reviews
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9. Re: Just have to ask why?

We always used to stay at Kapa`a Sands just down from the Coconut Marketplace. We really enjoyed having water's edge just 25 yards or so away from our lanai. Morning fruit and coffee there, and a glass of wine in the evening were supremely relaxing, not to mention falling asleep to the sound of the surf. Nice cooling breezes, too. We never minded driving north or south, and we liked having several restaurants so easily accessible.

San Diego...
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10. Re: Just have to ask why?

Same reasons as offered in the many threads on this debate.

Some people don't like driving 2 hrs each way from Poipu to Ke'e a couple of three times. Not to mention it contributes to our traffic issues and is a general waste of gasoline. Hours spent in a car is waste to many of us. Better to spend that time on the beach or hiking or in the pool.

Others like to visit more than one resort. I don't much care for the plop in one spot vacation. We tend to move from place to place if we're going for more than a few days. But to each his own.