NEWS FLASH: Statewide Car Rental Shortage – Before you book your flights, secure a car rental. In response to COVID and Hawaii’s Travel Restrictions, Hawaii’s Car Rental Agencies sold-off or shipped-off up to 40% of their inventories. So, don’t wait to reserve a car. On Kauai a rental car is a MUST!
Much has changed on island along with island life since COVID arrived to these shores. Some changes were already in the works Pre-COVID and others are new. All seek to better manage island resources for the health and benefit of Kauai’s environment, people and visitor experience. So, whether you are visiting for the first time or are a returning Kauai-lover, please be advised of the following:
Ha’ena State Park/Ke’e Beach – https://dlnr.hawaii.gov/dsp/parks/kauai/haena-state-park/
Should your party be thinking of making a trip to the end of the road, please note that parking restrictions are now in place. You can’t just drive to Ke’e Beach and park. Further, parking permits Sell Out as soon as they are made available. So, I recommend getting shuttle passes. However, parking permits are available for purchase online 2-weeks in advance:
Kilauea Point & Lighthouse – https://www.recreation.gov/ticket/facility/300018
In order to better manage visitation and its impact on wildlife and habitat, visitors must now make a reservation for the Daniel K Inouye Kilauea Point Lighthouse. The passes allow the passholder and up to 3 Adults to enter. Admission is another matter: Adults $10 – Kids Under 15 FREE.
Kaua’i North Shore Shuttle – https://kauainsshuttle.com/shuttlestops/
The North Shore Shuttle, a Hanalei Initiative project, is back up and operational. Since there are only 100 parking spaces at Ha’ena State Park, most visitors must rely on the shuttle if they want to go to any beaches north of Hanalei. The shuttle depot is located at the Makai Golf Course (near the tennis courts) at Lei O’Papa Road.
Street Parking in Princeville
The roads in Princeville are privately owned and maintained. No street parking is allowed unless marked as such. Violators may find their rental vehicles “booted” if left on the street. Note: The Makai Golf Course does sell daily parking passes. It is recommended that you take advantage of this service whether you plan to catch the shuttle for destinations north of Princeville, or just want to hike to Queen’s Bath.
Princeville Resort Closure – https://www.1hotels.com/hanalei-bay
Under NEW ownership, the PV Resort is being transformed into 1 Hotel Hanalei Bay and is expected to open anew in 2022.
North Shore Restaurants – https://www.10best.com/destinations/hawaii/kauai/restaurants/north-shores-best/
Effective 5/6/21 – The County of Kauai has reinstated certain COVID Tier 3 protocols including limitations on gatherings, seating at restaurants (Table Max 6) and more. Please do your homework before you go out.
A good number of restaurant operators, especially beloved Mom & Pops, have closed their doors over the past 12-months. Many of the establishments that are OPEN now require reservations due to the increased demand for seating (which is limited per social distancing requirements). So, please plan ahead and be patient. You are on Island Time.
Tour Operators & Luaus
As of this writing, many tour and luau operators are still in the process of re-opening. Further, most are only running at 50%. So, do not wait to make reservations if you want to enjoy any of these island activities.
ALL persons (five years of age or older) are required to wear a face covering over their nose and mouth when indoors at any place of business. So, show your Aloha Spirit and don a colorful mask.
With Aloha ~ Aunty Tammy