Imagine stepping into a natural oasis, where the air is filled with the fragrance of blooming flowers, the soothing sound of waves crashing on the shore, and the inviting sight of lush tropical landscapes.
Welcome to Kauai, the Garden Island, where the hotels beautifully intermix with their surroundings. It encompasses everything that Aloha State has to offer.
Kauai’s allure goes far beyond the expectations of a traditional island getaway. What sets Kauai apart from its sister islands like Oahu, The Big Island, or Maui is its authentic natural essence, along with fewer tourists.
The island calls out to beach lovers, hikers, and adventurers with its renowned pristine beaches, vibrant rainforests, and laid-back atmosphere. In Kauai, you can experience many state parks, botanical gardens, boat and ziplining tours, and even helicopter tours.
Many people come to hike the famous 11-mile Kalalau Trail along the Napali Coast in the north shore. Others come for a relaxing dip in the crystal clear waters of the Pacific at Poipu Beach Park or Hanalei Bay, to name just a couple.
Whatever you’re looking forward to when it comes to exploring Kauai, you’re almost sure to find it. There are quaint island towns offering delectable cuisine, an array of shopping options, and many opportunities to learn more about the island’s culture.
It’s the fourth largest island in Hawaii, and as such, you’ll find more than enough things to do. Luckily, there are also a wide variety of accommodation options on this island.
To ensure you have a great holiday, we’re going to take a look at the best hotels in Kauai. This way, you can be sure you’ve picked the perfect option for your bucket-list trip!
The Best Hotels in Kauai
Kauai has some of the best places to stay in all of Hawaii, from luxury beachside resorts to small boutique hotels to budget-friendly options.
You can find hotels in all areas of the island, as it’s an amazing tropical destination all around. You can read more about each area in our where to stay guide.
If you’re looking for a romantic hotel on this island of Hawaii, it will be hard to find a better option than the Ko’a Kea Resort. Its rooms provide oceanfront views along with luxury amenities.
Their spacious rooms and suites come with their own private balconies, rain showers, tropical decor, king beds, soft bed linens, an HD TV, and more.
You can indulge in exquisite dining at the world-class restaurant on its premises, The Red Salt. It serves some of the best seafood on the island with its own unique touch and local ingredients. You can also sip on handcrafted cocktails in a lively lounge.
Pamper yourselves with intimate spa treatments, including couples massages and facials, or let yourself loose on their invigorating outdoor yoga classes right on the green grass.
The hotel staff can help you book nearby adventures like ziplining tours, horseback riding, and golfing. There is plenty of watersports to do in Poipu Beach, like snorkeling and kayaking or simply lying on the soft sand.
Onsite, you’ll find a swimming pool and pool bar to unwind. All its amenities make it one of the top luxury hotels on Kauai, where you don’t have to worry about a thing.
The Kauai Beach Resort & Spa is tucked away in Kauai’s tropical paradise between the north and south shores of Lihue.
There’s an abundance of activities to do here. You can relax in the inviting hot tubs or choose from any of the four stunning pools. Each boosts unique features like cascading waterfalls, sandy bottoms, and thrilling water slides.
And you won’t want to miss the Driftwood Bar for your poolside refreshments. Satisfy your cravings with an array of diverse dining options, from casual to elegant in the Naupaka Terrace, and even poolside meals, or unwind with evening cocktails in the cozy lounge.
You can embrace the vibrant local culture with evening entertainment, including hula dances often performed poolside. Visit their onsite spa for skin care treatments, massages, yoga sessions, and more.
We personally like its surroundings where you can get mesmerizing views of the mountains and clear blue Pacific Ocean right from your room window.
Venture beyond the resort to explore Hanalei Bay or nearby Waimea Canyon for beach access, hiking, swimming, kayaking, and simply soaking up the sun. Kauai Beach Resort & Spa is truly a one-of-a-kind island getaway with an all-inclusive feel. It’s one of the many all-inclusive resorts on Kauai.
1 Hotel Hanalei Bay is a haven for those seeking luxury amenities with tropical vibes. Overlooking Hanalei Bay, you can choose from rooms with views of the mountains and ocean.
Each room also features an HDTV, plush pillow top mattress, and best of all you don’t need to pay a resort fee unlike at other hotels.
It has everything from exploring the hiking trails to watching beautiful sunsets. The hotel also offers yoga and surfing lessons. You won’t find a shortage of things to do or ways to immerse yourself.
For something more chill, try their art classes or wellness activities and services at their spa and salon.
Your taste buds are in for a treat too. Their farm-to-table delicacies are sourced from onsite gardens, local fisheries, and nearby farms. The ingredients are all used in the hotel’s several restaurants, including elegant Japanese seafood cuisine.
And that’s not all, Hanalei Bay’s best shopping, museums, and kayaking spots are all within a short distance from this wellness hotel.
While the Koloa Landing Resort has an award-winning swimming pool, its tropical rooms deserve just as much recognition.
These aren’t your typical hotel rooms since they’re villas. You can choose from studios with kitchenettes or villas with many bedrooms and full gourmet-style kitchens with a bathroom in every room.
You’re also guaranteed a fully stocked kitchen upon arrival with everything you need to make the stay more comforting.
And when it’s time to play, you can enjoy one of Kauai’s largest single pools, where you can fly down waterslides and swim through waterfalls. That’s not all you can do outside the hotel. There is also poolside BBQs for you to try and warm fireplaces for the night.
Take a dip in one of their jacuzzis or try their tranquility pool for some relaxing times. Those on the athletic side can use their sports courts and top of the line fitness center.
You can also visit the Koloa Landing Spa for different types of spa treatments. They have spa packages you can choose from if you’re up for it.
Be sure to venture beyond your villa to Kukui’ula Village, a brief stroll away. You can lose yourself in the diverse array of boutiques and art galleries or indulge your taste buds with over a dozen restaurants catering to your every culinary whim.
You can even find a weekly local farmer’s market to get a taste of some real, local products. Read our review of the Koloa Landing Resort.
Enjoy the breathtaking beauty of Kauai’s sunny south shore at the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa.
This beachside resort not only offers one of the best luaus in Kauai but also treats your taste buds to a culinary adventure with five dining options. Savor steaks and fresh seafood at an open-air restaurant or relish casual dining poolside.
Looking for something more exclusive? Indulge in private dining on your own personal lanai. For a truly unique experience, grab dinner at the Tidepools Restaurant, where you’ll find thatched-roof bungalows at the base of a waterfall.
If you’re looking for something more relaxing, unwind with soothing massages at the resort’s Anara Spa. It’s also quite well-known for its unique lava showers. It’s also one of the best Kauai hotels for families with its kid-friendly activities at its special Camp Hyatt.
You can try a round of golf with the course right next door to the resort. Guests can play tennis or explore the beautiful green gardens, where the freshest produce is produced for the resort’s restaurants.
You can discover a myriad of attractions ranging from museums and botanical gardens to shopping and Mother Nature’s finest offerings. In our experience, the nearby beach might have some rough waters. However, one of the hotel’s unique attractions is a huge saltwater lagoon.
Don’t worry about organizing any of these outings since the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort concierge staff can gladly help plan your perfect island vacation.
If you’re looking for a gorgeous hotel right by the oceanfront, you’ll want to check out The ISO Mokihana. It’s one of the more affordable hotels in Kauai.
This place is located along a private beach and it’s one of the newest boutique hotels on the island. Boasting ocean view rooms, fantastic facilities, and a great location, it’s undoubtedly one of the best hotels on Kauai.
Regarding the facilities, you’ll benefit from an ocean-view swimming pool, an on-site restaurant called the Bull Shed, and various fun activities. Your meals are often accompanied by live entertainment and cocktails at the fancy restaurant.
You’re also in an excellent area for hiking nearby trails, catching waves while surfing, and trying morning yoga! This is due to the hotel’s convenient location within the town of Kapaʻa on Kauai’s East coast.
You’re also just a 10-minute drive from Wailua River State Park, Kālepa Forest Reserve, and Lydgate Beach Park.
The suites at The ISO Mokihana are something worth talking about as they’re spacious and decorated beautifully. Many offer a balcony and stunning sea views, while some also feature a private kitchenette.
Hanalei Bay Resort is located in the luxurious area of Princeville, known for its hiking trails, scenic beaches, and extensive amenities.
Plenty of extraordinary destinations within walking distance include the iconic Queen’s Bath, Sealodge Beach, and Hanalei Valley Lookout.
However, it’s not just the north shore area it’s found in that will draw you to this hotel. The Hanalei Bay Resort is a luxury hotel with both condos and private vacation rentals available.
No matter whether you’re a couple celebrating a honeymoon or a family bringing children along, this hotel can accommodate any kind of traveler.
The facilities feature a lagoon pool and swimming pool, a fitness center, and a fire pit for your late nights. The Happy Talk Bar & Lounge offers casual dining and live entertainment for your enjoyment.
There are also tennis courts and a beach area, with the latter being shared with another hotel. If you’re in the mood for some activities, try their hula lessons, yoga classes, and tennis clinics.
While staying here, you can find a variety of plant species in their tropical gardens.
Thanks to its location in Lihue, The Royal Sonesta Kaua’i Resort is surrounded by a tropical paradise. You’re just a 5-minute drive from the island’s primary airport, Lihue Airport, so you’ll have no problems getting to your hotel after arriving in Kauai.
Nearby, you can find the popular attractions of Ninini Point Lighthouse, the Kauaʻi Museum, and Kalapaki Beach, so you won’t run out of things to do while visiting Kauai. There are many attractions and activities in Lihue too.
Not only that, but the Ocean Course at Hokuala is just a 5-minute walk away if you fancy a game of golf.
If you prefer to relax, take advantage of the biggest one-level pool in Hawaii with easy access to the beach and beachside spa treatments. You won’t find this type of spa in the mainland USA.
The resort has four restaurants with Cafe Portofino, Duke’s Kauai, Aupaka Terrace, and Kukui’s on Kalapaki Beach, and each one has something special and different to offer. They serve everything from Italian, American, and Hawaiian cuisine and are some of the best places to eat in all of Kauai.
Once you take a look at the rooms, it’s hard to look away as they’re modern, spacious, and offer plenty of modern amenities. Each offers TVs, refrigerators, Hawaiian decor, and private balconies. Many of them also offer breathtaking ocean views!
The Marriott’s Kaua’i Beach Club is another hotel located in Lihue with quick access to many natural attractions. The hotel shares some of its grounds with The Royal Sonesta Kaua’i Resort Lihue.
A stay here means you are steps away from the beautiful Kalapaki Beach and the views are jaw-dropping, especially from the outdoor swimming pool. Try your hand at golf at their on-site golf course.
The facilities are extensive, boasting whirlpool hot tubs, a fitness center, an on-site spa, and a hair salon. For your convenience, there’s also a store at the hotel where you can grab a few things for your trip that you may have forgotten to pack.
Another reason to stay at Marriott’s Kaua’i Beach Club is that they offer snorkeling and scuba diving experiences. There are even children’s activities available if you’re looking for some alone time without the kids.
When it comes to food choices, it’s worth trying their Toro Tei sushi bar. More seafood options are provided at Duke’s restaurant.
With so much to offer, it’s no surprise this is one of Kauai’s best hotels, according to the many other travelers we’ve talked to!
For those who’d prefer somewhere a bit more secluded, keep the Waimea Plantation Cottages in your plans. These cottages are set upon 43 acres of land in the town of Waimea on the island’s West coast.
Its unique location means you’re within a 30-minute drive of several things to see and do. This includes visiting the Waimea Canyon, one of the most popular landscapes in Kauai, and you also got plenty of lookout points.
You stay in a unique plantation heritage home that sleeps between 2-6 people. There are 59 of these cottages on-site, some dating back to the 1880s.
Many of the accommodations offer ocean views, but even if you stay in one that doesn’t, you can still check out the awesome oceanfront pool for the same sights. There’s also a private beach here and the Salt Pond Beach is also close by.
Better yet, Waimea Plantation Cottages is home to Chicken In A Barrel BBQ & Bar which is known for its local delicacies and tasty BBQ food. You can also just relax on one of the many hammocks located around the place.
The Whalers Cove Oceanfront Resort has quite the reputation among the many travelers that visit Kauai.
It’s a gorgeous luxury hotel that’s situated in the Poipu area and close to Kukui’ula Village. You can visit Poʻipū Beach Park, Shaka Zipline Kauai, and Baby Beach for a fun beach day.
It boasts an oceanfront location with sea views, fully-equipped suites, and a fantastic location around the many attractions in Kauai. The outdoor swimming pool shares the same attractive views.
You can have your pick of various condos ranging from 1 to 4 bedrooms. Each comes equipped with a full kitchen, private balcony, tropical plants, and large windows to see the outdoors.
Since all suites are fully-equipped, there’s no restaurant on-site. However, there are plenty of awesome restaurants, like the Beach House Restaurant and Keoki’s Paradise which serve traditional Hawaiian meals.