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Best Beach Bars on Kauai Island for Nightlife and Fun



A refreshing cocktail on the beach is a delight at any time of day during a Hawaiian vacation. Whether it's a mai tai on the beach at noon, or a martini while watching the sunset on the ocean, beach bars are the best when it comes to cocktail time. Thanks to Kauai's abundance of gorgeous white sand beaches, there's plenty of beach bars to enjoy the sun, sand and surf while sipping on a cocktail or a local beer.

At Duke's Canoe Club, take advantage of the place's beachside locale and open-air ambiance. It's a great place to hang out with friends on its own or either before or after dinner upstairs. On weekends, local performers entertain guests with terrific Hawaiian music, and the place comes alive with folks grooving, dancing, and chatting.

As Kauaui's newest foray into beachside nightlife, RumFire Poipu Beach is a contemporary bar and restaurant experience with amazing views of the resort's Ocean Courtyard, Poipu Beach and the Pacific Ocean. Offering nearly 180-degree ocean views from all of its 240 seats, RumFire is Kauai's newest hot spot for locals and visitors alike.

Hip, gleaming Bar Acuda is a chef-run business that has taken the island by storm. Intent on creating stylish atmosphere and scrumptious food, the North Shore place is a great destination for dinner and drinks after rolling in off the gorgeous beaches of Hanalei.

Whether visitors are looking for a casual or upscale beach bar, it can be found on this list.


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Bar Acuda Tapas & Wine
Photo courtesy of tanksalot


Hip, gleaming Bar Acuda is a chef-run business that has taken the island by storm. Intent on creating stylish atmosphere and scrumptious food, the North Shore place is a great destination for dinner and drinks with friends or with a romantic interest. Diligently searching out top ingredients, chef Jim Moffat crafts them into dishes like lobster-stuffed squid, roast chicken panzanella, and slow-braised beef short ribs. A carefully chosen wine list highlights vintages from western Europe and the western US, and a fantastic social scene is part and parcel of the goings-on. Note that the bar is closed on Mondays. This is by far one of the best spots for a groups of friends to hand out at night.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: This contemporary tapas bar serves up delicious drinks to a hip crowd, right in Hanalei.

Jade's expert tip: They're only open for dinner, so plan accordingly.

Read more about Bar Acuda Tapas & Wine →


Tahiti Nui
Photo courtesy of the nui


This colorful, relaxed place provides a healthy dose of local style and an authentic taste of traditional Kauai. The comfortable hangout welcomes folks craving homestyle sustenance, as well as those who come to enjoy a tropical drink and great entertainment. Every night, there's some sort of activity, be it karaoke performances, bands playing local tunes, or impromptu dancing. Fun-loving patrons and a casual ambiance guarantee its appeal in the eyes of North Shore natives and visitors alike. This is one of those tried and true local spots where residents have been flocking to forever. It's definitely a local watering hole.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: Tahiti Nui is where the locals go for a fun night in a Polynesian themed dive bar. Strong drinks, live music, good times.

Jade's expert tip: Go casual for a night out here.

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Tradewinds


A carefree, party atmosphere awaits at Tradewinds. Daily drink specials keep spirits lively, as does a lineup of local bands performing blues, bluegrass, rock, and Hawaiian music. They typically play on Fridays and during special events. Karaoke is also wildly popular, and the charismatic director will help you select one of over 4,500 songs to bring the house down. No food is served, but patrons can have food delivered to the bar from local restaurants should they get hungry. This is one of the more party oriented spots on Kauai, and it's a good place to let loose and dance the night away.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: Tradewinds offers drinks only - food can be delivered - as well as karaoke, live music, and dancing.

Jade's expert tip: Try one of the daily drink specials.

Read more about Tradewinds →


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RumFire Poipu Beach
Photo courtesy of juantiagues


Located inside of the Sheraton Poipu, RumFire Poipu Beach is a contemporary bar and restaurant experience with amazing views of the resort's Ocean Courtyard, Poipu Beach and the Pacific Ocean. As the newest addition to Kauai, and it's the sister of the original RumFire in Waikiki on Oahu. Offering nearly 180-degree ocean views from all of its 240 seats, RumFire is Kauai's newest hot spot for locals and visitors alike. Known for its exotic tropical cocktails, like mai tais, guava and coconut muddled drinks, mango mojitos and lycheetinis, RumFire offers some of the most exciting drinks on the island. Open Tuesday through Saturday, RumFire's menu serves food rooted in Hawaiian cuisine with an international influence that will satisfy and excite any palate.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: The flavor of RumFire's delicious exotic cocktails is matched by the gorgeous views of the Pacific.

Jade's expert tip: Try a Kauai Mai Tai and a Passion Fire.

Read more about RumFire Poipu Beach →




At Lava's inside of the Sheraton Kauai, you can enjoy views of the sunset on Poipu Beach along with handcrafted and unique tropical drinks. Because it's located inside the Sheraton, there's a Sheraton dink of the day that changes daily. Happy hour happens daily from 3 to 5 p.m. and a late night happy hour from 9 to 11 p.m. Located near the resort's Ocean Pool and just steps from the beach, Lava's put's a Hawaiian style twist on the traditional bar and grill. Signature cocktails include the mai tai, lava flow, frozen coco mojito, and the kama'aina mango rita. Evening pupus (appetizers) include light fare such as salads, nachos and a hummus plate.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: It's tough to say what's better at Lava's, the gorgeous ocean view or the refreshing cocktails, but one thing's for sure, it's a lovely place.

Jade's expert tip: There's two happy hours here. One from 3 to 5 p.m. and later from 9 to 11 p.m.

Read more about Lava's on Poipu Beach →


Shipwreck Bar
Photo courtesy of Will Keightley


Located inside of the luxurious Grand Hyatt Resort, Shipwreck Bar is one of those ocean and pool side bars that's perfect for a morning Bloody Mary of afternoon Mai Tais. Guests can charge down the waterslide that's right by the bar, and refuel with a drink for the day. Those that aren't guests at the resort are still welcome to sit at the Shipwreck Bar, sip on a Mai Tai, and watch the sunset over the saltwater lagoon. Shipwreck Bar is basically all about the drinks and closes closes at 5 p.m., so it's a lovely precursor to dinner at one of Poipu's amazing restaurants, or a night out on the town at some of the bars that stay open into the night. There's an abundance of beautiful beaches in Poipu, so stop by the Shipwreck Bar after a day in the sun.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: The Shipwreck Bar is an easy break from Poipu Beach out front, where you can sip tropical cocktails with an ocean view.

Jade's expert tip: Come in for a drink after a day at Poipu Beach, which is right by the resort.

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Stevenson's Library
Photo courtesy of Chris Corwin


Harking back to the days of its namesake – author Robert Louis Stevenson – this refined bar has the feel of a Victorian gentleman's club, thanks to dark woods, upholstered sofas, books, and parlor games. Other diversions include billiards tables, televisions, and a player piano. Single-malt scotches are a specialty, along with cognacs and ports. Best of all, live jazz performers play nightly, regaling patrons with soothing, satisfying strains. There's great ambiance which is unique to the rest of the nightlife on the island. Rather than beach casual, the Library is upscale, classy and high end, and resembles an old school lounge.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: This upscale, refined bar is unique from others on the island, it reflects a Victorian gentleman's club and serves the finest liquors and drinks.

Jade's expert tip: Dress formal for the Library.

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At Captain's Bar, guests sit perched above a lagoon. Views of the ocean highlighted by amazing positioning for the sunset make this place a hit. From mid morning to sunset, this lively bar offers gorgeous views of Keoneloa Bay, refreshing tropical drinks, and a nice selection of salads and wraps, burgers and sandwiches, desserts, and a children's menu. The bar is located at the Grand Hyatt Kauai, which means that it's placed on a beautiful property with other restaurants and activities to enjoy as a hotel guests or a day visitor. Since the resort is nestled among some of Kauai's most beautiful beaches, great shopping, and best restaurants, you can stop at the Captain's Bar for a sunset drink after a day at the beach and before a nice dinner.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: Captain's Bar serves delicious drinks and light fare, as well as gorgeous ocean views.

Jade's expert tip: Stop by Captain's Bar after a day at Poipu Beach out front of the resort.

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Kalapaki Beach
Duke's Barefoot Bar
Photo courtesy of dukes


The bar, like the restaurant at Duke's Canoe Club, takes advantage of the place's beachside locale and open-air ambiance. It's a great place to hang out with friends on its own or either before or after dinner upstairs. On weekends, local performers entertain guests with terrific Hawaiian music, and the place comes alive with folks grooving, dancing, and chatting. If you're enamored of the tropical experience but don't do alcohol, they also offer a menu of virgin drinks, full of island fruits and goodness. You can take a romantic walk on the beach after dancing to cool off and get some privacy.

Recommended for Beach Bars because: Duke's is a Hawaiian staple - cocktails, Hawaiian food, and dancing on the beach.

Jade's expert tip: Aloha Hour is from 4 to 6 p.m. daily.

Read more about Duke's Barefoot Bar →


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Meet Jade Eckardt

Raised on the Big Island of Hawaii, Jade has traveled the world and doesn't intend to stop, yet the Hawaiian Islands are still her favorite place. She spent seven years living on Oahu and...  More About Jade

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