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Botanic Beauties of the Garden Island

Hawaii has many spectacular sceneries to offer, varying in climate, from arid regions of Oahu to tropical botanic lushness of Kauai. They are diverse in topographic sites as well, such as volcanoes, canyons, beaches, and caves.

There are many botanical gardens on this archipelago, from Oahu’s Ho’ Omaluhia, Koko Crater, Harold E. Lyon Arboretum, Lili Pukalani, Wahiawa, Waimea Arboretum to Maui’s Kahanu, Kula and more.

So among all these botanical gardens, why does Kauai deserve to be called The Garden Island?

Limahuli Preserve

The Limahuli Garden and Preserve is one of the most biodiverse valleys in these islands. Representing 70 percent of Kauai’s endangered species, Limahuli is home to wonders that can’t be found anywhere else on earth.

Daderot. [CC BY-SA 3.0]

This is not true only of its natural uniqueness but of the cultural as well, for Limahuli Gardens are immersed in Hawaiian and Polynesian culture, preserved through architecture and spiritual sites. This goes even for the foods that can still be found here, treasured by ancient Hawaiian natives.

Limahuli can be appealing for its natural and authentic setting, contrasting those other ornamental gardens. It nevertheless provides us with a half-mile walk through a wild and abundant botanic paradise, preserving about 100 different plants.

Daderot. [CC BY-SA 3.0]

Upon reaching the highest point, you can get a panoramic view that spreads over the valley and terraces below, reaching the coral reefs and crystal clear waters of the Pacific.

Unfortunately, Limahuli Garden is closed to the public at the moment due to historic flooding. You can help recover it by making a donation or visiting one of their other locations to assist the efforts.

Daderot. [CC BY-SA 3.0]

Lawai Garden

Firstly, we need to mention that the headquarters for the National Tropical Botanical Garden is situated in Lawai Garden. Being in charge of four Hawaiian gardens, the NTBG endeavors to help preserve and protect the legacy of native Hawaiian plants through conservation, research, and education.

Daderot. [CC BY-SA 3.0]

NTBG is known for their largest collection of endangered plant species, which includes the native Hawaiian flora, also the largest collection there is. As for the Lawai Garden, it spans 259 acres of garden.

The tour starts near the Spouting Horn blowhole in Poipu, an attraction, especially during the whale watching season. This is something you might want to consider before embarking on this two-and-a-half-hour tour Noah’s Ark of tropical verdure.

Daderot. [CC BY-SA 3.0]

Unlike Allerton Gardens, which are a more cultivated and trim example of estate gardens, the Lawai Garden does not fall back in exquisite plant collection. Coral trees, palms, orchids, heliconias, and other flowering trees, they are all so exotic and intense, that they inspired many filmmakers to shoot their films here. The most notable one being Jurassic Park.

Allerton Garden

Showier then the former two, Allerton Garden is an elegant and thoughtful mix of European architecture and design and the exotic botanic variety of the tropics. This 100-acre garden is steeped in a quiet and profound atmosphere that permeates between pathways, fountains, pools, and sculptures.

Daderot. [CC BY-SA 3.0]

This garden is the architectural masterpiece, created by Allerton and his son, who designed it carefully matching textures, forms, and foliage but careful enough to add to it elements of surprise, incorporating plants they’ve collected on their trips to Ceylon and Caribbean.

From Thanksgiving Garden with a reflecting pool and Italian bronze statues to tropical fruit orchard of Victory Garden, a serene scene of the moss-covered Diana Fountain and dark cascade pools, you can witness the redolent beauty where architecture meets nature.

Daderot. [CC BY-SA 3.0]

You’ll encounter groves of pink and gold heliconias, masses of flowering gingers, and hillsides of frangipani, varying tropical fruits such as pomegranates, lychee, starfruit, dense foliage, and if that isn’t enough, you’ll part with this lush paradise by passing through a rock wall gap embellished with maidenhair fern.

Hawaii’s fourth largest island is the sight of absolute natural wonder formed through centuries. It is a melange of tropical rainforests, meandering rivers, bamboo groves, waterfall cascades, breathtaking canyons, caves, valleys, and beaches.

Daderot. [CC BY-SA 3.0]

There are plenty of other activities you can engage in while enjoying Kauai’s lush nature such as hiking, kayaking, snorkeling you should not miss on. If you’re unsure of how to plan your trip and where to stay, you can better inform yourself at

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