Tales from Kauai
"If you are looking for a trip with people that you can connect with while you also connect more with yourself, this is the company to do it with. Tracy and Kim are great at making their trips all inclusive so people from all walks of life can join in." Alyson M.
We just returned from our FABULOUS trip to the Garden Isle of Kauai. Here are a few of the great memories during our week of adventure. Hope you can join us on one of our upcoming trips!
We had eight days slated on the calendar for the magnificent, flowering, eye-popping island of Kauai. Our expectations were high and our hiking shoes were well broken in. From the moment we touched down on this Pacific island our thoughts were full of the myriad of options available to us as lovers of nature, culture, and activity.
We excitedly awoke with the sun on our first full day in Kauai. Of course, it wouldn't be a great start to the day if we didn't stop at the Sunrise Coffee Truck for a Cup of Joe and a breathtaking sunrise on the beach with coffees in hand.
Sleeping Giant and Ho'opi'i Falls hikes
The decision was made, while savoring both the coffee and the sunrise, that we would still have a full day of hiking as planned. Our much anticipated hike along the Kalalau Trail was thwarted by flooding and road construction. We came up with plan B: hike both Sleeping Giant Trail right outside of Wailua and Ho'opi'i Falls trail in Kapa'a.
Did we choose the right trails? Absolutely! A little research and a lot of sunshine graced us with a day of hiking that brought us incredible views, great cardio workouts, and pictures that will bring lasting memories.
Wailua River Kayaking
The morning sunrise would have to be admired from the road on our second day as we stopped briefly for coffee and snacks before jumping into kayaks. Day two would be spent paddling the Wailua River, hiking in the rain forest, and swimming under Uluwehi Falls. We didn't let a little mud (ok, A LOT!) stop us from getting to the scenic "secret falls".
Of course, we slept well as we had many wonderful hours of outdoor activity that lent itself to a sound night of sleep. Staying in cabin-like tents along the ocean certainly contributed to our wonderfully restful nights as well. Ah, the calming white noise of the Pacific Ocean lulling us to sleep.
Kauai Coffee Plantation
Being that we were all coffee connoisseurs, a trip to the Kauai Coffee Company was a mandatory stop. The Jeep almost drove itself there! Samples upon samples of freshly brewed flavors of Kauai coffee awaited our taste buds. Needless to say, those first two nights of sound sleeping weren't repeated on the third night. Even so, we had absolutely no regrets for sampling almost every variety of coffee available to us.
Kokee State Park and Waimea Canyon beauty
The following nights were spent comfortably hunkering down in a rustic homey cabin with a cozy fireplace in Kokee State Park. We spent our days exploring the park both on foot and by car. There may be more hiking trails than roads in the park so we had our work cut out for us deciding which trails we deemed best.
Of course, hiking in Waimea Canyon was one of the tops on the list. It is often referred to as the "Grand Canyon of the Pacific" and rightly so! It truly seems to rival its continental namesake. We were definitely going to take in some sights and hikes in and around the canyon while we were there.
Polihale Beach and the Plantation Cottages
After a few days of fabulous hiking within Kokee state park and Waimea Canyon, we ventured out and took our time exploring the west coast of Kauai. We took a bouncy drive to Polihale Beach to explore the westernmost public beach on the island. Remote and almost entirely to ourselves, we enjoyed basking in the sun and running through the rough waves that day. It was certainly not a day to swim as winds were high but exciting nonetheless.
Our night was spent in a historic plantation cottage in the sleepy town of Waimea. The warm vibes of the town surrounded us as we shopped the local market, grabbed a bottle of wine at the neighborhood grocery store, and ate dinner outside on our patio overlooking the ocean. Another restful night was sure to be in store.
Monastery, Manta ray, and most everything else!
We were seriously determined to do and see all we could in the eight days we had scheduled on Kauai. Having hiked numerous trails, the decision was made to start "checking off" more sights and visiting more known places of intrigue.
One of the lesser known but beautiful and educational places to visit is the Hindu monastery. We were unable to make the tour but had the opportunity to walk through a limited area of the monastery grounds and eavesdrop on a worship service taking place. The peace and tranquility were palpable.
Nearby the monastery were both the Rudraksha tree forest and the Rainbow Eucalyptus grove. Stops to walk among the rare and beautiful trees were added to our itinerary on the last two days. If you have never seen a Rainbow Eucalyptus tree (or even if you have), don't pass by this opportunity. It is a literal grove of the beauties!
Of course we couldn't come to the island of Kauai without enjoying a few lighthouses as well. Monk seals, whales, and even Manta Rays frolicked in the nearby ocean waters. We ventured out onto both roads and hiking trails to get glimpses of the island's best known land features and sea creatures.
We all agree that eight days was just not enough. Although, we definitely made the most of our time and put a lot of miles not only on our Jeep but on our legs as well. It was an island adventure that fulfilled all expectation and gave us dreams of our next return. Maybe the next time we return YOU will be with us!