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Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

Tucson, Arizona
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Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

DAY 1:

Since this is our 7th trip to Kauai in the last 12 years, we’re not going to do a whole lot other than just relax and enjoy the beauty of the island. So my trip report is going to be pretty boring for those of you looking for tips on excursions and restaurants in particular.

Our flight from Kona to Kauai went through Maui and we were about 45 minutes late leaving Maui – that doesn’t seem to happen too often on Hawaiian. Once we arrived we went to pick up our rental car at Budget, which we had reserved through Costco. We got a great deal, only $162 for 8 days, including all taxes, for a compact car. Got right up to the counter, no hard sell for insurance or upgrades. But then we had to wait over 15 minutes for our car, which was being prepared at the Avis location down the road. Apparently Budget and Avis share some of the same facilities here.

After picking ups some groceries, we headed for our cottage in Kilauea. We immediately noticed how green things are here – even more than usual it seemed to us. Since we had been travelling all day, we picked up a pizza from Kilauea Bakery & Pau Hana Pizza for dinner. It was quite pricy, but very good. Tomorrow we’ll have to make the tough decisions: which bathing suit to wear and which beach to go to. Hope we can handle the pressure.

Tucson, Arizona
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11. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

DAY 2:

This day started pretty much like I expect every day will on this trip – breakfast at the cottage while enjoying the ocean view from there. Then we packed a lunch, put all our snorkeling and beach gear in the car (where it will remain all week so we’ll be ready for whatever we decide to do) and headed north. Although Kilauea is not real close to the north shore beaches, the drive is so beautiful we don’t mind making that drive at all. The tradeoff of having an absolutely perfect place to stay is well worth it for us.

As we were driving we decided that we’d stop at Lumahai Beach for the morning. After the rains overnight the trail was a muddy as I’ve ever seen it. It was still as beautiful as ever and we were able to swim inside the rocks while we were there. One reason we love these north shore beaches so much is the natural shade that allows us to spend hours at the same beach without getting cooked. So we spent 3 or 4 hours there (who’s keeping track of the time?), ate lunch, got in a quick nap and just generally enjoyed our time there. It was the busiest I’ve ever seen it there. Don’t know if it’s because we’re coming a couple weeks later than we normally do or if tourism is just up in general. So if you’re considering coming to Kauai and reading this trip report, Kauai is a terrible place to vacation – please go somewhere else :)

Back to the cottage for an outdoor shower (once you’ve experienced one you’ll never want to shower indoors again) and some time to chill in the cottage. In the afternoon, we went to the Farmer’s Market in Kilauea to stock up on some produce. We then returned to the cottage where we cooked dinner and ate on the lanai – that will also be another constant in our daily ritual. Now off to bed to get rested up for all the difficult decisions we’ll face again tomorrow.

California
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12. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

You just exhausted me with your busy itinerary. You need to slow down. LOL

La Mirada...
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13. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

DBL...I love reading this and you are so right about an outdoor shower.....the little place we stay has an incredible one.

Thanks for sharing with us!

California
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14. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

Yep, love those outdoor showers. The cottage where we stay in Hanalei has one.

I also love Lumahai Beach! Thanks for sharing!

Princeville, Hawaii
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15. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

Our kind of vacation. You enjoy.

Tucson, Arizona
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16. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

DAY 3:

A lot like Day 2. Breakfast in the condo, pack up a lunch and head north. We decided to see if we could find parking at Hideaways and we got the last spot. By the time we’d been there a while the beach was as crowded as we’ve ever seen it – 2-3 times more than the most we’ve ever encountered there. Unfortunately that seems to be the case everywhere we’ve been so far. So in case you missed my Day 2 report and are still considering coming to Kauai, please remember this is a terrible place to vacation and go somewhere else. After we’d been there a while 12 kayaks pulled up on the beach. Once those people started snorkeling there had to have been at least 50 people in the water and more than that on the beach. I will have to say we were highly entertained observing all the different methods people use to get their snorkel gear on and in the water. (We’re obviously easily amused.) We saw the “put your gear on on the beach and walk backward into the water” method, the “sit in shallow water and get lots of sand in your bathing suit while you’re putting on your fins” method among many others.

Hideaways is still one of our favorite beaches, but the condition of the reef and the number of fish there seem to deteriorate every time we go there. I expected the snorkeling to be a letdown after 7 days on the Kohala Coast on the BI, but I was so disappointed, but not really surprised if the beach sees this much use all the time. We spent 3 or 4 hours on the beach (didn’t even have a watch or clock of any kind so I’m not sure and I don’t care) and had our picnic lunch there. With all the natural shade, we still love to just hang out there knowing we won’t get cooked.

After the walk back up the trail, we drove to Hanalei for some shave ice at the Wishing Well – surprisingly friendly service for a change and good shave ice, too. Since we were so close we headed down to Hanalei Beach for a quick swim. (No Joan, we did not check to see if Pat was there today – be patient – some other day.) Then we picked up some fresh fish at the Hanalei Dolphin Market and headed back to the condo. Another outdoor shower, some time to relax and then grilled the monchong from the market and some corn we got at the Farmer’s Market for dinner – it was fantastic!

California
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17. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

Do you always come in June and July? I find from mid June (when kids get out of school) to the first week of August, super busy but yes Kauai's tourism is doing quite well.

When I grow up can I be you?

Tucson, Arizona
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18. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

We usually come in late May/early July, so we are a couple weeks later this year.

And who says I'm grown up?

Oklahoma City...
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19. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

Loving every minute of your trip. Thanks for letting us go along. Re: methods of putting on snorkeling gear. I had to laugh when I read that. Where we stay in Kailua Kona, our condo is right next to a great snorkeling beach and observing the different methods from our lanai is some of our best entertainment. My favorite is the guy who puts it on 20 feet from the beach and walks backwards all the way to the water.

Edited: 22 June 2014, 01:06
Huntington Beach...
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20. Re: Trip Report - June 18-26, 2014

Great TR! And Monchong !! Mmmmmm (think Homer Simpson & donuts). It's about #7 on the list of things I miss about Kauai - haha! Know what you mean about the crowds-we were there May 19-29 and it was pretty busy everywhere. Usually try to avoid holidays, but had to sacrifice for my Sis & BIL .... Thinking it's time to let everyone know about how wonderful those Maui beaches are (wink wink)