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Eleele is a southern Kauai community with a name that literally translates to “black water.” Eleele has a population of about two thousand residents, and covers only one square mile of land area. Eleele is a fairly central town although the community’s small town character is very much intact. Eleele is mostly a kamaaina community, and many residents are employed by nearby resorts and the tourist industry. Most residences in Eleele are single family homes, although there are also a few small condominium complexes, duplexes, and larger mansions. The majority of homes in Eleele are relatively inexpensive, with the average property value clocking in somewhat lower than $200,000. After the islands were discovered and colonized by Europeans and Americans in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the land around Eleele was widely utilized by the sugarcane industry. While there are very few sugar fields remaining in the Hawaiian Islands, Eleele has since shifted its agricultural focus to the cultivation of coffee.
In fact, Eleele is home to the Kauai Coffee Company, an internationally known coffee grower that is home to a visitor center and a gift shop. The site also boasts free coffee tasting and tours of the plantation grounds. Eleele is adjacent to the town and harbor of Port Allen, which play host to a number of tourist attractions and scenic destinations. Port Allen Harbor is right next to Glass Beach, which is best known as a dark sand and glass beach. The Red Dirt Shirt store, which produces some of the most easily recognizable local attire, is found near Eleele, as is scenic Hanapepe Bay. Eleele itself is the place to find the Eleele shopping center, and there are additional shops and restaurants in Port Allen Marina.