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Finding the perfect vacation rental on Kauai is a huge job, especially since legislation has limited the options in residential areas. If you’re looking for alternate accommodations (not a hotel or a resort), I tend to recommend condos over apartments and houses anyways as it puts less of a burden on local housing demands. But there are so many condos!! How do you pick a good one?
I’ve made recommendations for specific condo units in this post (mostly budget options), but availability, seasonal pricing, or other factors may leave you still needing more options.
In this post, I’m recommending a bunch of condo complexes (also called condo-tels or condo resorts) by area on Kauai that I think are good places to stay. I’ve also got descriptions of each area so you can figure out what part of the island is most appealing to you.
If you’re really struggling with which part of the island to stay on, read this post.
I think the best place to find (and book) Kauai vacation rentals is Vrbo. They’ve been around forever and are probably the most reputable booking platform online (with owners and vacationers alike), which means that you’ll find more quality properties listed on Vrbo than anywhere else online. I used to book more often with Airbnb, but I’ve begun to find that they often don’t have what I’m looking for (especially when I want to book a condo/unit within a resort property). So all of the condo complexes I will be linking to are bookable within Vrbo.
Disclaimer: This is by no means an exhaustive list of every condo complex on Kauai. There are soooooo many, and there likely are some that aren’t on this list that are perfectly good places to stay at. I’ve compiled this list largely based on location, ratings and reviews, and an overall vibe of what I’m looking for in a place to stay.
Princeville (North Shore)
The north shore of Kauai is the most gorgeous place on the planet. It has beautiful beaches and the lush green mountainous landscapes that most people’s Hawaiian dreams are made of. As you might guess, it’s so lush because it rains more here than other parts of the island (especially in the winter). The north shore is home to the charming little surf town of Hanalei and some pretty spectacular luxury accommodations. While it’s stunningly gorgeous, it’s also a bit remote if you’re planning on exploring sites on the south and west sides of the island.
These are some of my favorite condos in the Princeville area:
These are some great budget condo options:
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Poipu (South Side)
Kauai’s south side is the driest and sunniest part of the island, which makes it very popular with tourists. There are plenty of big resorts so you’ll find plenty of shopping and dining options. You’ll also find a nice selection of beaches but expect them to be more crowded than beaches on other parts of the island. The south side is a convenient place from which to explore the west side (Waimea Canyon and Polihole beach) but not so convenient for seeing north shore sites.
These are some luxury/high end condos in Poipu:
Whalers Cove: Find specific condo units here.
Some of my favorite options that balance nice accommodations and location with a good deal:
Here are a few good off beach options:
These are the best budget friendly condos in Poipu:
Kapaa & Wailua (East Side)
The east shore is often referred to as the “coconut coast” and is the most developed part of the island. This is where you’ll find the most reasonably priced accommodations and its central location makes it a convenient location from which to explore the north and south shores. There are of course lovely beaches on the coconut coast (hello, this is Hawaii!) but you won’t find any awe inspiring backdrops as you will on the north shore and the amenities are usually not as convenient as those on the south shore. You’ll find more “local” beaches on the east side.
These condos are located right in the middle of bustling Kapaa town:
These condos are spread out along the coast near Wailua:
All photos in this post are from Vrbo.com listings.
This post has focused on recommending condo complexes (or condo resorts), for recommendations on specific condo units (especially budget ones), see this post.
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