Kauai Top 5
This list of Kauai Top 5 is based off of my trip in 2016. I spent 1 week on Kauai with friends, we had the perfect mix of sight seeing, activity and relaxation. As with all my other lists Kauai Top 5 is not in any particular order.
1 . Kalalau Trail
Kalalau Trail along the Na Pali Coast, located on the West Side of the island. A hike of potentially 22 miles round-trip, a permit is needed to go farther than Hanakapiai Beach. The trail head is located at Ke’e Beach. We hiked the 2 miles to Hanakapiai Beach and watched the surf crash against the beach, heeding the warnings of the signage for no swimming. The first 2 miles boasting stunning views of the blue water, sandy beaches and lush mountain sides. Each new view was awe-inspiring and I could not get enough.
2. Swimming under Hanakapiai Falls
Hanakapiai Falls is a 300 ft waterfall with a pool large pool below, perfect for taking a dip. Behind the waterfall is a rock ledge to sit or stand on, so you can take in the beauty of the lush valley surroundings, also a perfect photo opportunity. Swimming under a waterfall was a bucket list item of mine, so I was ecstatic about crossing it off my list. The water was cool – but not cool enough to scare away a group of Canadians! It was just what our sore bodies needed after the long hike and hot sun.
3. Waimea Canyon
Often refered to as the Grand Canyon of the North, Waimea Canyon is a spectacular mix of red ochre rock and the lush greens of grasses and plants. Then you add the blue sky and you have such vibrant and contrasting colours. Driving up to the National Park itself was a delight for the eyes. Red ochre dirt surrounded the path. We stopped near a little waterfall that just seemed so out of place; the red dirt made the area seem desert-like. We had not planned for any hikes or walks – but there are many trail heads from the National Park. Saving those for next time.
We snorkeled at two beaches, one on the South side, Poipu and one on the North shore, Anini. Poipu ended up being our go to beach, as the weather was better on that side of island, and the surf a little less rough. Good conditions for surfing, mean bad conditions for snorkeling. Poipu had many colourful fish here and there with some interesting coral. Anini was a sandy beach and less interesting for snorkeling, however this is where the boys saw some sea-turtles so it is worth a mention.
A fun tip we picked up from the locals – fish like frozen peas – bring them with you while you snorkel and you will have fish swarming you!
We booked the Mountain Tubing Adventure a few days in advance with Kauai Backcountry Adventures. The day started out with a drive through former Lihue sugar cane plantation, with our guide sharing history, information and tips on the island. Once we arrived at our starting point, we hopped in a tube, donned a headlamp, and began the float down the old irrigation canals, through several tunnels and flumes, engineered and hand dug circa 1870. It was a relaxing way to spend the morning, and learn a little bit of the Kauai’s history.
A Luau. As with any Hawaiian holiday, a luau is a must. The one we attended was awesome. The pig was succulent, smoky and salty. My mouth waters thinking of it. The show was exciting – the fire throwers were spectacular, having everyone on the edge of their seat. Plus all the Mai Tais and Blue Hawaiians you want…
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