Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Kauai did I have to come back?

Yeah, yeah, there are plenty of reasons to come home. One of the best being that I get to spend tomorrow, Thanksgiving day, with my modern family. Thank you, Jacquie, for hosting. It's going to be a great one!

But, really, it wasn't exactly easy to come back from Kauai. I really, really, really, really liked it. It felt quite different than the other islands to me. Super laid back and so, so gorgeous. Mother nature is right in your face, and if mother nature isn't good medicine, I don't know what is.

Another reason for the fun is that we stayed with good friend's of Aquilino's the first 4 nights, so we were with good people who live there full time. It's good to have local hosts/guides.

Let's take a look see.

No photos from our first day/night of travel, beach, then a big table for 8 for dinner at Kintaro's, one of the best sushi places I've ever been to.

The next morning we hit one of the local yoga studios, which was packed (Hmm, The House of Yogi Kauai?), then headed over to Acusport Kauai to check out Suzie's (our host's) clinic set up.

Hey, that logo looks familiar!
Super cute space, 1.5 blocks from beach, right in Kapaa town, so next time you're there, stop in and get a treatment!

After a house call where Aq & Suzie gave one of the Kapaa High's star football players an acupuncture treatment, it was off to climb Sleeping Giant.
We made it to the top!

Pretty view, right?

Turns out we weren't at the top though, so we ventured past the Keep Out signs to the craggy nose? chin? of the sleeping giant. It was windy and high and a little dizzying up there. But an amazing view that I somehow don't have handy.

We cleaned up at Suzie's after and then headed north to Hanalei for some per-concert food and drink. Then to the Church of the Pacific Amphitheater to see Nahko and Medicine for the People, a band we really like and have seen numerous times here on the mainland. Not sure how it worked out that they played during our short stay, but it did.

The next day, a weekend day, Suzie & Jeff took us all the way out Lupe road to a tubing spot. Aq & I were standing in the back of their souped up Suzuki Samari all the way back there. Talk about a bumpy ride.

Yes, please look up our noses.
We ended up with some hip bruises, but they were well worth it.

Once parked, we grabbed our inter-tubes and then jumped in some cold, clean water and set off down two pitch-black tunnels to arrive here:

Hi Jeff! Hi Aq! This might be my favorite photo of the trip.

It took us longer than expected driving in and out of that adventure, so we missed the first half of the Kapaa High playoff game. But we arrived just in time to drink a half-time beer in the parking lot with Aaron (dad of the banged-up star football player and long, long time friend of Aq's) and his friends.

They won! So those boys were headed off to the Hawaiian Islands championships on Oahu the following weekend.

Post-win beer in parking lot.
Hi Aaron, Denise, Tyler, Aaron's mom, Suzie and me!
Can you believe I forgot my very green Kauai Power Yoga hat??

The next morning found us doing more morning yoga, at a different studio in Kailua that was so packed she had people practicing in the retail area. (Hmm, The House of Yogi Kauai?)

We then ventured farther north, again to Hanalei, for some proper beach time.

Then farther north,
Do not touch the rocks on the way into this cave. You will get yelled at!

finally to the end of the road at the Na Pali trail head.

We arrived rather late in the day, so couldn't give it a proper hike this time around, but we did scramble up a bit, enough for some good views. Next time, early arrival, major hike.

At some point I snapped these photos of the yard at Suzie and Jeff's.They live on a gorgeous piece of land that backs up to a mountain. Other than the ubiquitous chickens the place is one of the quietest I've ever been too. Talk about good sleeping.

Another day, I forget which one by this point, Suzie was good enough to drive us around to some total tourist spots.

Wailua Falls

And the Koloa Rum Company. They offer free rum tastings many times daily. We learned how to properly layer rum (think mai tais) and sipped 6 different varieties. If you're wondering, rum tasting gets you more buzzed than wine tasting.

Later that day we bid farewell to Suzie and Jeff and headed to the south side of the island, to Poipu beach.

Two nights of hotel living was pretty nice too.

View from balcony

Oh, wait I do remember what day it was, or night was the night of the super moon!  We headed down to Poipu beach, post-moon rise, which was amazingly empty.

Mistah, where are you when we need you with your mad photo skills?

Except for all the turtles who came on shore for their moon bath.

Just look at these lovelies!

This guy was way up on shore. He wanted the full super moon effect I suppose.
After bidding farewell to the turtles we drank beer and did handstands in the moonlight, a super moon to remember for sure.

The next day we checked out the west side of the island, heading off early to Waimea Canyon.

See that thin, high falls back there?


Aww. Look at all those babies!
If you've not been to Kauai, well, let me tell you, there are chickens EVERYWHERE! No kidding. These happen to be Wiamea canyon chickens.
We hiked a few miles for the view below.

Worth it!

That afternoon found us swimming or on the beach, or surfing if you were Aq.

Our final morning we took a cruise along the south shore, which is lovely with it's lava rock lined beaches.

All in all, I heart Kauai. Like a really big, fresh flower lei kind of heart Kauai.


Jacquie said...

beautiful! I have photos from inside that same cave, and I definitely recognize those north shore beaches. Ahhhhhh. Sorry you had to come back, but I'm glad we get to hand out tomorrow!

love you, lovely.


Pat said...

So glad you had such a good vacation! And looking forward to our extended family Thanksgiving. Thanks for cooking Jackie!
Love, Mom

Me, You, or Ellie said...

Now *that* is one helluva vacation. The beauty! And the mountains and waterfalls ain't bad, either. (heh heh)

You look great, Beth, and so happy. I suppose you'd have to be a Neanderthal not to look happy in that place. Wait, I bet Neanderthals *do* look happy there -- the turtles certainly do.

The photos are gorgeous, and I'm sorry you had to head home, but your Thanksgiving looks like a fabulous time -- a Smashing Success, even.

And hey, you've got your hip hip bruises to remember it by.