36 Hours in Kauai, Hawaii

2013-12-20

These days, Kauai sits firmly on the tourist radar, an indisputable rival of its famous neighbors, Oahu and Maui. But upon first glance at its unspoiled natural splendor, you’d never know it. A closer look at one of the oldest (geologically speaking) and arguably most beautiful of the major Hawaiian Islands reveals a blossoming culinary scene, a rooted arts community and a smattering of resorts. But thanks to careful regulation (by law, building heights max out at 55 feet) and a certain amount of pushback from residents (in 2007 protesters quickly quashed high-speed ferry service between Oahu and Kauai), most of the island still feels like the world’s most stunning backwater.

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