ALOHA and Welcome to Kauai, from the entrance to The House. Everything here is as aloha as ever. Such a charming welcome man and I adore the rain chain.
We can hardly believe it ourselves but there are Still places we haven’t visited on Kauai.
We decided to spend our first day out at the North Shore looking for some of the beaches we’ve never seen.
But first a stop-off at the Christ Memorial Episcopal Church on the way to Kilauea.
There has been a church and graveyard on this site since 1888. According to their website: “In 1939 the Kilauea Sugar Company deeded the churchyard to Christ Memorial Church and gave the native stone used in the erection of the present building. The chief benefactor, however, was Mrs. Robert Shapard, of Griffin, Georgia, in memory of her husband, and on the Second Sunday after Epiphany on January 19, 1941 The Right Rev. Harrington Littell consecrated the church.”
…we come into the jewel of Hanalei Bay, the main arc being to the left of this picture, previously most well known for the location shots in South Pacific but the young folk might know it best from the many scenes in The Descendants.
Many of the patches of sand along this bay have their own names such as Puu Poa Beach, Pavillions, Pinetrees, Waipa Beach, Waikoko Beach, and more.
On one of the patios at the Princeville Hotel, now a St Regis, with ‘Bali Hai’ in the distance. The hotel is on the easternmost tip of Hanalei Bay and is still a very nice place to chill.
We’re not big fans of Princeville dense as it is with condos and golf courses but you’ve got to admire these views.
And more into Wainiha Bay.
As you continue on to the end of the road past Tunnels Beach, past Haena Beach Park, past Canyons Beach and the Maniniholo Dry Cave and the Waikanaloa Wet Cave, past the National Tropical Botanical Gardens at Limahuli (don’t miss this if you ever visit!) you’ll end up at Haena State Park and Ke’e Beach where the Kalalau Trail begins to take you for a trek along the Na Pali Coast.
I’ve got pictures of all these from other visits and am planning to make a ‘compendium’ for future reference.
We didn’t stop anywhere along this way because for some reason it was jam packed with cars Everywhere. Spring Break we’re guessing, which goes on for several weeks around here.
Today we enjoyed a delightful tour of the Kauai Kunana Goat Farm. They make organic goat cheeses and grow a lot of organic fruits and vegetables for the local restaurants and farmers markets.
The farm is also in the North Shore area, a bit inland and south of the Kilauea Lighthouse, on the border with the East Side.
From their website: “Enjoy a guided visit to our unique family farm. Sample the cheese while we explain how it is made, from milking the goats to the finished product. Interact with our loving family of goats, free-range chickens, and check-out the honey bees.
“Next, take a stroll through our organic tropical orchards. Here you will see mango, papaya, avocado, lychee, citrus, breadfruit, and many other exotic fruit trees. Learn about our organic vegetable and herb gardens while you rest under the shade of a tamarind tree with colorful orchids hanging from the branches. Discover some simple ways we are making our farm sustainable.”
We followed lei making by eating at a local place and I had to have the deLUX Loco Moco. Dark brown gravy poured over two fried eggs that are sitting on top of a slice of American cheese that sits on a hamburger patty all nestled in a bed of rice surrounded by sliced Portuguese sausage, mushrooms, and onions.
Fortunately I asked for a take away box right at the beginning before I scarfed the whole thing and ended up eating half of it for lunch and the other half for dinner.
Recalling their western past.
The town of Waimea is very small and has maintained an ‘historic’ feel. It is also the last bit of gas/food/lodging available before heading up into Waimea Canyon. The Russian Fort is right outside town too.
Since we’ve both visited the Canyon and the Fort so many times we decided to move on in search of what we had not seen before.
Splendid Red Jungle Fowl! We saw so few last year we were wondering if there had been a plague but this year there are plenty of them again strutting around in all their splendidness.
“How you eat a local chicken: You put a chicken and a rock in a pot with water and boil the water until the rock is soft. Then you throw away the chicken and eat the rock.”
This morning we went to the Farmers Market at the Community College in the Downtown area, hoping to find the goat people there, but no joy. Then we went to follow the South Shore Koloa Historic Trail and did find several of the spots noted.
Here we have “the oldest Catholic Church in Kauai, St. Raphael’s was founded in 1841, two years after Catholics were granted religious freedom in Hawaii after the French threatened Honolulu. Father Arsenius Walsh established the parish.”
There was a crew of parishioners dressing up the church for Easter tomorrow.
Here’s a short introduction from their website:
“As the American Civil War was raging between the North and the South, young George Wilcox took a lease on a struggling farm located on the outskirts of Lihue, in what was then the Kingdom of Hawaii. The farm had been chopped out of a large grove of kukui trees and was therefore called Grove Farm.
“His vision combined with his education resulted in his ability to change this arid farm into a thriving sugar plantation. As the Civil War destroyed the agriculture in the South, it helped sugar become a successful venture in Hawaii. Sugar’s success was also favored by the Hawaiian monarchy as it was an additional source of income for its kingdom.”
Our tour group gathered in the kitchen where a sweet as could be woman made us iced tea and cookies and told us about how over the years it all worked in the kitchen.
Speaking of which, this morning I had a Starbucks giant espresso frappuccino with nonfat milk and not too much sweet powder and it was good. Oh no, that’s not good. I rather wish it wasn’t as good as it was!.
Hail Hail the Gang’s All Here gathered for our annual pot luck feast extravaganza! We are missing Camus’s teenage son Koa who came later and Camus’s boyfriend Curt who is off island for work (everyone loooves Koa And Curt).
Seated: Kathy’s son Ryan and his fiancee of one day Cheyenne, Kenny, Camas. Standing: Bob, Sharon, Kathy, me having rushed over to get in the picture and forgetting to open my eyes and forgetting to focus the &%*## shot, and Sharon. (When they’re together we call them The Sharons.)
Kathy, in celebration of her 60th birthday wanted to hike the Kalalau Trail along the Na Pali coast…which she and Camus did last weekend. OMG…
…it took them 8 hours to hike in. This map doesn’t show the entire 11 miles but you can get the idea.
There were no misshaps along the way. Fortunately they had arranged for all their gear to be delivered to/from the campsite by boat so they didn’t have to haul it in backpacks.
They spent two nights camping with the hippies who have settled in permanently. On the third day it only took 6 hours to get out…and a Grand time was had by all! And then they took a nap.
We went over to the West Side today to enjoy a tour at the Kauai Coffee Company. They have a museum, and a gift shop of course, and a self-guided stroll with many interesting markers along the way.
They also had a video playing with an extended story of the process from seedling to cup’a joe that was very good, and they had samples of two dozen coffees for your tasting pleasure.
Back to the North Shore today to see the Waioli Church and Mission House in Hanalei. The church was under a termite tent but the church social hall was hosting a hula lesson for haole housewives.
All the music came from the one woman sitting in front singing with her ukulele. She was great.
…and we ended our day with a drive through some back roads. I was trying to get us to a viewpoint for the Kiluea Falls but one road was blocked by a gate to a huge private estate and another road was blocked by construction of what looked like it was going to be another huge private estate.
If I lived around this area I would not be happy that all the backroads to where I was used to going were being blocked. This must be a constant problem where private developments grow up in once wild areas.
Big fun television-wise we’ve been enjoying recently. It’s the Merrie Monarch Festival, nights full of wonderful hula.
From Ms Wiki: “The festival (run each year since 1971) is dedicated to the memory of King David Kalâkaua, the second (and last) elected king of Hawaiʻi, who came to the throne in 1874 and reigned until his death in 1891. He was a patron of the arts, especially music and dance.
“Kalâkaua restored many of the nearly extinct cultural traditions of the Hawaiian people. These included myths and legends, and the hula, which had been forbidden — due to the influence of Protestant missionaries — for over 70 years.”
The trees you see in the background are part of the hardwood forests the foundation is growing as an income source for the future.
The whole area was leveled in 1992 by Hurricane Iniki so it’s quite amazing that they have managed all this in 20 years. ‘They’ is actually the founders Joyce and Ed Doty whose own vision and aesthetic is represented in everything you see here. Note the Norman Rockwell kitty there at the end of tree.
Every part of the garden has these sculpture features. There are more than 100 of them all chosen or commissioned by Joyce.
One of the many water features.
There is a huge children’s garden, an entire 3/4 scale Hawaiian Village, a full sized hedge maze, a Navajo compound with villagers and handmade Sedona-style mesas, a set-up at the beach for big weddings, an orchid house, and there must be more I’m not remembering. And the gift shop, not to forget that.
Today was Hindu Monastery tour day which we always enjoy but now are obliged to warn first-timers. The crowds have gotten so large, and they do only one tour per week maximum, sometimes not even every week, that you’ve got to have sharp elbows if you are going to hear the guide.
We are following the progress as they build their new temple. Nothing has happened all year due to ‘the economy’ but they are ever hopeful and have intentions to restart the construction this year.