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Russian Fort Elizabeth State Historical Park Tours

Russian Fort Elizabeth State Historical Park
Evidence of a little-remembered attempt by Russians to gain a foothold in Hawaii between 1815 and 1817 can still be found in the remnants of an old fort alongside the mouth of the Waimea River. Though today the site is little more than jumbled red rock walls hinting at its former layout, an irregular octagon guarding entrance into Kauai via the waterway, it once was the site of grand plans to use Kauai as a permanent provisioning and trading station for the state-sponsored Russian American Company. With outer rock walls constructed from ancient heiau (Hawaiian temples), the fort once included residences, a chapel, gardens, a trading center and the main fort building. Visitors can explore what’s left via a self-guided interpretive tour following signage with drawings of how the area once appeared.

Here, Dr. Georg Anton Schäffer, sent to retrieve lost cargo from a wrecked Russian American Company ship, overstepped the orders of his mission. Schäffer instead built the fort complex, befriended Kauai’s chief, set him against the newly instated Hawaiian King Kamehameha and secured a sandalwood monopoly for the company. When Mother Russia learned of Schäffer’s actions, however, she disapproved. Russia didn’t want to become embroiled in the already complicated politics of the islands; they just wanted their cargo back. So, Russia summoned Dr. Schäffer home, leaving the fort to be claimed by the Hawaiians, and, later, after the dismantling in 1864, the elements.

Practical Info

The remains of the fort—within the larger Russian Fort Elizabeth State Historical Park—are located off Kaumualii Highway (named for Kauai’s last king and the man Dr. Schäffer befriended) on the river’s eastern bank about a mile south of Waimea proper. The site has a small parking lot and is open daily during daylight hours. If visiting during peak sun, bring sunscreen and a hat; the area is exposed with little shade.
Address: Kaumualii Hwy, Waimea, Hawaii 96796, USA
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9 Tours and Activities to Experience Russian Fort Elizabeth State Historical Park

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Free Cancellation:Get a full refund up to 24 hours in advance on most experiences.See Details
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Private Waimea Canyon Tour

Private Waimea Canyon Tour

star-5
Experience the best of Kauai on a full-day private tour through the island’s scenic landscape, highlights and historic landmarks. Sample locally-grown beans at the Kauai Coffee Company, and visit old-fashioned Hanapepe; see the last Russian outpost on Hawaii, follow the footsteps of Captain Cook and take in stunning views of Waimea Canyon. Feel the mist off Waipo’o Falls, watch the Spouting Horn lava tube erupt with towering surf and watch for sea turtles in a sheltered cove before finishing your tour with a visit to stunning Wailua Falls. *Price displayed is based on a party of four to six passengers
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  • 7 to 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$231.74
Price varies by group size
From
$231.74
Price varies by group size

Kauai Adventure Bundle: 4 Epic Audio Driving Tours

Kauai Adventure Bundle: 4 Epic Audio Driving Tours

star-4.5
Shaka Guide is an audio tour app that gives you the benefits of a guided tour with the freedom to explore on your own terms. This Kauai Adventure Tour Bundle comes with four socially-distanced audio driving tours: • Waimea and Na Pali Tour (6-8 hour tour) • Wailua Valley and Waterfalls Tour (6-8 hour tour) • Poipu and Koloa Tour (4-6 hours hour tour) • North Shore Kauai Tour (6-8 hour tour) The app uses GPS to give you turn-by-turn navigation to historic sites, popular attractions, world-class beaches and scenic hikes with stories about the places you’re visiting and music to entertain you along the way. All Shaka Guide Tours... • Never expire - take them multiple times or buy in advance • Work 100% offline - no data or wifi necessary • Let you take the tour when you want - download the tour and choose the day that works best for you *Please use the link in your confirmation email to download the app*
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  • 4 days
From
$24.99
per group
From
$24.99
per group

Kauai: Waimea Canyon Tour

Kauai: Waimea Canyon Tour

star-4
Experience the majesty of ‘The Grand Canyon of the Pacific’ on this full-day tour of the Waimea Canyon and highlights of Kauai’s southern shore. Peer into the cavernous red expanse from the best vantage points, and learn how the canyon was formed by thousands of years of erosion. Along the way, see other natural and cultural attractions including the Spouting Horn blowhole, Waimea Town, the Hanapepe Valley Lookout, Fort Elizabeth and old Koloa Town.
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  • 7 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
From
$85.00
From
$85.00

Kauai Shore Excursion: Journey to Waimea Canyon

Kauai Shore Excursion: Journey to Waimea Canyon

star-4.5
While in port in Kauai, take a half-day tour to Waimea Canyon, known as the ‘Grand Canyon of the Pacific'.  In stark contrast to Kauai’s lushness is Waimea Canyon State Park. The canyon offers one of the best views of the island's western coast.  Ddrive through Hawaii’s first sugarcane plantation and to the town of Waimea, made famous by Captain Cook hundreds of years ago. Before concluding your tour back at your original departure point, stop to see the water fly high at Po’ipu’s Spouting Horn on the island's southern side.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$73.60
From
$73.60

NCL Cruiseship Special - Sightseeing Tour - 7 hrs.

NCL Cruiseship Special - Sightseeing Tour - 7 hrs.

star-5
10 beautiful stops - 7 hour guided sightseeing tour. Designed for guest of the Pride of America, Norwegian Jewel, Star Princess, Eurodam, Sea Princess, and Carnival Miracle. We packed a mix of the most breathtaking places on the South and West side of Kauai, from the mini Grand Canyon of the Pacific, waterfalls and beaches to the largest plantation of coffee growers in the US. Our professional guide will share with you our islands rich history, culture, geology, and legends while you kick back, relax, and enjoy the scenery in a small group setting. You will have an opportunity to shop and eat local, take beautiful pictures of natures amazing creations, and listen to the fascinating legends and history behind the sites.
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  • 7 hours 30 minutes
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$167.54
From
$167.54
Taking safety measures

Waimea Canyon & Na Pali Driving Tour app

Waimea Canyon & Na Pali Driving Tour app

star-3
Go on an all-day adventure to Kauai's famed Waimea Canyon & Na Pali overlook. Enjoy turn-by-turn directions, information on what to look for and where to explore. Plus all the interesting stories and legends that bring the beautiful sceneries to life! Skip the tour bus & explore Kauai at your own pace for a fraction of the cost with the best self-guided audio GPS tours for Hawaii! Rated the #1 best GPS tour app for Hawaii with over 6,000+ raving reviews and 200,000+ downloads. Why you need it: ✅ You don't need service because you can download the tours & use them offline ✅ Much cheaper than a tour bus at only $9.99 for lifetime access ✅ Save time planning your trip because we have the best stops lined up ✅ Freedom to stop and go as you please, unlike a tour bus where you are confined to the pre-determined route (no fun!) ✅ Hear cool and fun stories along the way (and some corny joke's that might make you laugh)
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  • 4 to 6 hours
  • Taking safety measures
From
$11.99
per group
From
$11.99
per group
Taking safety measures

Da Westside Explorer Sightseeing Tour - 8 hrs.

Da Westside Explorer Sightseeing Tour - 8 hrs.

star-5
Explore the western part of Kauai with a local guide on this eight-hour sightseeing tour, which includes 10 different spots at fabulous attractions. Highlights along the way include the chance to check out the views at Waimea Canyon (considered the Grand Canyon of the Pacific), explore the black sands at Waimea Pier, and sample java at the Kauai Coffee Company, the largest coffee producer in the USA.
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  • 8 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$167.54
From
$167.54
Taking safety measures

Kauai: Waimea Canyon and Fern Grotto Kauai

Kauai: Waimea Canyon and Fern Grotto Kauai

star-4.5
Discover some of the Garden Isle’s most enchanting landscapes and cultural attractions on a full-day Kauai sightseeing tour by coach. Peer into the majestic, multicolored expanse of Waimea Canyon, be surrounded by the lush tropical paradise of the Fern Grotto and learn about sacred Hawaiian legends on a cruise down the Wailua River. See many of the island’s south shore highlights along the way, including old Koloa Town, the Spouting Horn natural blowhole, Captain Cook’s Landing and Coco Palms Grove.
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  • 9 hours
  • Free Cancellation
From
$129.00
From
$129.00

Intimate Waimea Canyon Half Day Eco Fun Tour from South Kauai

Intimate Waimea Canyon Half Day Eco Fun Tour from South Kauai

Explore the best of Kauai’s diverse South Shore in the comfort of a small group, and still have most of the afternoon free to spend as you choose. It’s an area rich in history and legend, from historic Russian Fort Elizabeth to the Spouting Horn Blowhole and lush Hanapepe Valley. See if you can recognize the grand scenery from many Hollywood movies, and finish with spectacular views into the red cliffs of Waimea Canyon.
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  • 5 hours
  • Free Cancellation
  • Taking safety measures
From
$117.42
From
$117.42
Taking safety measures

Frequently Asked Questions

The answers provided below are based on answers previously given by the tour provider to customers’ questions.
Q:
What's the best way to experience Russian Fort Elizabeth State Historical Park?