Fern Grotto Wailua River Cruise

Duration: 1 hour & 20 minutes Location: Wailua
Smith's Fern Grotto Tour

Fern Grotto Wailua River Cruise

The Wailua River is known as “the only navigable river” in all Hawaii. The river’s fresh water pours down from Mt. Wai‘ale‘ale, one of the wettest spots on the planet. Lands along the river were the sacred capital of ancient Kauai and the birthplace of the island’s ali‘i, or royalty.

During the two mile river journey, you’ll hear songs and stories of ancient Hawaii — like the King’s Highway, sacred Mount Kapu, and the First Hau Tree. In addition, guests enjoy learning the hula during a lesson provided by a young hula dancer. Everyone gets into the act during the river cruise!

At the Fern Grotto landing, you’ll enjoy a short nature walk through the rainforest to the lush Fern Grotto.

The Fern Grotto is a geological wonder of Kauai. Ferns grow upside down from the roof of the grotto, which was formed millions of years ago. Native Hawaiian plants and colorful exotic tropical plants provide a rain-forest atmosphere.

Activity Details

Tour Times:

  • 9:30am, 11:00am, 2:00pm & 3:30pm
  • Check in time is 30 minutes prior
  • Duration l hour and 20 minutes

Please Note

  • 72 hour notice of cancellation is required for a refund.
  • There are no timeshare visits required to enjoy our discounts!
  • Call 1-866-897-1637 for additional discounts available for large groups!

Reserve This Tour

Children (2-12)
Infants Under 2 ~ No Charge
Duration: 1 hour & 20 minutes Location: Wailua
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Reviews, Comments, & Questions:

  1. debb says:

    We have a handicapped person who uses a wheelchair and we would like to know about the nature walk and its terrain.

    1. Kaya— Kauai Activity Specialist says:

      Aloha Debb, Mahalo for your inquiry. Once you get to the Fern Grotto the paths are all paved, as long as there is someone to push the wheelchair there is no problem with your party coming along on this tour. Call us toll free at 1-866-897-1637 or fill out the online activity request to get your spaces reserved for this tour. I look forward to hearing from you.


  2. sue freeman says:

    We have a 6 wk old baby, can we bring her on this?

    1. Kaya— Kauai Activity Specialist says:

      Aloha Sue, yes your baby can go on this adventure. Some families like to do the Fern Grotto Cruise and then check in at the Smiths Family Luau right there at the same location. Call me toll free at 1-866-897-1637 or fill out the online form to reserve your spaces today!

  3. Jill Goldwater-Andorra Travel says:

    I have a client who can walk with a cane. She is coming on her honeymoon. She is not good on uneven terrain.
    Will she be able to take this tour? Can you describe the walking part of the trip so I can send her the information?
    Thank you.

    1. Kaya— Kauai Activity Specialist says:

      Aloha Jill! This is a good questions to ask. The walk through the Fern Grotto is up a slight incline & 185 yards from the boat. There are no railings. If she did go on the tour she could stop and go back to the boat at anytime.

  4. joy says:

    We have a double jogging stroller. Is that allowed on the boat and on the path to the grotto?

    1. Kaya— Kauai Activity Specialist says:

      Aloha Joy! Yes you can bring the jogger along. This tour is wheel chair accessible so there will be no trouble with the stroller.

  5. joyce says:

    Is their transportation from the cruise ship port to the Wailua River?

    1. Kaya— Kauai Activity Specialist says:

      Aloha Joyce! You will need to arrange transportation yourself. There will be taxis available for you at the Ships port if you decide not to rent a car.

  6. Beth says:

    I am coming on a Carnival cruise and will only be there for one brief day. Is there any way to do the tubing adventure and the fern grotto in one day?

  7. Colleen says:

    I was wondering about my children (9, 11, 14). Is this trip something us adults would enjoy and the kids might be a little bored? Thanks!

    1. Kaya— Kauai Activity Specialist says:

      Aloha Colleen! This is a beautiful tour, very scenic. Riding up the Wailua River on a flat bed boat, stopping at the fern grotto and riding back down will take about an hour & 20 minutes. I don’t think it is too long a tour for those ages. I believe they would enjoy the time out on the water.

  8. KELLY RAY says:

    How much does a taxi cost from NCL Pride or America to the Fern Grotto? Is there any shuttle’s which take you to & from if yes how much? Does uber/lyft pick up at the cruise port?

  9. Dan Neve says:

    Aloha, we will be visiting in Feb of 2023 and planning on the Smiths Luau. If we would also sign up to do the Fern Grotto boat tour from there what time should we arrive so we can see the grounds as well as do we get off of the boat and walk to the grotto? Mahalo,

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