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Canyon Trail to Waipo’o Falls- Big Adventures and Big Views


After a particularly long week at the office I was so ready for the weekend. My family was heading to the west side to stay in one of Koke’e State Park’s cabins for a few days. We were going off the grid which meant three days of no work emails, no mindless Instagram scrolling, and no distraction. I was pumped!

Our tribe decided that we were going to be “nature people” for the day and go on a hike. Our group of six rounded out to my 50-something parents, my siblings, and 10 year old niece. My mom (bless her heart) is not a hiker and she is not shy about telling you that. We we’re low-key surprised that she was going to come with us, but even she had a great time. The hike is rated easy/moderate, but I think that depends on which of my family members you asked. 😉

The trail was muddy in spots, because it rained a good bit the day before. Watch where you step, as the branches and roots you’ll walk over will take no prisoners. This is not the time to wear those cute new slippahs you brought on your vacation! Make sure to wear hiking boots or tennis shoes.

The first leg of the journey is through thick jungle and therefore, is well-shaded. This is one of my favorite parts of the hike. I tried to remind myself to “be present” and I urge you to do the same. Smell the Kahili Ginger, see the different birds in flight, and dare to munch on the strawberry guava that grows so abundantly (toss the shell and thank me later.) These small details are easily some of the best parts of this 4-mile journey!

We followed the signs toward Waipo’o Falls and soon enough we reached the rim of the canyon. Get out your camera. Trust me, this photo-op is a 10/10. It will be tempting to flirt with the edge to get a sick photo for the ‘gram, but pleeeease don’t to get too close. I don’t want to read about you in the paper next week.

The mind-blowing views of the canyon make it easy to understand why the Waimea Canyon is called the Grand Canyon of the Pacific. After a short walk and a couple obstacles, in the form of boulders, you’ll be greeted by an open ridge offering breathtaking panoramic views of the canyon and ocean. Fun fact: You may also get cell service here! Just ask my dad who was stoked to catch the last few minutes of the Buccaneers/Raiders game.

Keep on the trail and you’ll come to a picturesque waterfall and pool. It’s the perfect spot for travelers who are eager to re-energize with a quick and refreshing swim. Ok, this is it! This is what you sweated and walked for! Just kidding.

Carefully go down the short drop to the right. There you’ll find yourself standing at the top of an incredible waterfall that plunges 800 ft down into the canyon. Look around, take it in, and enjoy your feeling of accomplishment. You made it! Not kidding this time. Take photos, play in the stream, or have a snack. You do you. We splashed each other, counted crawfish, and rationed out the two granola bars we managed to pack. (Note to self: bring more snacks next time). After about 20 minutes at the top of the falls, we were ready to turn around and complete the journey back.

After you tackle that short uphill back to the top of the rim, I urge you to turn around. Breathe it all in (pant if you want) and take a mental picture of this moment. It’s not a scene you’ll soon forget!

If you are searching for a little challenge with a big reward, Waipo’o Falls Trail delivers.

Aloha and happy adventuring!


Directions: Journey up Highway 550 and drive north into Koke’e State Park. On your right you will pass the Waimea Canyon lookout offering stunning views of the canyon and some of your first glimpses of the magnificent canyon. Continue about 4 miles and you will come to the Pu’uhina’hina lookout. To the right there is a dirt road that will take you to the trailhead to begin your hike. If your vehicle has 4wd capability you can head down this road. Follow the signage until you reach the parking area. The trailhead and start of your adventure will be to the left! (Our truck was not up for the off-roading required for the dirt road. We parked along the main road and enjoyed the .75 mile walk, or “warm up,” to the trailhead.)

Written by guest blogger and Kauai Resident, Bri Checkley.

As 4th of July approaches, it is time to celebrate the amazing freedoms we have in this country. We do this by getting together with friends and family, enjoying great food, and of course, taking in some awesome fireworks. Any 4th of July on Kauai celebration without a culminating fireworks show leaves a bit left to be desired, but you can be sure this will not be the case when you are vacationing in the Princeville area on the island of Kauai. There are endless celebrations throughout this time that feature amazing fireworks shows over the Pacific Ocean. Here are a few of the best fireworks displays and parties happening around Princeville this year.

Kauai Hospice Concert in the Sky

From 3 pm to 10 pm on Wednesday, July 4th, 2018, visitors can enjoy Kauai’s biggest and most fun celebration and fireworks display. The festivities begin with great food, games for the kids, and amazing live music performances. After having a blast throughout the day, you can hunker down and enjoy an amazing fireworks display that happens all around you. It is in the town of Lihue at the Vidinha Memorial Stadium on the east side of the island, so it requires a bit of a drive from Princeville, but it is always worth it!

Freedom Fest

At the Pacific Missile Range in western Kauai, there will be a free event celebrating 4th of July on Kauai the likes of which you will find nowhere else. They pull out all the stops for this celebration with live music, food, craft vendors, games, and even carnival rides. But the party really gets going with an amazing fireworks show over the Pacific Ocean. Get there through the south entrance just off of Kaumuali’i Highway, mile marker 29.

Find the Perfect Place to Stay During 4th of July on Kauai

Of course, a trip to Hawaii always calls for some celebrations of your own, and you can find the perfect place to relax, socialize, and party it up at one of the amazing vacation rentals in the Princeville area. There are many options, but only one when it comes to the best way to find the right one for you: the premiere vacation rental firm in the area, Princeville Vacation Rentals. We provide the greatest selection of homes throughout Princeville. Many of these homes are characterized by spacious floor plans, luxurious amenities, and of course, great views of the beauty that surrounds. Book with us today and find the perfect vacation rental for you and your group!

Princeville is the northernmost community on the northernmost Hawaiian Island, Kauai. It sits on some of the most fertile land in the world that results in some of the most incredible beauty in the world, but also in some of the most sustainable farming anywhere. As these islands are so remote, the residents pride themselves on producing local products that allow the community to survive and thrive. This spirit is on full display throughout the week when different farmers’ markets speckle the Princeville area. These Princeville farmers’ markets are sure to be some of the most unique you have ever experienced.

Hanalei Farmers’ Market

This amazing farmers’ market takes place every Saturday from 9:30 am to noon on the beautiful grounds of Hanalei’s Community Center. As you would expect from Hawaii, this farmers’ market provides an incredible array of the freshest and most flavorful fruits you have ever tried from the mangos to the papaya. There are specialty baked goods, cheeses, natural supplements, and so much more. And of course, it would not be a Hawaiian farmers’ market without an assortment of chocolate covered goodies. This market in particular is renowned for its chocolate covered bananas. This is provided by 23 farm vendors, but there are also many amazing works of art provided by 25 local artisans.

Princeville Farmers’ Markets: Waipa Farmers’ Market

The town of Waipa is just a few miles down the road from Princeville and it is where you will find the freshest local goods in Kauai on Tuesdays starting at 2 pm. Among the farm fresh vegetables, you will also find flowers, art, and prepared foods. Everything is sourced locally of course, so you can really come to experience the classic flavors of the island here. Beyond amazing food and art, this farmers’ market provides incredible insight into the locals of the island, which is one of the best ways to spend time on vacation in a place as unique as Princeville.

Wonderful Accommodations in Princeville

When you have narrowed down a few great activities to take advantage of while in Princeville, it is time to turn your attention towards finding the perfect place to stay. Lucky for you, Princeville Vacation Rentals is a company that is taking all the leg work and uncertainty out of this task. We do this by providing the highest quality and most diverse listings in the community. Finding the perfect place to call home is as simple as giving us a call today!

Regardless of when you have visited Kauai, odds are you found it to be a beautiful time of year on this famous Hawaiian island. This is because there is truly no bad time to visit. You will always find stunning beauty, a vibrant community, and water that is ready for some swimming. However, the holiday season is certainly one of the best times to visit the island. Here are a few reasons that you will love Kauai during the holidays. Thousands of people choose to spend their holidays in Kauai. Here’s why!

Not Your Typical Holiday Weather

If you are looking for a white Christmas, you will not begin your search on Kauai. This is because the winter weather here is unlike that which you will find anywhere else. Near Princeville, you can expect days in the low 80s and nights in mid 60s. Not exactly a frigid winter, but always an absolute pleasure to be in.

The Waves

This is not exactly holiday related, but it certainly is a significant factor in a trip to Hawaii. You can find good waves on Kauai throughout the year, but the winter—and December in particular—is when the best waves break on these shores. This makes the holiday season the very best time to visit for those who love surfing, boogie boarding, body boarding, and any other wave-related pursuit. Kauai’s North Shore can experience waves of 20 feet and higher. When these waves roll in, it is best to find a seat on the sand and watch the professional surfers tackle these monsters.

Your Favorite Holidays with a Kauai Twist

The Princeville area and Kauai in general accept thousands of visitors throughout the holiday season. Because of this, many holiday traditions have found their way onto the island. You can enjoy lit up celebrations of your favorite holidays like Christmas, Hanukkah, and more. You can expect to find many things that you would find around your home during the holidays, with the added excitement of professional hula dancers. A good luau is always in order in Princeville. A great way to find out about local events is by checking the events section of the local newspaper when you arrive. There are sure to be some amazing festivities going on throughout the island.

Spend Your Best Holidays in Kauai with Princeville Vacation Rentals

Thanks to the sunny days, relaxed atmosphere and finger-licking-good food, holidays in Kauai are unforgettable! Wherever you go on the island, you will find holiday festivities in some form or another. You may be in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, but you will not feel so far from home when you find your favorite holiday celebrations with a new twist. If you are looking to plan a holiday vacation, make it a Kauai vacation! Stay in one of our comfy and spacious vacation rental and enjoy the island to the maximum!