It’s no wonder that Kauai’s exceptional beauty has inspired some exceptionally beautiful links. More surprising is the presence of two lovely, inexpensive public courses: the 9-hole Kukuiolono on the South Shore, and the even more impressive 18-hole Wailua Golf Course on the East Side.
Value-seekers who don’t mind occasionally playing next to a Costco and suburban Lihue homes—amid many more panoramas of several soaring green ridges—will appreciate Puakea (www.puakeagolf.com; tel. 808/245-8756), part of AOL founder Steve Case’s Grove Farm portfolio. Greens fees for 18 holes are $99, $59 after 11am, and $35 after 3pm; it’s $35 for 9 holes anytime. It’s centrally located, at 4150 Nuhou St., off Nawiliwili Road, Lihue. (Greens fees in this section include cart rentals unless noted.)
Bargain hunters may also call Stand-by Golf (www.hawaiistandbygolf.com; tel. 888/645-2665) between 7am and 10pm daily for discounted greens fees of up to 30 percent off same-day or future golfing at Kauai Lagoons and Kiahuna golf clubs, described below. Stand-by Golf says it can guarantee same-day tee times, too, for last-minute types.
To play the newest course on the Garden Island, you’ll need to spring for one of the $1,000-plus-a-night Club Cottages and Club Villas at Kukuiula (www.parrishkauai.com/kukuiula; tel. 800/325-5701) or make friends with a member of Kukuiula (www.kukuiula.com; tel. 855/742-0234) with exclusive access to Tom Weiskopf’s rolling 18-hole course through gardens, orchards, and South Shore grasslands. Money can’t buy your way out of dealing with trade winds, wherever you play, so start early for best scores.
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.