“What are the orange scarves for?”, my children quickly asked the guides. “Well kids, we’re about to get very dirty!”
And with that, they let out a squeal and jumped into our four-seater ATV. We had done all the research and heard nothing but good things about Kauai ATV tours and now was our chance to explore the Kauai backcountry by ATV!
Our tour started off just outside of the former Koloa Sugar Mill and plantation. This plantation closed only a few years ago and it was neat to see it there, such a stoic sight among the fields. We were quickly introduced to the sugarcane industry, learning facts about how the industry used to be run on the island and what eventually led to its demise.
Our guide gave us the “all go” signal which meant it was time to hit the pedal to the metal and find the bumpy roads. We were like tiny balls in a pinball machine as we got bumped around while driving over the roots and the holes in the dirt road. “Go faster” the kids squealed as they loved every minute of the drive!
Our first point of interest during our Kauai ATV tour was the Wilcox tunnel. This is the only driveable tunnel in Kauai and we got to stop and learn all about it and take pictures in front of it. The tunnel was built to facilitate the growth of the sugarcane plantation and was dug via pick and axe and compass. Our kids loved turning off the lights and going through the long tunnel in the dark!
World War 2 Bunkers
I can’t tell you where this spot is (top secret, super confidential information only for tour participants) but on our tour we were taken to a World War 2 bunker. These tunnels led deep into the mountains and we were told stories about how the bunkers were created, what type of essentials were stocked in them, as well as some very interesting ghost stories!
Pristine Mountain Waterfall
Our next stop was our main attraction, the pristine waterfall, where you could sit back and relax, or like we did, see who can make the biggest cannonball. (My husband won.) My kids loved jumping next to the waterfall and exploring both of the waterfall pools. My husband enjoyed hanging out under the waterfall where he got a nice combination of a shower and a massage!
We also took tons of pictures of the kids going in the water, doing all sorts of poses and jumps. Trip Tip: Be sure to wear closed-toed shoes that can get wet! You can rent them from the Kauai ATV tour company or bring your own. You can’t go in the waterfall without them!
Let’s get Muddier!
After a snack break and towel off it was time to get muddy again! You may not be able to see me, but I’m behind the wheel and that’s our family getting soaked with water and mud. Everyone was laughing and my littlest never asked again why goggles or scarves were necessary!
Time for T Rex
On the way back from our tour we found ourselves on the set of Jurassic Park, the scene where they were all being chased by dinosaurs! We too were chased by a few dinosaurs on the loose, although these pint-sized creatures were perfect for posing for fun pictures and didn’t threaten to take my children away!
All the action of the day left my son spent… and a nap was in order for him. I guess the sound of the motor and the bumpy roads was the perfect combination to lull him to sleep. Everyone thought it was pretty funny and shared their equal jealousy about being able to take a nap after such a fun adventure!
Are you heading to Kauai? I totally recommend this trip for families! Children must be at least 5 years old in order to participate in this activity, but it’s a great Eco tour and an awesome way to explore the Kauai back country.
If you go be sure to bring:
- Camera (in waterproof case)
- Waterproof close-toed shoes
- Change of clothes
- Any special drinks or snacks required (They provide great ones, but if you have any special requirements, bring your own)
- A sense of adventure and a willingness to learn!