Powered Hang Gliding in Kauai
Powered Hang Gliding with Birds in Paradise
From Helicopters, to Catamarans or hiking, there are a lot of ways to view Kauai's rugged Napili coastline. For the adventurous, here's a different way to view Kauai's famous waterfalls, Napili coastline and shores - powered hang gliding.
On the island of Kauai, there is an outfit which is run out of the SW side of the island called "Birds in Paradise" that specializes in powered hang-gliding. Birds in Paradise operates out of the Port Allen Airport which is only about a half-hour drive out of the popular Poipu area.
A powered hang-glider is very different than a standard hang-glider. A powered hang-glider consists of a body with an aircraft engine and are not all too different from a small airplane. The pod, also called a "trike" allows you to sit comfortably upright. There are two passengers in the powered hang-glider, both you and the instructor. The wings are above the body, like in a normal hang-glider. The entire configuration is driven by an aircraft engine. Basically, it is very much like riding in a small airplane without all that bothersome fuselage around you. Naturally, there is a parachute attached to the entire configuration just in case there is any type of problem. Birds in Paradise does have an excellent safety record.
Currently (2009), Birds in Paradise is operating as many as four aircraft. Each aircraft carries an instructor and one passenger so you can take an average family if you wish. Children of 7 or 8 years of age don't seem to have a lot of fun on this adventure so their participation is discouraged. There is no maximum age. The powered hang-gliders can carry passengers up to 270 lbs. safely.
Now here is the coolest part. This is an actual flying lesson. It's just you and your instructor and as long as the weather isn't too rough, you get to take control and fly the powered hang-glider. Flying out over the Pacific Ocean and along the breathtaking Napili coastline.
Costs to fly in the powered hang gliders is as follows:
$150 for a half-hour
You can also purchase photos of your flight for $85 after it's all over.
The phone number for Birds in Paradise is (808)822-5309.