Poʻipu is the most popular vacation spot on the South Shore for good reason: it’s a great deal of fun. There is a lot of sun here (far more than the North Shore), a wide range of easy-access beaches, an excellent hiking trail, a classy new mall, a wide variety of restaurants, and a truly Grand Hyatt. You won’t be alone in enjoying all of this: the coast is blanketed with hotels, condos and vacation homes, making this section of Kauaʻi feel like a vast resort. But it is all done in good taste, with no building taller than a palm tree, and won’t be changing anytime soon. Some enormous new developments that had people worried have all stalled or been put on hold by a wheezing economy.
Alas, there is no town center. The new Kukui’ula shopping village is, however, an attempt to create one from scratch. Inevitably, the result feels somewhat artificial (think Celebration in Orlando) but at the same time, the design is as good as one could reasonably expect, with a pedestrian zone lined by bright and attractive plantation houses, each one unique. Shops here are upmarket and the new dining options are a welcome addition to the area.
Koa Kea Hotel & Resort
Allerton Garden sunset tour
Beach House sunset dinner
Poʻipu Bay Golf Course