“You HAVE to take a cruise along the Napali Coast!” That’s what almost everyone told us when we said we were going to Kauai, Hawaii. I’m so glad we listened to them! Otherwise, we would have missed out on some amazing sights!
Choosing a Boat Tour Company to Cruise the Napali Coast
The Napali Coast (also written as Na Pali Coast) lies along the northwestern side of the island of Kauai and the only way you can fully view the green-covered cliffs, ridges, and caves is via boat or helicopter. When asking for recommendations of which charter company to book a Napali Coast boat tour with, the top choice that kept popping up was Capt. Andy’s. So, we decided to give it a try and made our reservation soon after.
Since we did a snorkel tour the last time we were in Hawaii, we decided to book the Star Na Pali Dinner Sunset Sail. According to the gal I talked to on the phone, the sunset tour provided the best lighting for photos. Plus, the menu for this cruise is almost entirely gluten-free (except for the appetizer and dessert). That meant Frans could safely eat the food too! Oh, and in case you were curious, they can make the meal fully vegan as well if you request it ahead of time.
Capt. Andy’s Star Na Pali Dinner Sunset Sail
After we checked in, the staff told us which crew to follow (two boat tours were taking off at the same time) and walked down to the docks. The boat has a “no shoes” policy so we all put our shoes in a storage cabinet before embarking.
Passengers could then sit or stand on the front deck, atop the trampolines, by the tables in the rear, below in the lower dining area, or even up above with the captain. There was plenty of room to move around on-board so no one ever felt stuck in any one area. The ride was smooth for the most part (more about that later) and the crew was super friendly.
Port Allen to the Napali Coast
Talk about beautiful! The scenic landscape was magnificent the entire ride! It was such a treat to see the various beaches, caves, and cliffs. A pod of spinner dolphins even came out to play (as seen in the video above)!
Cruise Vibe & Experience
There was a nice mix of families, seniors, and couples so it wasn’t like a romantic or party cruise at all. In fact, except for that one couple who hogged the prime viewing spot on the boat for most of the trip and were in everyone’s photos, the passengers were all pretty mindful of each other.
It was only as we rounded the island and headed further north that the waters became choppy. Everyone was asked to move toward the back and that’s when Frans started to get seasick. He took motion sickness medicine before we left and was doing fine. But, the bumpy ride combined with not being able to see the horizon was too much for him.
After a short nap, some ginger chews, and a few glasses of ginger ale, he finally started to feel better. The chef did offer to pack up his dinner for later. As the food came out, though, Frans’ appetite returned and was able to eat with us.
Capt. Andy’s Surf & Turf Dinner
Dinner was fantastic! The filet mignon was perfect and the roasted veggies were seasoned just right. We thought the shrimp was a bit overcooked but the rich key lime cheesecake made up for it. Munchkin was not shy about eating up Frans’ portion in addition to her own (it had gluten/wheat so he couldn’t have it anyway).
The sun began to set as we made our way back to the port. The captain even stopped the boat for a bit so we could savor that Hawaiian sunset for a while.
Before long, we arrived at the dock, put our shoes on, and returned to our car. If you park in the unpaved parking lot, I highly advise that you walk on the paved road as much as possible, though. Frans and Munchkin went through the lot straight to the car while I continued on the road to get a few more photos. Sand fleas ate up their legs and they both had itchy, oozy, bright red bite marks that bothered them for the rest of the trip!
If you ever get the opportunity to visit this island, you should definitely look into a Na Pali Coast boat tour with Capt. Andy’s. We’ve had bad experiences with tour companies before and it can really ruin your whole day/night. But, those of the Capt. Andy’s crew were capable, professional, attentive, and went above and beyond to make sure everyone had a good time. You won’t be disappointed!
Seeing the Napali Coast & Capt. Andy’s Boat Tour Company
We had an amazing experience! Being able to see the Na Pali Coast in all its splendor, while enjoying a delectable dinner at sunset, completely upped the awesomeness of our trip. It was a great way to take in the beauty of the Kauai while doing something other than lounging at the beach with the family.
My family and I were hosted on the cruise at no cost for review purposes. All opinions are my own.