Less than an hour’s flight from O’ahu and Honolulu, the island of Kauai is a true paradise in the heart of the Pacific. Nicknamed “the island of gardens”, it appeals to travelers eager for lush nature, mountains to climb and wide open spaces.
If you wake up early in the morning by these ubiquitous roosters that have become emblems of the island, you take the opportunity to fully enjoy the days filled with sunshine and spectacular discoveries. By car, boat, hike or swim, you can happily and calmly explore Kaua’i (in Hawaiian), one that has nothing to envy its big sister, the popular archi island of Maui.
Ride through incredible scenery to Kilauea Point
Sit comfortably, cameras not far away, as the road trip along the eastern part of the east is breathtaking. From the small town of Kapa’a, we go north to reach the lighthouse at Kilauea point (the view of the sea, the cliffs and the lighthouse is superb). Along the road, we stop at a dozen places (beaches, viewpoints, state parks, beach parks…) like so many natural lookouts and “scenic routes” with brightly colored splendors. We also stop to buy fresh fruit and vegetables in an improvised farmers market in a field or at one of the many kiosks set up by the roadside.
Hike along the Nu’alolo Trail
Cutting through Koke State Park, the 3.8 mile (round trip) Nu’alolo Trail promises a good 5 hours (including 40 minutes of picnic at the top) of sheer fun; for those who appreciate the often muddy hikes, more technical and including some good climbs. And who is not afraid of heights, the arrival at the top making the hikers pass on narrow points nestled between high cliffs… A walk and some efforts which are well worth the candle while in front of us is the famous Na Pali Coast (Na Pali Coast), spectacular so admired by diving. Turquoise sea, orange mountains, green craters, green trees; the view is simply magical. (We expect a changing temperature at all times and we help ourselves with a walking stick on the way back.)
Swim with sea turtles and see the Na Pali coast up close
This same Na Pali Coast must be admired from several points of view. By boat taking part in a 4 hour outing early in the morning, we admire its rocks, the starting point of its cliffs, the natural caves carved by the waves, the many waterfalls, the incredible strength of its waves and various important places in the culture and history of the island’s First Nations. We also have the chance to snorkel and swim with fish and sea turtles (dozens of them in one place!) (A perfect, but choppy outing that is definitely not for sensitive hearts).
Take your breath away on the road to Waimea Canyon
Before heading there for a short or longer hike, drive up Waimea Canyon Drive and be inspired by the breathtaking scenery stretching along the winding 19 miles of Koke State Park. A road leading from the coast to the Pu’u Kila Lookout. We stop – often – to immortalize the points of view of the various belvederes and to admire nature in all its splendor and its force until the piece of resistance: the immense Canyon Waimea, beauty of nature composed of ancient volcanic rocks, long of 10 miles and 3,500 feet deep.
Watch the surfers at work
I say “admire” because we admire Hawaiian surfers for several reasons: their ability to tame the wildest waves, their recklessness, their agility, their technique and… yes, their dream bodies! Shortly before dark, it is common to see people gathering on the beach to just watch the surfers at work, especially on Kaelia Beach near the small town center of Kapa’a, where the waves are rolling. good. You can also get there by bike by rolling on the cycle path gently skirting the ocean.