I’m back, It’s me Christi. (Halle’s Co-worker)
I love to travel.
You may say, everyone loves to travel, but I am super passionate about it and I fall in love with most every place I go and Kauai, Hawaii was one of them. I’m in love with several different cities across the U.S and even other countries. My parents are still shocked I haven’t already moved somewhere that I’ve visited.
My first time visiting Kauai, was the most unique way to experience a place, Habitat for Humanity: Global Village Trip. You get to take in the culture, meet the locals and work side by side with the families you are building homes for. I got to experience some of the touristy attractions when I was there the first time, but didn’t get to see as many of the sites as I would’ve liked, so of course I had to go back and this time around, I went all out! I planned my trip to Hawaii revolving around a Half Marathon run!
What better way to plan a trip then by absolutely having a reason to go! I was set to run The Old Koloa Sugar Mill Half Marathon that started in Old Koloa and ran down through Poipu along the beachfront and back past the Mill.
I joined up with my parents in Kauai (their first time). We stayed in a pool and partial ocean facing room at the Kauai Marriott Resort. You enter the drive to get to the Marriott and my parents said it made them feel like they were entering Disney World!
The trees and greenery were unbelievable! What they didn’t know yet is that Kauai and greenery go hand in hand – it is the Garden Island you know. Most people go to Hawaii and visit Maui, Oahu or the Big Island, and we will let them keep going to those, but what they don’t know is that Kauai is the most breathtaking of them all. (Now I may be a little partial, but let’s keep it our little secret)
The Kauai Marriott was nothing short of AMAZING. I mean it was HUGE. It has 5 hot tubs! And a breathtaking pool with a kid pool and slide off to the side! The pool is one of the LARGEST RESORT POOLS IN HAWAII! The pool and the Marriott are all right next to the Kalapaki Bay! THE RESORT HAS IT’S OWN BEACH! There are four different restaurants that are inside the
Kauai Marriott Resort as well! So many options just in one central area! We tried Duke’s Barefoot Bar and Kukuis and I highly recommend both. The nachos are fantastic- at both. One thing I wish I could’ve gotten around to doing at the resort while I was there was the morning yoga on the beach! Such a cool option, but I did get a lot of jogging in with beautiful views of the Resort’s Golf Course. (If you are into golf, the Ocean Course– it’s Jack Nicklaus signature course)
I love everything about Kauai! There are so many fantastic areas on the small island. So I am going to leave you with some of my favorite spots.
Kalapaki Joes (The Westernmost Sports Bar in the U.S, in Poipu and Kukui Grove) – This time to Kauai was my first to Kalapaki Joe’s and I recommend it 100 %! You MUST go in with a BIG appetite because the serving sizes are HUGE and you won’t leave hungry! I’m telling you it is fantastic. Please order the onion rings as an appetizer, but make sure you have a big party or else aren’t ordering a bunch of other food! They literally bring you a BOWL FULL of onion rings covered in parmesan and they are DELICIOUS. I wanted to cry leaving some in our bowl, but we didn’t have anyone to warn us of the portions and had also ordered tacos! I had the pork, Skip had steak and mom had the shrimp. They were delicious and very filling as well. We loved the place so much we ended up back at the Poipu location later in the week for breakfast. It wasn’t a disappointment either!
Koloa Mill Ice Cream and Coffee (in Historic Old Koloa Town) – If you don’t know me, you wouldn’t know that I am lactose intolerant. So, now you’re probably thinking, “what can you get at an ice cream shop?” Well, ice cream of course! I fell in love with this place when in Kauai on my first trip (we went SEVERAL nights – well worth the sacrifice of my stomach) and I had to take my parents back! It is DELICIOUS. Go try it for yourself.
Anuenue Café (In Poipu in Koloa in the back of Poipu Shopping) – This is where I discovered my love for Hawaiian Breakfast. STICKY RICE, PORTUGESE SAUSAGE AND EGGS! YES. YES. YES.
This is what “The Tourist” breakfast platter entails and it doesn’t disappoint. I ended up getting this platter at several other restaurants throughout the week but Anuenue’s version definitely remained my favorite. Skip recommends the Loco Moco, I’m sure. (He got it almost every morning as well)
I could go on and on about great restaurants but a few others you should try: Pietro’s Pizza, Chicken in a Barrel BBQ, Brennecke’s Beach Broiler and Bubba’s Burgers! Now on to Beaches and the Fun!
Polihale State Park (Waimea) – Please drive there (but take a Jeep or a Truck or even hitch a ride in the back of a truck!) It is down a LONG bumpy road, which is not a good mix if you have to pee! But well worth the ride to the isolated white sand beach with a fantastic backdrop of cliffs! Swimming isn’t necessarily recommended at this beach though for the rough waters.
Larsen’s Beach (Kilauea) – Let’s keep this one a secret. It’s quiet and a little bit of a hike to get down to it. But if planning to visit Kauai, go soon! For the locals fear that Zuckerberg is trying to make it not accessible to public anymore.
HIKE at Shipwrecks Beach– My parents and I took in an EXCELLENT and BEAUTIFUL hike starting out at Shipwrecks Beach along the cliffs and beach. We went off the path a lot to get closer view of the water. Try out the cliff jump if you are up for it, all the locals are! I however, chickened out.
ALSO, HIKE THE KALALAU TRAIL ON THE NA PALI COAST! JUST DO IT. No explanation needed. Then hop in Ke`e Beach!
ATV’ing on the Kipu Ranch! – So. Much. Fun. We had two excellent guides which made for an even better experience. We did the Waterfalls Picnic Tour and took in all sorts of gorgeous untouched beauty on the Kipu Ranch (many movies were filmed here) via ATV’s. We also took a swing on the Indiana Jones rope into the Kuleia River and splish-splashed under a waterfall!
Kayaking with Wailua River Guides and Ziplining with Koloa Zipline! (Kauai’s longest zip line) – Both are fantastic options! With EXTRAORDINARY views and LOTS of FUN! I even went upside down on the zip line and others zipped away in “flyin’ kauai’ian” harnesses. Kayaking in the morning is
recommended before all the crowds join in and you hike to a waterfall hole that is practically empty!
As you can see, I could go ON and ON about Kauai. But I will just let you go and experience the rest for yourself!
A hui hou!
The world is a book and those who do not travel only read one page. -St Augustine