Aloha and welcome to Kauai! Also known as The Garden Isle, it is the westernmost island of all of the Hawaiian islands. Before my husband and I booked our trip to Kauai, my expectation was that it would be extremely Americanized. To my delight, I found that Kauai is nothing like any of the places I’ve been to in the US.
The island is the epitome of “Aloha life”. For the Hawaiians the word Aloha is more than just a greeting for ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’. It has a much deeper meaning that stems back to the path of Huna and is stated in the Hawaii Revised Statutes (State Law) as the following:[§5-7.5] “Aloha Spirit.” (a) “Aloha Spirit” is the coordination of mind and heart within each person. It brings each person to the self. Each person must think and emote good feelings to others. In the contemplation and presence of the life force, “Aloha,” the following unuhi laula loa may be used:
“Akahai,” meaning kindness, to be expressed with tenderness;
“Lokahi,” meaning unity,to be expressed with harmony;
“Oluolu,” meaning agreeable,to be expressed with pleasantness;
“Haahaa,” meaning humility, to be expressed with modesty;
“Ahonui,” meaning patience, to be expressed with perseverance.
These are traits of character that express the charm, warmth and sincerity of Hawaii’s people. It was the working philosophy of Native Hawaiians and was presented as a gift to the people of Hawaii.
“Aloha” is more than a word of greeting or farewell or a salutation. “Aloha” means mutual regard and affection and extends warmth in caring with no obligation in return. “Aloha” is the essence of relationships in which each person is important to every other person for collective existence. “Aloha” means to hear what is not said, to see what cannot be seen and to know the unknowable… [L 1986, c 202, §1] Truly, Kauai is a place of peace quiet and relaxation. Surrounded by perfect palm trees, island breeze, mountain peaks, lush vegetation, rocky coasts, organic food and wild roosters that crow at all times of the day and night, I was without a care in the world in Kauai.
Everyone we met on our path was warm and relaxed. This is what island life is all about, no rushing, no worrying, just feelings of Aloha! From one end to another, Kauai is meant to be explored and embraced.
The resort we stayed at was located on the sunny South shore at Poipu beach and Koloa landing. This side of the island is made up of great mid to high end shopping, amazing restaurants, resorts, golf courses and beautiful homes. If I could do it all over again, I would definitely stay here. We found that the best restaurants were located in this area and it’s the perfect spot for couples, honeymoons and those interested in luxury travel.
One of my favourite parts of the island is the North shore. The North shore is known for its beaches, the famous Na Pali Coast, Hanalei Bay, beautiful waterfalls and surfing. This is the best part of the island for taking part in some adventurous activities such as helicopter and boat tours, horseback riding, scuba diving, hiking, surfing, exploring, camping (in the Na Pali coast) and ziplining.
We couldn’t pass the opportunity to learn surfing in Hanalei Bay! We hooked up with Hanalei Surf School and caught some waves with our instructor JD. He did an amazing job instructing and giving us pointers that will stay with us forever. Because of him my husband and I both decided to take up surfing recreationally!
The East Side:
Restaurants, parks, hotels and hiking trails. The East side of Kauai is decorated with stores and restaurant with a more local feel to them. You can find some less expensive restaurants and hotels in the area of Kapaa. There is a great little cafe called Java Kai in the area and their Kona coffee is made to perfection. Definitely a must have while if you’re staying there or passing through.
The West Side:
This part of the island is known for historical activities and natural attractions like the Waimea Canyon. If you have time on your trip, there are many great look out points before you get there and at the canyon itself. If you’re feeling adventurous, the canyon is made up of scenic hiking trails for exploring. These are not meant for amateurs as they get pretty narrow and steep.
I hope that everyone going to Hawaii makes it a point to explore Kauai. For easy breathing, scenic adventures and a relaxing island atmosphere, Kauai is on top of my list.
Mahalo for now and until next time!
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