K A U A I
Kauai, the Garden Isle. What an island of tropical adventures. From the moment Brandon and I stepped off the plane and into the fresh, crisp and humid air, we knew we had found true paradise.
Living on Oahu, believe it or not, can become hectic during a routine work week. From the insane 1-1.5hr drive to work (which on a slow day takes 25 minutes), to the tourism and over population, Oahu can get busy. Kauai was a new Island for Brandon and I to venture and explore and it was perfect.
We started day one with relaxing at our beautiful resort, the Hanalei Bay Resort, which is located on the North Shore of the island. The tropical, lush mountain views were jaw dropping and nothing like I had ever seen before. They stood so tall and with the palm trees and ocean right at my toes, it was indescribable.
The pool was ginormous and there was a pool bar! Sipping a Mai Tai while relaxing in the pool and staring at majestic mountains can't be relaxing enough.
Day two we headed to the famous Wailua Falls hike. When we first got there, there was a crowd of cars and people staring over a ledge at the waterfall.. I thought to myself, this can't be it... We wanted to see the bottom of it. A little upset, we started walking back to our car and noticed a couple coming out from behind a fence in the trees... we realized they had jumped the fenced and must have hiked down to the mouth of the waterfall. We took on this challenge. This "trail" is not marked and it's not even a trail, more like a path tons of human feet have created. We jumped the fence and walked into the woods. We saw a strong tree with rope tied to it leading down a set of rocks (a mini cliff so to speak). We tugged the rope a few times and were a little hesitant at first. Another couple offered to go down first so we watched, anxious and nervous. They got down safely so we went on.
We had to go BAREFOOT because no shoes could keep your grip on the muddy, slippery rocks. We rappeled down the rocks and came to a flattened, muddy, wet area. Throughout the "trail" were more flat areas followed by small drops in the Earth where you had to use the rope to get down. (We sure trusted those rope).
Once we got to the bottom, the majestic falls were in sight. We swam and laid out for awhile just saying over and over again to each other how we couldn't believe the falls were real.
After the fun at the falls we drove around looking for good surf spots. The waves were too big for me to longboard but Brandon found a killer spot called "Kealia" which he surfed 6-7ft waves. I sat on the beach with my camera in my hand and just watched in amazement how comfortable he was with head high waves towering him.
Day 3 consisted of surfing at Kealia again, driving around the island and swimming at Hanalei Bay. The sun was hot, the water was fresh and the air was salty. Perfect day with the hubby.
Our LAST DAY on Kauai was even more magical than the first three. We took a boat tour to see the renown Na Pali Coast and man was it everything we expected. UNREAL, SURREAL, WANDERLUST, UNEXPLAINABLE. Tall, majestic mountains, cliffs, whatever you call them towered us and our small boat. Small waterfalls trickled down the front surface of the mountain. Small caves were hidden between the bottom edges of the mountain, making the coast look like haven to a bunch of mermaids. It made you believe in mermaids! The sun touched the color of the valleys and ridges so effortless, so perfectly, so designed. Black birds flew in circles drinking water from the trickling cave water. The water beneath us was rough but calm all at the same time. Spinner dolphins swam around around our boat, playful and curious. I squealed like a child. It was a sight most only ever see in movies and we were taking it all in first hand.
After our fun boat tour, we docked and had a few hours to venture some more before catching our flight back to Oahu. We decided to drive to the Waimea Canyon, which most say it's like the Grand Canyon of Hawaii (we haven't been to the Grand Canyon yet but it is on our bucket list of course). It was a windy, curvy drive up a mountain and it led us to some beautiful red, yellow, mixture of colorful mountains (It reminded me of the beautiful mountains in Jemez, New Mexico). It was so beautiful.
Driving back to the airport, we spotted a cute fruit store on the side of the road (I am a sucker for fresh fruit/veggie stands and anything local). The store was so colorful it reminded me of Costa Rica. It gave you the vibe you only dream of when visiting Hawaii (something you don't get on Oahu unless you're on the North Shore). They were selling fresh coconuts and a variety of other fruits and snacks. Brandon and I hung out here for a bit, sipped a fresh coconut and then went on our way. Kauai was seriously my favorite part of Hawaii. It's so tropical, so secluded, so serine. It is exactly what you think of when you take the plunge to move to Hawaii.
Much Aloha for reading!