The Best Time of Year to Go to Kauai

When is the best time to visit Kauai? It all depends on your situation and what you want to get out of Kauai. With the following easy to remember info you shouldn’t have any trouble deciding when the best time is for you and your family to vacation in Kauai.

Kauai’s Busy Tourist Seasons

Kauai has two main tourist seasons. They’re from mid-December through Easter and from mid-June to Labor Day.

The visitor centers are especially crowded in August and during the Christmas holidays. Since there are more tourists at these times there is more demand for rental cars, hotel rooms and various tourist attractions. And with more demand comes… yup, higher prices.

Not only that, but since there are more people, life on the island seems to get busier and more hectic – making it a bit more difficult to slow down and enjoy yourself.

If you’re planning your Kauai vacation during one of these seasons, I strongly recommend using a travel agent. They can help you save money and find great deals. If you don’t want to use a travel agent then just make sure you do some of your own research for packaged deals – discounts on regular rates are usually included.

It’s also a good idea to make your reservations months in advance. And that goes for whether you’re planning your trip for the busy tourist seasons or the off-seasons.

The Off-Seasons (when you’ll get the most out of Kauai)

In my personal opinion, if you want to really explore Kauai and get the most out of your vacation, then go during the off-season.

Better prices, easier to find lodging, fewer people to compete with for prime camping sites, hiking trails aren’t as crowded, it’s calmer and more peaceful – it’s just better, I think.

This is just my personal view, but when I go to an exotic location like Kauai, I want to feel like I and my family or friends are getting to experience something unique – something that no one else gets to experience. Sure, I know millions of people have gone to Kauai and explored all the same places I’m exploring. But, when it’s just you and your group together – that private moment on Kauai belongs to you and nobody else. It’s exclusive.

Consider the Weather

Kauai’s weather is another important factor to consider when planning your vacation.

First of all, whether you travel to Kauai in the summer or the winter, you won’t have to worry too much about the temperature. The average temperature in Kauai is a comfortable 78°. In the hottest and coldest months it usually only moves about 5° or 6°. The water temperatures are also very comfortable ranging between 74° and 80°.

The second thing you should know about Kauai is that it’s very rainy. But, that’s not necessarily a bad thing – I’ll explain that in a moment.

If you want to avoid the rain as much as possible, then the best time to go is during the summer months. During the winter months it can really pour – especially from December to March. At times it can rain hard enough to cause problems such as hiking trails disappearing. And as recently as March 14, 2006 a dam broke in the Kilauea area, due to what seemed like a never-ending down pour. The dam released over 300 million gallons of water down into a valley, destroying homes and killing seven people.

Now I’m not telling you this to scare you. The truth is a dam breaking from too much rain is not the norm. In fact that’s the only time I’ve ever heard of something like that happening in Kauai. The point is, in Kauai it rains a lot – especially in the winter.

One thing to remember about Kauai’s frequent showers is that most of the storms hit the northeast side of the island. Which means all it usually takes is a quick drive to the west or south side of the island to escape the rain.

The Good Thing About All That Rain

A lot of rain can actually be a good thing when you’re on the Garden Isle. If you’re the type of person that wants to hike around Kauai in search of its beautiful waterfalls, then winter is probably the best time for you to go. All that rain means big, gorgeous, flowing waterfalls.

In Summary…

  • Avoid the tourist seasons from mid-December to Easter and from mid-June to Labor Day, if possible.
  • If you must go during the tourist seasons (like most people) then hunt around for packaged deals or use a travel agent – you’ll save $$$.
  • It rains a lot in Kauai – If that concerns you then go during the summer months when it rains the least.
  • If you don’t mind the rain and love waterfalls then go during the winter months for the best waterfall experience.


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