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Article Source: Copyright © 2012 by Fodor’s Travel, a division of Random House Inc. All rights reserved.
If you only drive around Kauai in your rental car, you will not see all of Kauai. There is truly only one way to see it all, and that's by air. Helicopter tours are the favorite way to get a bird's-eye view of Kauai—they fly at lower altitudes, hover above waterfalls, and wiggle their way into areas that a fixed-wing aircraft cannot. That said, if you've already tried the helitour, how about piloting a microlight? Or flying in the open cockpit of a biplane—à la the Red Baron?
Verdant valleys, epic cliffs, plunging waterfalls, and majestic canyons are just a few of the features that you'll find on Kauai. You might almost get used to the stunning green mountains that jut out of the land as you drive from place to place—almost. There are countless places to stop and take in the view; here are some of our favorites. Just don't forget a camera.
Some things defy words, and the Napali Coast is one of them. Besides, beautiful, verdant, spectacular, and amazing lose their meaning after repeated usage, so forget trying to think of words to describe it, but don't forget to experience Kauai's remote, northwest coastline any which way—by air, water, or trail, preferably all three.
Local photos and informational computers with touch screens bring the island's history and attractions to life at the West Kauai Vistor and Technology Center. Weekly events include lei making, a walking tour, and a crafts fair. Call for a schedule. www.wkbpa.org. COST: Free. OPEN: Weekdays 9:30--4.
Designated a National Historic Landmark, this little church—affiliated with the United Church of Christ—doesn't go unnoticed right alongside Route 560 in downtown Hanalei, and its doors are often wide open (from 9 to 5, give or take) inviting inquisitive visitors in for a look around. Like the Waioli Mission House next door, it's an exquisite representation of New England architecture crossed with Hawaiian thatched buildings. During Hurricane Iniki's visit in 1992, which brought sustained winds of 160 mph and wind gusts up to 220 mph, this little church was lifted off its foundation but, thankfully, lovingly restored. Services are held at 10 am on Sunday with many hymns sung in Hawaiian. www.hanaleichurch.org.
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