You’ve only been at Koloa Landing Resort for a day or two and already you feel like you’ve arrived in paradise. You’re already in love with the tropical breezes, gorgeous Pacific sunrises and lush greenery that surrounds you — and that’s not even mentioning the Mai Tais and fresh pupus you’ve been sampling. But while relaxing in your ocean-view villa, chilling in a poolside cabana and taking a dip in the Best Pool in America can make for an idyllic day — or week — at some point your sense of adventure kicks in and you’re ready to head to downtown Koloa.
Downtown Koloa isn’t the bustling metropolis you might have left behind when you traveled to the island of Kauai. Known as Old Koloa Town, this charming community strikes the perfect balance between bustling buzz and welcoming whimsy to make you feel right at home. The town is small enough to walk just about anywhere, but there’s still lots to capture your attention while you’re there. Here are a few of our favorite things happening in downtown Koloa:
Spectacular Local Shopping
Downtown Koloa exists on land that once housed a large sugar plantation, and the shops that inhabit those former plantation buildings showcase this history. Whether you’re searching for the perfect local Hawaiian art to display in your home or a fun T-shirt to add to your vacation-inspired clothing collection, there are plenty of shops to explore in Old Koloa Town.
Luscious Local Flavors
After exploring Old Koloa Town’s historic buildings and unique shops, you’re probably ready for a bite to eat. Pick up a burger or some shrimp tempura at Sueoka Snack Shop or grab a sampling of Asian street food from Dim ‘N Den Sum, then stop in at Koloa Mill Ice Cream & Coffee Shop for a cup of Hawaiian-style shaved ice or a hot fudge sundae. Kicking back in casual tropical style has never tasted so good.
Koloa’s Monthly Market
If you’re in town on the third Saturday of the month, Waikomo Courtyard in downtown Koloa comes alive with local artisans, food trucks and live music at the Old Koloa Town Market. Held from 4 to 8 p.m. under a canopy of monkeypod trees, this monthly market lets you immerse yourself in Kauai culture and fall in love with island culture all over again.
Stroll Through Old Koloa Town’s History
Take a quick break from shopping and dining and stop in at the Koloa History Center to learn about the sugar plantation that was built here in 1835 and all the changes in the community since that time. Once you’ve whetted your appetite for Hawaiian history, trek the 10-mile Ka Ala Hele Waiwai Ho‘oilina o Koloa trail to discover over a dozen historical sites related to the area’s past and get a feel for what Koloa might have been like over a century ago.
Koloa Plantation Days Festival
When you ask locals for the best time to visit Koloa, most will tell you about their favorite yearly festival. Held annually in July, the Koloa Plantation Days Festival delivers 10 days of excitement and activities focused around the area’s history as the site of Hawaii’s first sugar plantation. Enjoy the parade through downtown, sample local delicacies, catch a multicultural performance and attend the official rodeo games during the festival. If you’re looking for souvenirs to take home, the festival also hosts one of the largest craft fairs with Hawaiian-made products on the island of Kauai.
From shopping in Old Koloa Town to spending time in nature, there’s plenty to do on the South Shore of Kauai. Start planning your Kauai adventure by booking a room at Koloa Landing Resort. Call us directly at (808) 240-6600 to reserve your private villa, or fill out our contact form for more information about our accommodations and amenities.