This section provides driving tips and maps.
Expected Driving Times From the Condo
Wailua Bay View is in the perfect location to explore the island. Old Kapa'a town with its quaint shops, restaurants and food trucks is 5 minutes away. Hanalei is a gorgeous 45 minute drive north. It takes another 15 minutes to go from Hanalei all the way north to where Kuhio highway ends at Ke’e Beach. This is where the famous Na Pali Coastline begins. Lihue is a 10 minute drive south. Poipu on the South Shore is a 35 minute drive. Polihale Beach on the West Shore of Kauai is about an hour away.
The East Shore is a great place to stay. Most Kauai residents live in Kapa'a. With more local residents in the Kapa’a area, it seems less touristy and has a great local feel. The East Shore has become a hot spot with new restaurants and nightlife. Several bars and restaurants have live music most evenings.
Leaving the Condo
To go North or South on Kuhio highway, take a right turn out of the condo (Papaloa Road) and then take your first left (Lanikai Street). Go down the short street then turn right or left on Kuhio highway. When turning left, there is a lane for merging. You can pull into this lane and wait for someone to let you in. When coming back to the condo from the North, turn left at Lanakai also. The second map below shows the left turn merge lane on Kuhio Highway.
If you go North on Kuhio highway you will be in old Kapa’a town. It has many nice local shops and restaurants. It’s fun to walk around here. During rush hour, traffic backs up here. To save time you can take the Kapa’a Bypass around Kapa’a when traveling to or from the North Shore. The Kapa'a Bypass is a pretty drive in the countryside. When you get to the roundabout going North, take your first right turn to get back to Kuhio Highway. When driving South enter the Kapa'a Bypass farther north as shown in the following map.
From Kapa’a south through Lihue (Airport) Kuhio highway is a 3 lane road – two lanes going north and 1 lane going south. During morning rush hour, it is changed to 2 lanes south and 1 lane north.
This is called Contra Flow. Contra Flow is in place if you see lines of orange traffic cones. The cones create turn lanes where needed. Be alert.
One Lane Bridges
On Kuhio Highway North of Princeville, there are some one lane bridges. You will see signs before each bridge. Be prepared to stop if another car is coming over the bridge. If no cars are on the other side, just proceed across the bridge. When cars are waiting to cross the bridge on each side, local custom is to have a maximum of 5 – 7 cars pass over a bridge before allowing the other side to cross.