Archive for November, 2011

I heard Jason Mraz’s I’m Yours on the radio the other day and no matter how many times I hear it, it always manages to bring a smile to my face.  This song is just so wonderfully happy and calming that it brings back memories of my vacation in Kauai last year.  In fact, I’m pretty sure the hubs and I played this song every time we were on the beach!

Featured Travel Idea: Kauai, HI

top: treehouse, na pali kayak, pat’s taqueria

middle: hanalei beach, hanakapi’ai falls, monkseal

bottom: jo jo’s, waimea canyon, taro fields

Kauai, also known as the Garden Island is probably the lushest of all the Hawaiian Islands.  Rather than stay in a traditional hotel, why not stay at The Treehouse, a vacation rental located in between the North and South shore of the island, making it the perfect home base for exploring the whole island.  Although not really a treehouse (although that would be way cool!), it is a 2 bedroom stilt house with a wrap around Lanai and a tropical garden and lily pond, ensuring that you will experience the Hawaiian lifestyle as soon as you step foot on the property.

For the active travelers, make sure you go there between April and September so that you can kayak along the Na Pali coast, one of the most breathtaking coastlines in the world and best viewed from sea.  If that’s not enough of an adventure for you, hike the 11-mile Kalalau Trail (one-way), which follows the Na Pali coast and takes you to numerous waterfalls and beaches accessible only by foot.  The whole trail is strenuous, requires a permit, and most likely an overnight stay at Kalalau beach, but you will be rewarded with dramatic views and total seclusion.  For those desiring just a day hike, you can still hike 2 miles (no permit) on the Kalalau Trail to Hanakapi’ai beach and falls.  For a different vista, head south to Waimea Canyon, also known as the Grand Canyon of the Pacific.  While it is certainly grand, the lush landscape and colors make it maybe even more beautiful than the stateside canyon.  On your way back from Waimea, stop by the small town of Hanapepe for lunch at the Shrimp Station.  No visit to Hawaii would be complete without some shave ice so go to the Original Jo Jo’s Anueanue Shave Ice or the not so original but still good Jo Jo’s a few blocks away.

Of course you have to squeeze in a beach day.  Go North to the famous Hanalei Beach.  Have lunch in the little town center or better yet, stay on the beach and grab some delicious tacos at the taco truck, Pat’s Taqueria.  If you prefer the South, head to Poipu beach.  If you’re lucky, you may even see some Monk Seals on the beach!  For lunch, grab a Puka dog, Hawaii’s version of a hotdog, and then some ice cream from Lappert’s Hawaii.

Finally, for something a little bit more unique, take a Kauai Photo tour, or for the artistically inclined, a Kauai Paint for the Day tour.  The photo tour provides you with the opportunity to see Kauai through the eyes of a local photographer.  You can rent and learn how to use a DSLR, ask the photographer all sorts of questions, and visit scenic spots, like the taro fields and king kong mountain!  There’s numerous other activities available (helicopter tour, ziplining, river rafting) making Kauai the perfect vacation spot to do everything or nothing at all.  Can someone please go there now and take me with you?

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