We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

What to do after landing at 2 PM

New York
Level Contributor
36 posts
11 reviews
Save Topic
What to do after landing at 2 PM

I am going to be landing on Kauai at 2 PM on a Friday in September. I will be staying in Princeville. Can anyone suggest a good use of our first afternoon? I love to be in the water (to snorkel, especially), love photography, and my sister and I enjoy eating 'local' instead of going to touristy restaurants.

We are planning a few higher priced activities (a small plane ride, a boat trip past the Napali coast, possibly a trip to fern grotto), so we would like to also find some less expensive activities to do the rest of the time and hope to eat very inexpensively.

Should we go to the hotel to check in first or is that a waste of precious daylight time? My sister just told me that she "doesn't want to come back more tired than she left" but I really want to take advantage of all of our time there. Our hotel is not on the water from what I understand. Assuming that we have our luggage (just one checked bag) and car by 3 pm, what's next?

As of now we will be on Kauai for 3.5-4.5 days depending on when we choose to fly out (I know, nowhere near long enough but it is what we have).

Thanks in advance.

Level Contributor
8,971 posts
39 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

When you say you are arriving on Island at 2 p.m...Is that an Inter-Island flight from another Island where you are on Hawaii time and have spent a few days?.....Or the first touch down arrival from the Mainland...East Coast NY for example to start off our trip.

Either way, I would suggest you proceed to your accommodation,(Secure your belongings) check in..and check-out your surroundings..perhaps get a few supplies.

If you coming from the Mainland that day...you are going to be exhausted...by the time you get to Princeville and check- in ...it will be close to 10p.m Eastern time. Stay up as long as you can.You will be up very early the next day.

If this an Inter-Island hop...explore the area in and around Princeville...your resort. Have a nice dinner and relax..It's Kauai.

Orange County, CA
Level Contributor
870 posts
4 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

The farmer's market in Lihue (Vidinha Stadium) is at 3PM. It's a stone's throw from the airport. We absolutely love starting the trip with the market.

You can also start off with lunch at Fish Express or Hamura's. Kalapaki Joes has a great happy hour starting at 3PM. Those are all about 5 minutes from the airport.

Be mindful that all of your luggage is in the car though.

Kauai, Hawaii
Level Contributor
1,064 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

I would also suggest getting to your lodging first off, as the drive up in the daylight is nice, and you don't want to wait until dark to find your place. Pick up any supplies you'll need on your way up, snorkel stuff, food, drink, etc. you'll pass many eateries on the way up. The Coconut Marketplace has a few, or in Kapaa town there is the Olympic Cafe, which has something for everyone and much more.

Once in Princeville, if you are within walking distance to Hideaways Beach, you can make your way down there to snorkel, or one of the beaches closer to your lodging, or take a drive into Hanalei Town, get familiar with the area and head to Hanalei Beach, or further up toward Tunnels or Ke'e Beach.

Venice, Florida
Destination Expert
for Kauai
Level Contributor
3,108 posts
97 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

I agree with the first poster -- if you are arriving the same day from New York, you are going to be tired. And it is a good idea to get your bags in your room and not drag them around where they could be stolen. What you ultimtely decide to do might depend on the weather that day, but if staying inl Princeville, it is an easy drive down to Hanalei where you could do a little exploring and maybe drive over to Hanalei Bay for a walk or a dip.

Moorpark, California
Destination Expert
for Kauai, Catalina Island
Level Contributor
14,275 posts
56 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

I agree with the previous posters. We arrived at 12:45 p.m. and after picking up the car, stopped to pick up a few things in storage and then drove to our condo. We unloaded our baggage and we were very tired (we flew non-stop from California). We grabbed an early dinner in the bar at Keoki's and were ready for bed. With only a 3 hour time zone change, and traveling most of the day, we were all ready for bed.

Kauai, Hawaii
Level Contributor
8,506 posts
9 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

only can suggest what has worked for us, but we had a much shorter drive than you will have heading up to Princeville.

Agree....get situated.

We would work as a team after de-planeing.

I would go direct to the rental car van pick up. Erica would head to the baggage area if we had checked baggage.

Saves loads of time, as most people have the entire family standing at the carrosel, along with a hundred or so others just off your plane. Then all of them, at the same time shleping bag after bag onto the rental vans, which are then over crowded.

Arriving at the car rental desk, they are all lined up, and wait and wait, while the upsale follies go on and on.

We avoid that entire senario, since I am usally the only one on the van, with no wait at the rental car off airport office. I get the car, and Erica has our two small duffels, and standing at the arrival area curb. We are on the way to our lodging, while our fellow passengers are just then climbing on board the rental shuttle.


We go direct to our accomodations, and if we arrive fairly early we stow our gear and go to the super market to lay in provisions. And then walk down to poipu beach, and then up to Brenneckes for an E Komo Mia late lunch/ early dinner, and a lava flow.

It will be a bit later when you arrive up in Princeville, probably a good plan to get into your accomodations, take a couple minutes to unpack, and then start getting on hawaiian time.

Lovely short drive from Princeville to quaint Hanalei Town. Kick back and easy going.

If it were us, after leaving Princeville, we would probably stop at Kalypso's in Hanalei, and pull up a stool at the bar. Great fun dining, and excellent drinks, and friendly service. Most visitors sit at the tables, but we like to talk story with the bartender, or bartenderette, and also possibly with any locals or visitors near us. Our party journal has opened.

Unlaxing after a log flight across the CONUS, and then over the " Pond "

plus experiencing all the delight of air travel, and asscoated trials, we just let the whole idea of being on kauai strike home.

No worries, all of the required duties have been completed. Rental Car, getting up to Princeville, settling into your accomodations, getting un packed, and heading into Hanalei Town for some well earned R and R.

Ahhhhhh....slowing down, and getting on island time, and letting all the stress and speed mode of the mainland absolutely vanish from your psyches.

Maybe for sunset , you could take the short drive down the road , next to Kalypso, to Hanalei Bay, and take a short stroll, either after eating, or maybe prior to.

Quite beautiful, lovely bay, lush Tahiti like mountains in the back ground, and very pleasant. Might also help to let Kauai Island Style wash over you, and begin to really begin believe that you are actually on island. You have arrived.

Although you get quite a lot accomplished after arrival, it will not be in a stress mode......everything will flow.....and you will be sitting, looking at each other with a silly happy grin, and touching glasses with happy toasts.

Our plan on arrival day......might not suit others, but sure did feel good to us over those 12 years, and never got tired of our ritual. Actually feels pretty good just recalling those days.

Should you decide to wait until the morning to go to the super market, you might want to have a fun breakfast at the wake up cafe...just across the small road from Kalypso. ( That road heads to hanalei bay beach ).

" Over the Falls " speciality would be a most remembered treat, for your first morning on island. Big Save is just down the main road.

E Komo Mai

Denny and Erica

Santa Rosa...
Level Contributor
16,197 posts
1 review
Save Reply
7. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

"Should we go to the hotel to check in first or is that a waste of precious daylight time? My sister just told me that she "doesn't want to come back more tired than she left" but I really want to take advantage of all of our time there. Our hotel is not on the water from what I understand. Assuming that we have our luggage (just one checked bag) and car by 3 pm, what's next?"

WHOA THERE! It sounds like you're the type-A, afraid to slow down, while your sister is saying putting on the brakes , let's just get checked in first and then take it from there.

I'm agreeing with your sister. Nothing wrong with getting checked in and then deciding what to do the rest of the day. The beaches will still be there. So what if you hit the water a half hour later than you wanted to. You're also taking the chance , albeit small, of something being stolen out of your car if you head to the beach immediately from the airport. Check in, head down to Hanalei , check out the town, check out the beach at Hanalei Bay. If you're staying up in Princeville it's on the way down to Hanalei anyway.

This is the problem with short stays. Some feel compelled to be on the go every minute. Since you and your sister are there for only 3-4 days I think you should come up with your daily itinerary by discussing it with her and involving her.

Edited: 12 August 2010, 21:46
Dallas, Texas
Level Contributor
1,783 posts
8 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

I would head to Princeville, get checked in. Then unload luggage, change clothes and head to Hanalei. It is about 7 minutes from Princeville. Several places to eat and very scenic. Beach across the street .Quaint little shops. Have a drink and some food Walk around a bit in town or at the beach and breath in the fresh air.

Have a blast!

Level Contributor
9,326 posts
1 review
Save Reply
9. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

1. You will be very tired when you arrive and you will be about 5 hours ahead so it will feel like 7 pm.

2. It is a long drive from the airport to Princeville. There may be traffic congestion getting out of Lihue and through Kapaa. It may take more than an hour to get your car and baggage and maybe another hour to get to the hotel.

3. Like the others, I recommend you go directly to the hotel. Check in, get set up then go to the beach and get in the water after you are settled.

Level Contributor
35,295 posts
118 reviews
Save Reply
10. Re: What to do after landing at 2 PM

It depends on when you can check in. If not until 4 (which is most check in times) then stop for lunch (Scotty's?) or put your toes in Kealia Beach or Anini then proceed to the "hotel". Where are you staying? There is only 1 hotel on the North Shore and that is St Regis and it is indeed on the water.

Now breathe!!!!!!!!!

Edited: 13 August 2010, 03:49