Tourists who are very interested to learn more about the geology, climatology, and ecology of Kauai should visit the Kokee Natural Museum. It is also an important source of information about conditions of trails in the Waimea Canyon as well as the Kokee State Park. A tour of the museum will surely turn out educational in every aspect.
The museum is situated within Kokee State Park, sitting at the top of the accessible Waimea Canyon Road. It is open daily from 10 in the morning until 4 in the afternoon. To provide assistance to tourists, it is open even during public holidays. Admission to the museum is free. However, visitors are encouraged to give to a donation box located at the entrance. Donations are used to fund continuous operations since the museum does not receive any funding from the state.
Part of the attractions offered to visitors is the scenic drive through the breathtaking Waimea Canyon, which is dubbed as the ‘Grand Canyon of the Pacific.’ No one can miss it when getting through the road to the museum.
There are even regular events that are staged to further bolster interest in Kokee Natural Museum. Those include forest workdays and guided hikes. Visitors are advised to come during the months of June to September, when most of the regular events in the museum are held.
Important Exhibits At Koke’e Natural Museum
And how can the museum be complete without the popular exhibits? Those include the following: Woods of the Hawaiian Forest, Hawaiian and Pacific Weather during devastation of hurricane Iniki in September 1992, native and introduced local birds, and different collections of shells. There are also exhibits about the ‘Ascent of Emma,’ which is an account of the talked about royal visit to the region.
There are also informative displays about numerous Hawaiian stone artifacts as well as hunting and fishing as activities in the island. Interactive exhibits are also mounted to provide more information to visitors in a more timely and lively manner.
The Museum Shop
Within the Kokee Natural Museum is the Kokee Museum Shop. Visitors who intend to shop for souvenirs, memorabilia, and other items can find pleasure shopping at the Kokee Mart. Most of the merchandise are not just unique to Kokee and Kauai, those are also one-of-a-kind that can never be possibly found and bought elsewhere.
The Museum Shop features an extensive selection of fine local arts and crafts, Hawaiian books, and very exclusive gifts. Tourists are advised to look closely at Kauai-made objects. The shop is also known for its Emalani and Kokee shirts (available online) and Hui o Laka, which sells hats, awareness, pins, and bracelets.
The Kokee Natural Museum is an ideal place for planning hikes. The museum employs knowledgeable staff and there are volunteers who are always welcoming guests. Those people are oriented and trained to help tourists and vacationers when deciding the places within the area to go to as well the possible conditions and hazards.
Kokee Natural Museum, no matter how quaint it may be, is a good venue to learn more about Kauai’s flora and fauna. An accessibility ramp is available to make going to the museum easier. Children are also welcomed especially because there are now specific sections in the museum that are aimed at engaging kids, who are usually being tagged along by their families.