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Kauai’s Sunny South Side

The Spouting Horn, Poipu KauaiThe sunny South Shore of Kaua‘i is home to historic Old Koloa Town and the resort area of Po‘ipu. This is an area of both sporting activity and historic attractions. The Koloa Heritage Trail is a 14-stop, self-guided 10-mile tour of the Koloa and Po‘ipu area’s most important cultural, historical and geological sites, with descriptive plaques that explain each spot’s significance so you can learn more about Kaua‘i’s history.

Koloa was home to Hawai‘i’s first commercial sugar plantation, started in 1835 by Ladd and Co. on a few acres of land leased from the Hawaiian Kingdom. In the mid-1800s, sugar replaced whaling to become the principal industry of Hawai‘i. As a result of the sugar boom, approximately 350,000 immigrants from around the world came to Hawai‘i to work in the sugar plantations.

Although tourism supplanted sugar as Hawai‘i’s major industry — Kaua‘i’s last sugar mill closed in 2010, but most were closed by the late 1990s — the legacy of the era lives on in the unique ethnic diversity of Hawai‘i’s people today.