The only rivers that you can boat on in all of Hawaii are found on Kauai – and one of the longest and most awesome ones is the Wailua River. It’s perfect for anyone who wants to get out on the river during their Hawaii vacation.
The Wailua River is 20 miles of calm and winding water through some of Kauai’s lushest and most beautiful jungle valley. You can kayak or boat tours are available as well. Along the way, you will get to see amazing scenery, including waterfalls, stunning mountain views, and the magical Fern Grotto, which is a lava rock cave hidden behind magnificent fern fronds. The Fern Grotto is actually a natural amphitheater with amazing acoustics, and it’s quite common to get to hear music played by local musicians while on your Wailua River journey. You’ll also meander past 7 ancient Hawaiian temple sites as well as a Hollywood film location or two. The trip truly is steeped in adventure, mystery, and romance.
If you take a boat tour, you’ll get the benefit of an experienced and informative guide while visiting the Wailua River. Many tours also include brief nature walks as well as up-close-and-personal trips to the Fern Grotto. If getting on the water doesn’t appeal to you at all, you can even see many spots along the Wailua River from your car.
The river’s source is Mount Wai’ale’ale, in the center of Kauai. Mount Wai’ale’ale has an altitude of 5,148 feet and is one of the wettest locations in the entire world, which is how it’s able to feed the Wailua River. “Wailua” means “spirit” in Hawaiian, and we are pretty confident that you will be filled with the Hawaiian spirit of aloha while spending time on the Wailua River. Have fun!
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