The Best Beach Hotels in Kauai, Hawaii

Hit the beach on a trip to Kauai with a stay at one the islands top beach hotels
Hit the beach on a trip to Kauai with a stay at one the island's top beach hotels | © M Swiet Productions / Getty Images
Siobhan Grogan

Known as the Garden Island for its luscious green rainforests and state parks, the Hawaiian island of Kauai also offers a show-stopping coastline that curves around jagged mountains and dense jungle. Its turquoise waters, hidden bays and stretches of powder-soft sand make the island paradise for families, honeymooners and water babies keen to sample surfing and snorkeling. Choose one of these beach hotels to maximize time on the sand in the Aloha State.

1. Ko’a Kea Hotel and Resort

Boutique Hotel, Resort, Luxury

Ko’a Kea Hotel & Resort. Upscale resort room with a raised bed, desk and chair at the end of it, framed ammonite picture above it and a balcony outiside.
Courtesy of Ko’a Kea Hotel and Resort / Expedia.com

You’re only ever moments from Poipu Beach at the Ko’a Kea resort, located on the sunniest side of the island. The hotel offers an oceanfront pool, a spa, a yoga and fitness studio and an on-site watersports hut, where guests can try everything from surfing to a traditional Hawaiian outrigger canoe. Watch the sun sink into the waves each evening by a beach bonfire or toast the nightly lighting of tiki torches with a rum-soaked Hawaiian Mai Tai.

2. Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa

Resort, Chain Hotel

Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa
Courtesy of Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa / Expedia.com

Families will never want to leave this resort on the island’s sunny south shore at Poipu. The pools alone will wow kids of all ages with a lava rock-lined lazy river, waterfalls, a 150ft (45m) water slide, water volleyball area and saltwater lagoon. Back on dry land, there’s a fantastic kids’ club offering activities including shell bracelet-making, hula lessons and movie nights, while the vintage surf shack dishes up irresistible fish tacos and ice cream.

3. Koloa Landing Resort at Poipu, Autograph Collection

Resort, Chain Hotel

Koloa Landing Resort at Poipu, Autograph Collection. Hotel room balcony overlooking swimming pool and lush vegetation.
Courtesy of Koloa Landing Resort at Poipu, Autograph Collection / Expedia.com

Idyllic Poipu Beach may be on the doorstep – but it’s still not easy to leave the jaw-dropping pool at this enormous resort. Voted the best pool in America, the 350,000-gallon (1.3million-liter) main pool offers a gobsmacking array of waterslides, swim-through waterfalls, poolside fire pits and several jacuzzis. Those wanting even more entertainment can discover a putting green, soccer area, enormous spa, complimentary yoga classes and an activity hut offering over 600 island activities and adventures, including helicopter tours and sunrise snorkel sessions.

4. Kauai Shores Hotel

Independent Hotel

Kauai Shores Hotel. Carpeted hotel room with two beds, a desk, a couple of chairs and a balcony.
Courtesy of Kauai Shores Hotel / Expedia.com

It’s all about laid-back island living at this boutique property in Kapa’a. Bright simple rooms have splashes of zingy lime green and a Keurig coffeemaker, while some have pool or ocean views. There are two swimming pools, a hot tub, bikes to rent and daily outdoor yoga on an oceanfront lawn. With your toes in the sand, you can enjoy a meal at the hotel’s very own casual beach club, dishing up island-inspired flat breads, gazpacho, coconut shrimp and ahi burgers.

5. Hilton Garden Inn Kauai Wailua Bay

Chain Hotel

Hilton Garden Inn Kauai Wailua Bay. Central bed with wooden headboard facing a flatscreen TV and a floor-to-ceiling window overlooking the beach.
Courtesy of Hilton Garden Inn Kauai Wailua Bay / Booking.com

Adjacent to the family-friendly Lydgate Beach Park with its protected swimming beach, playground and picnic areas, this Hilton hotel is a great choice for those traveling with children. There are shops and restaurants nearby, plus a 24-hour mini market, car rental desk and coin laundry on-site. Guests can also dine in style at two hotel restaurants, including the retro-inspired tiki restaurant Mamahune’s where handcrafted cocktails and contemporary Hawaiian dishes come with picture-perfect views of Kauai’s Wailua Bay.

6. Kauai Beach Resort

Independent Hotel, Resort

Kauai Beach Resort. Close-up of hotel room chair with cushion, lamp and background view of outdoor swimming pool.
Courtesy of Kauai Beach Resort / Expedia.com

Follow a tree-lined drive leading straight to the ocean to find this blissful retreat, where 25 acres (10ha) of tropical gardens spill into the sea. How much you do then is up to you. Laze by one of four pools – three with their very own waterfalls – or book a massage in the oceanfront cabanas. Those with itchy feet can ditch the chaise lounge and join an array of activities including paper flower-making, hula classes, jewelry-making or lessons on the ukulele.

7. Aston Islander on the Beach

Hotel

Aston Islander on the Beach. Corner of hotel complex with garden area. In the background are some hills overlooking some choppy water.
Courtesy of Aston Islander on the Beach / Expedia.com

Pretend you have your very own beachfront property at this relaxed resort, set in six acres (2.5ha) of gardens on the Coconut Coast. Individually owned rooms all feature a private lanai (balcony) with either garden or ocean views, while communal amenities include a pool with bar, on-site laundry, barbecue areas and bike rentals. Bonus extras include a daily drinks voucher, complimentary airport transfers and twice-weekly live music with happy hour specials.

8. Kauai Beach Villas

Hotel

Kauai Beach Villas. Open-plan dining room area overlooking an outdoor seating area partially covered by parasols.
Courtesy of Kauai Beach Villas / Expedia.com

It’s easy to explore the rest of the island from these beach villas, just three miles (5km) north of Lihue airport, south of Kapa’a. The East Side’s restaurants and attractions are nearby, and it’s still less than an hour to Princeville on the North Shore. For the days you want to stay closer to home, the resort offers a quiet beach in Lihue, a tennis court, barbecue grills and a pool, while the one- and two-bedroom condos mean you’ll have plenty of space to relax.

Discover more of Kauai by checking out our guide to the best resorts in Kauai, Hawaii, bookable through Culture Trip.

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