Main Blog

October 29, 2014 by, Lindsey

So my niece the other day told me to “ try new things .” That is what they were telling her at school, to eat a healthier diet I think. I agreed with her and said “yes, it can be good to try new things .” This lead to me to thinking about visitors coming to Kauai and now here I am blogging about it. :)

I saw the article in the newspaper and I did not have to think twice about it. Try new things , and the topic of breadfruit came up. Breadfruit? Yes, ulu. Ulu is the Hawaiian word for breadfruit, and really, yes that is the name of the fruit!

Anyway, the article I read was about a plant nursery here on Kauai and they highlighted the talk about breadfruit. See the article here if you wish: http://thegardenisland.com/lifestyles/opinion/the-ins-and-outs-of-breadfruit/article_536b27f0-51dd-11e4-a516-af10bb863938.html

Visitors to Kauai more than likely have not heard of this food. Well, it is a fruit that is very diverse and forgiving. By forgiving, I mean that it can be eaten tastefully at any stage of its development. Yes, the flavor differs, but hey, not everyone like to eat the same food varieties. In the article, there are tips on what to look for when purchasing a breadfruit, how to store it, and how to prepare it in the kitchen.

Breadfruit is notorious as well. It is energy rich with protein, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and carbohydrates. The fruit grows on trees, and the tree itself can produce hundreds of pounds of fruit each year. This fruit is a classic Hawaiian food item, and I encourage visitors to come and try it while they enjoy their stay on the island.

October 27, 2014 by, Lindsey

I have some great news for Kauai residents and visitors alike. The North Shore Shuttle service has launched earlier this month, and this is such welcoming news.

For residents, this is a shuttle/van system that can conveniently take you places where you want to go. For visitors, this may be even better news! When I travel somewhere new, I don’t know the land, the roads, even a general sense of direction for me is completely gone. My family jokes about this with me, and I have come to laugh along too. So if it were me coming to Kauai, I would be so very thankful for someone else to shuttle me around!

The shuttle service runs on the North Shore, and moves about between Princeville, Hanalei, Wainiha, Haena, and Kee. Fares for visitors are just $2 each way, and residents are charged $1. This is very reasonable… I like it for it is paid transportation and navigation all in one! Experience Kauai is the name of the shuttle service. There are two shuttles and one runs from 6am to 6pm and the other, from 9am to 9pm.

To see the full tours and shuttles schedule, check out their main website at http://kauaishuttles.com/tours-and-shuttles/. You can better see where the shuttles go to and from, as well as see their airport shuttle service. They offer 14 seater vans for most of the commuting, not a bus. They so on-call shuttle service, as well as plan-ahead appointments. I personally vote for the latter, as I am such a planner. This will likely ensure reduced fees instead of doing a last minute call for a higher price if you know what I mean…

Wondering where a good place to stay is while you are visiting Kauai? A home away from home is the right answer. Going to a vacation rental home with all of the amenities is the way to go. It is luxurious to have your own space, privacy, and to be honest–to have your own kitchen and laundry room! A vacation rental home like the Princeville Garden House is an ideal option for a family or a group of 6.

Princeville Garden House

Located at 4862 Victoria Loop, Princeville, HI 96722, this home is on a quiet loop in Princeville that has garden and mountain views with a golf course nearby. It is a three bedroom, three bath home that has many comforts like home. Bedrooms have ceiling fans, oh and there are two master bedrooms! Recall how I said this was perfect for a dual family getaway? The third bedroom hosts a queen sofa bed with an upgraded mattress.

The living room has a home theater system, the kitchen is a full sized kitchen with top appliances and elbow room for cookin’. Wireless internet is throughout the house, and there is a flat screen TV as well. Out back there is a private backyard with a slate flooring, outdoor furniture, a gas grill, a hammock, and more. Oh, yes, there is a lime, orange, and avocado tree as well. If you are staying, help yourself to the ripe fruit! What attention-to-detail-perks ;) love it!

For a week’s stay, prices start at $1350. If you break that down, for a week’s stay that’s less than $200 per night. That is easy on the budget; then if you were to split the unit for a couple’s getaway, imagine that price squarely cut in half. This is very doable, is my point. If saving money is something you seek out, think about cooking in the kitchen. Really, consider how many meals can now be cooked at your vacation rental on your own time schedule, with groceries you have purchased from the store. I’ll say it again: this is even more so easy on the budget.

October 23, 2014 by, Lindsey

Ok, so the other day I shared about a family friendly fall festival on Kauai, and that started a domino or a snowball effect in my mind! I wanted to share about more Halloween happenings on Kauai. Here are my tips:

If you are staying on Kauai, as a visitor, I suggest trick-or-treating in your neighborhood. If you are staying at a resort or a hotel or something of that nature, you will be in like-company. What I am trying to say, is that trick-or-treating there will be unfruitful. Your kids will likely be disappointed. What I suggest is staying at a vacation rental and trick-or-treating in that more traditional neighborhood. That will ensure your kids are happy; on Halloween night that is part of the whole goal!

There are other community events going on. Depending on your preferences–and likely you children’s ages–there are events going on all over Kauai. From haunted houses to harvest festivals, there is something for everyone. You just have to be on the lookout for an event near you. If you want to have a night in, easy! Just pick up some candy from the store, leave your porch or front light on, and plan for trick-or-treaters to stop on by.

Happy Halloween from me to you and yours!

Fall is in the air, and I just heard of a local fall festival going on this Friday and Saturday. It’s the 14th Annual Kauai Christian Academy’s Fall Festival hosted at their campus at 4000 Lighthouse Road, Kilaueua. If you thought it, you guessed right–the school is located on the side, on the way to the Kilauea Lighthouse. If you have not been there, I encourage you to check it out and in the daylight ;)

For little ones, this will be something special. I have family who have gone to this in years past and they have enjoyed it. There are plenty of activities:

Petting Zoo

Pony Rides

Bounce House

Carnival Games

Hay Rides

Corn Maze

…and Kettle Corn and Shave Ice, of course! There will also be a silent auction to benefit the school.

Halloween is just around the corner at this point, and it can be fun to extend the holiday out to the surrounding weekends. Why not, after all? This event I know is a family friendly, carnival themed atmosphere for families to dress up, come out and have a good time. On both days, the 24th and the 25th activities start at 4pm and go til 9pm.

October 15, 2014 by, Lindsey

Ok, now this is a super family fun worthy event, and all towards a good cause! At Kauai Mini Golf and Botanical Gardens is Kilauea is a Mini Golf Fundraiser this Saturday, October 18th from 11am to 3pm. It is a fundraiser for the Aloha School Early Learning Center. They are a non-profit organization that offer early learning education to young children. The school is in Hanalei, and Kauai Mini Golf and Botanical Gardens is in Kilauea (5-2723 Kuhio Hwy, Kilauea, HI 96754 to be exact).

I heard about the event from a co-worker, and I thought I would share! It is a fundraiser for the school, and it costs $15 per person or $50 for a family of four; children ages 3 and under are free. This entrance fee includes all activities and mini golf itself, games, crafts, face painting, and –wait for it– glitter tattoos! How much fun is that. Most kids love to get those fake tattoos, and now add glitter– that is taking it to a new level. ;) Yay for the kids… I love it when the kids win! (Glitter tattoos and helping out the early education Aloha School.) What a win-win situation.

On the flyer I got, it says there will also be a silent auction, as well as a lucky drawing (tickets are $5 each). I’m not sure what is being auctioned, nor what the lucky drawing prize is–I suppose you and I will have to go there and find out now, won’t we?!

October 14, 2014 by, Lindsey

Coming up this weekend…

Princess Ka’iulani Keiki Festival is here! This is a celebration festival that honors a princess. Storybook Theatre of Hawaii is hosting the 9th annual festival in Hanapepe Town. Activities start on Friday night at 7pm with the feature film, “In the Footsteps of Our Princess” at the Hanapepe Hawaiian Congregational Church. That is the main event that day; then, on Saturday the 18th from 12noon to 4pm is the main festivities. There will be a hula, a costumed children’s parade down Main Street, Hawaiian music, and then following the parade the Princess will read a story at the Storybook Theatre before attending the rest of the party. By party, it is really a commemorative birthday party that will be held at Sparky’s Garden.

If this is something you would like to take part in, the Hanapepe Hawaiian Congregational Church is located at 3815 Hanapepe Road. The Storybook Theatre is located at 3814 Hanapepe Road, Hanapepe, Kauai… just next door over. If you have any questions or anything, I have looked up the contact info: office@storybook.org

October 10, 2014 by, Lindsey

I enjoy some good history from time to time. I like the hands-on, interactive type of history personally. I can watch the History Channel when a topic interesting comes on, but it doesn’t seem to hold my attention. What I like best are the live and in person history lessons. No, I am not talking about time travel to go back in time (lol) but I do like to in-person see the sights and places that are full of history. When there are stories and interesting facts about a place, I like to connect the dots, hear the stories and see the actual sites of the places in the stories.

The Grove Farm Museum near the airport in Lihue is a place where I (and you) can get your history fix! They have tours Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10am to 2pm. Cost is $20. Please call ahead and ask to speak with Carol at 808-245-3202 to make your reservation. Yes, you do need a reservation for the days and times I listed above.

So what is this place you may ask? Well, it is a site preserved of one of Hawaii’s sugar plantation buildings. It is furnished and has one of a kind collections inside. It is surrounded with orchards and pasture; after all, it is a sugar plantation home! The tour I went on was about 2 hours long, and not rushed at all. It was nice pace but our tour guide was not flustered, rushed, or in a hurry to get the tour over with. I liked that a lot :)

Princeville is a popular place to stay and play when visiting Kauai. It is one of the larger cities on the North Shore. Good news is that is borders the ocean, too. When you come to Kauai, you want to be by the ocean, right? Short answer: yes! Pali Ke Kua 124 is a luxurious vacation rental condo with big ocean views. If for some reason you don’t believe me, have a look for yourself:

Pali Ke Kua 124

Pali Ke Kua is at 5300 Ka Haku Road, Princeville, HI 96722. It is close to the water, but in the other direction it is close to town to pickup groceries for the condo, or if you want to do some shopping. Restaurants of all kinds from truck vendors to fine dining is in Princeville. We are all on Hawaiian time, relaxing and having a good time!

This condo is a 2 bedroom, 2 bath vacation rental that goes for $1350 per week. This is easily affordable, and should you opt for this one as a couple’s double date getaway vacation, split the price in half and you will be shocked at how much money you are saving. Even then at that rate for a family of 4 or 6, this is a winning deal. Everyone can have their own space in the evening, night, and then to get ready in the morning? It will be worth it! There are 2 bedrooms with a queen sized bed in each, and then there is a sofa sleeper.

Also indoors, there are the classics: Wi-Fi, Tv with DVD player, fully kitchen and full bathrooms. Out towards the back, facing the water, is a lanai, or a back patio. This is inviting for so many reasons. You will dream up every reason just to go out back to be closer to the water, to hear the waves, to smell that fresh air…

As you can tell from the picture, the condo is fully furnished with modern fixtures, appliances, and linens. Quite frankly, it is an attractive unit, if I may say so myself. It is a condo, and what comes with the property features are also a pool and Jacuzzi, a paved path to the beach and picnic and barbeque areas.

October 5, 2014 by, Lindsey

Well, this weekend is wrapping up, but my mind is already onto next weekend. On Saturday, October 11th is the Eo e Emalani i Alakai, also referred to as the Emalani Festival. It is an annual procession and festival the second Saturday of October. The festival is like a step back in time when traditional Hawaiian music and traditional chants will be performed. There is a royal procession on horseback!

All are welcome to attend, and it is free! Yes, it is fully free to attend. It is at the Kokee State Park. Festivities begin at 10am but the procession commences at 12noon. This is a traditional festival, for there are royal processions and traditional acknowledgements. Things should be wrapped up by 4pm that afternoon.

There will be exhibits, crafting demonstrations, hula dancers, live music, and snacks for sale. It is a great time for the family, both young and old, visitors and residents, to come out and learn more about the traditional Hawaiian culture. A good time should be had by all. :) The weather report looks good as well. Then again, I have heard that it is a “rain or mist” kind of event. It may rain, but it’s not in the forecast. If it does rain, it may very well be a warm sprinkle rather than a “rain” per say.

For more information about this event, visit Kokee State Park’s webpage that I linked. Have a great week, and look forward to the weekend with me!

Does the term “sea cave” excite you? It may strike an inner chord of your adventurous side! I thought it might! Let me tell you more…

There are a number of opportunities to kayak Kauai, from rivers to along the shoreline. The Na Pali coast is a great place for those eager to get out there and face the water. I highly suggest and recommend taking a guide with you, however. Here are a couple guides that I will help lead you to:

Kauai Kayak at http://kayakkauai.com/sea-kayak-tour-na-pali/

Na Pali Kayak at http://www.napalikayak.com/napali-day-trip/

I’ll reiterate in case I wasn’t clear; this is for adults or persons over the age of 16. Children under age will be considered per the guide’s recommendation. In general though, individual’s ages 16+ only. This is a rigorous adventure, and an all day trip. The guides are helpful and very knowledgeable. This is a neat way to see Kauai up close and personal. On outing like this, the sights and animals you come across are one of a kind. You will get to see a side of Kauai that you would have likely not seen like this–from the perspective of a kayak!

No, you do not have to be an “ironman” but you do need to be comfortable in the water, and in good physical condition/health. If you are nervous about this, I say contact the tour guides and ask them just by giving them some honest basics about your health and overall build. It is easy to get excited, nervous, anxious, etc about this kind of thing. What I suggest doing (and what I have recently been doing) is reading up reviews on the tours. I am reading about people’s experiences and how their preparedness helped or not. I like to learn from others experiences as much as I can.

I have heard so many good things about these tours. I have a few friends who have done this, and they tell me I should go! I want to, but I just haven’t… not yet. One of my friends said she would go with me, so I am going to take her up on it! I will blog about it afterwards, of course. Ok, I say “Part 1″ because there will be a Part 2 with my story! Ready…set…go!

October 2, 2014 by, Lindsey

Happy October everyone! I saw this in my news feed on facebook and knew immediately I’d like to share it on my blog. Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10152890147871756 to NPR’s time lapse video of what the total eclipse of the moon will look like Wednesday morning at different time zones. If only they had Hawaiian Time on there! That is okay, Hawaiian Time Zone is three hours prior to the Pacific Time Zone.

In order to see this upcoming eclipse, Hawaiian time it will either be a late night, or an early morning. To see the beginning of it, approximately 11:30pm HT it will begin to have its red umbra color. The eclipse will last until about 3:00am HT. Like I said–an early morning. I think I will opt for the stay up later option to catch it as it begins to turn it’s red hue. Some call it the blood moon for its red tone. So beautiful. I am attracted to pretty things and gorgeous views. This is a rarity in the sky to see the moon like this and then to be near the water’s edge. I also like how this is something universal that many across the land can see and enjoy.

September 29, 2014 by, Lindsey

It’s coming, so I’m blogging about it now! Coming up October 4th and 5th is the 18th Annual Coconut Festival. This festival is about all things coconut. From games to entertainment, to games and cooking demonstrations, this is the place to be that weekend! Events and activities start at 9am on Saturday, and then 10am on Sunday. It is at Kapaa Beach Park, which is next to the library.

This is an affordable family friendly event (in my opinion). Kids ages 12 and under are free, and all others it’s just $5. It is an outdoor event, so plan accordingly with sunscreen and things as you wish.

I have been to this annual event in the past, and I remember nonstop live music, hula dancers, and other live entertainment that is all family friendly. There was also a petting zoo for kids and inflatable bounce houses/obstacle course bouncers. Oh, and it’s called the coconut festival, right? There are all things coconut everywhere, too! Have you tried coconut ice cream? I highly recommend it. What about coconut pie? There’s a pie eating contest for that :D

There really is something there for everyone. From food to fun to history, I’m confident you will walk away from this festival knowing something that you didn’t know before. It’s part of being a lifelong learner. And I like that.

For more info on this event, check out the KBA, which is the Kapaa Business Association who is sponsoring this event. Here’s their website: http://www.kbakauai.org/Pages/coconut-festival.html

September 26, 2014 by, Lindsey

Looking for something to do this coming weekend? Remember the Waioli Mission House and Church I blogged about earlier? If not, read about it here: http://www.kauai-vacation-rentals.com/waioli-mission-house-church/

Anyway, tomorrow, Saturday September 27th is Smithsonian Magazine Museum Day, and admission to tour the 1836 Waioli Mission House is free! I just love the word free, for the most part. From 9am to 3pm admission and guided tours are free on the this one day only. If you are in Hanalei or on the Kauai’s North Shore in general, you won’t want to miss this opportunity.

Now that I mention it, I have not been in awhile! I think I will make the time to tour the mission house and get a mini history lesson while I’m at it. I love hearing stories, and the folks who used to live here sure have a lot of stories to tell. The guided tours are nice, and I like to hear the questions and answers as well. I can be a bit shy in crowds, so I usually do the listening. If I do have a question, I am the one to say it in my head over and over until I am satisfied with how I phrased it. I am a detailed person and I can get pretty specific in my questions and thoughts! If you happen to be on the tour when I am there, I’ll be the quiet and observant one! ;)

September 25, 2014 by, Lindsey

Want to go to the beach? Can’t seem to decide on which one? I want to give a shout-out to Lumahai Beach in Hanalei, on Kauai’s North Shore.

Lumahai brags of white sandy beaches. Oh that glorious sand is fantastic! I was there just the other day and I enjoyed falling in love with this beach again; the waves, the rocks, the sand. I usually see people just walking the shoreline at sunset. Very romantic spot!

This is not one of those overly populated beaches either, there is not too much influence of humans here, so it is picturesque and all natural in its element. I suggest other beaches for swimming and snorkeling. If you want to feel like you are one of the first people to step foot on a beach, this is the one for you!

If perhaps your or someone in your group is unable to get to the water’s edge for some beach walking, maybe the lookout point from the main road will suffice. It provides a great lookout and photography spot that I recommend. You can also find Lumahai Beach on numerous postcards on Kauai if that is something you prefer to do.

So get on out there and live a little! That is what I was up to this past weekend. I tend to do a lot of thinking during my beach walks, and the water’s rise and fall comforts me and soothes my soul. It is a way for me to think, to heal, to rejuvenate. I encourage my readers to do the same.

Kauai views are the best. I of course have a biased opinion, but there are others that agree with me. After seeing some Kauai views live and in person you may very well agree with me too!

Cliffs 7305

Staying at a vacation rental in the popular location of Princeville, Kauai is a fabulous place to stay. Whether it be for work, travel, vacation, couple’s getaway, this really is a nice place to call home while on Kauai. The ocean views are brilliant in color and the greenery around is just so vibrant. Pictures are alright, but they do not do the Cliffs 7305 justice. I say you’d have to experience this kind of view in person. The whole sensory overload is just amazing. Being perched up high like that on the cliffs gives a sense of presence, a sense of control. Like how a bird perches itself in a tree, the Cliffs have the same effect.

The vacation rental itself is a 2 bedroom, 2 bath top floor unit of the Cliffs. There is a master suite, and a loft with an office and an additional king sized bed. This rental sleeps 6 people comfortably though, for there is a sofa sleeper in the living room. See what I mean now about a honeymoon suite, couple’s getaway, or a family vacation? This place fits the bill, and for only $1110 per week it is an attractive place to be in more ways than one.

September 20, 2014 by, Lindsey

Speaking of restaurants (can you tell food is on my mind?) I thought I would share about one of my favorite and inexpensive restaurants on Kauai. I am all about good food, but I also keep to my personal budget. I can imagine for travelers that sticking to a budget might be part of the vacation plan. So let me present to you one of my favorites that is good for the wallet and good for the belly ;)

Bubba’s Burgers

Bubba’s can be found all over Kauai, but I frequent the ones on Kauai’s North Shore. This is not your ordinary burger place… they offer fresh, grass-fed Kauai beef burgers on their menu! See Bubba’s menu here for the serious inquirer. Let your eyes find their way to the milkshakes on the menu as well, and you will not be disappointed with their real ice cream.

This is a great place, really. Location, price, quality of the food… yes, yes and yes again! They have been in business since 1936 and are good at what they do. Bubba’s saying is “Always juicy, never greasy.” I sure like it that way. They are very a very family friendly place, and the atmosphere is just right in my opinion. Check them out in Hanalei :)

September 20, 2014 by, Lindsey

I’d like to give a shout-out to the restaurants on Kauai’s north shore who have gone Styrofoam (polystyrene foam) free:

Bubba’s

Kilauea Bakery

Lighthouse Bistro

Kilauea Fish Market

Barracuda

Java Kai

Hanalei Dolphin

Hanalei Pizza

Common Ground

La Petite

Mediterranean Gourmet

Sushi Girl

Build A Burger

Tahiti Nui

Aloha Juice Bar

Postcards café

Shave Ice Paradise

Na Pali Art Gallery and Coffee

Nanea Restaurant

Tropical Taco

…and the list keeps growing! Feel free to comment on this post to share with everyone the other restaurants that have gone polystyrene foam free. It is a step in the renewable or reusable resources direction.

Looking for some things to do on Kauai’s north shore? Well, you don’t have to look too hard to find ‘em. Follow my blog and I will share with you things to do, activities, news of events going on, as well as some places to stay.

Today I thought it would be nice to highlight the Waioli Mission House and Church in Hanalei. Here is the trip advisor link to the Mission House. It is a famous Hanalei Town landmark, built in 1837. It is officially listed on the National Register of Historic Places. What is so special about this place? It is rich in history–let me tell you!

Abner and Lucy Wilcox were missionaries back in 1837 and this was their home. It has a lava rock chimney and is furnished with timely koa furniture. They couple had eight sons, all born in this house. Oh and what I find fascinating is the clock on the wall that was put up in1866 (my sources tell me) that keeps perfect time still! Also on the property is the Waioli Huiia Church, which started operations in 1834.

From a historical standpoint these two structures stand out to me as special. I love to see history alive. It has always been neat to walk through old places like that, to literally walk in other people’s footsteps from long ago. In another sense, it makes me all the more grateful for what amenities we have today! I’m just being honest. :)

September 16, 2014 by, Lindsey

Waterfalls are simply breath-taking (in a good sense of the phrase) and gorgeous. I can get lost in a waterfall oh so easily. And by lost, I mean one of those awe-striking moments where you are completely absorbed by it. If awesome means “awe inspiring” then Opaekaa is awesome to its core!

Opaekaa Falls is one of the major waterfalls on Kauai that is most easily accessible for viewing. It is literally a drive, park, view kind of access. There is even parking and restrooms for visitors of the falls.

If you are on Kauai’s east side, up Kuamoo Road, you will see signs indicating the Falls are coming up. It is technically in Wailua. If you are looking for it, you will find it. If you are not looking for it, but are paying attention to the roadways, signs, and natural beauty surrounding you, you will find it. Here is what Trip Advisor has to say about the falls…

For those history buffs who are wondering the meaning of or origin of the name Opaekaa, it means “rolling shrimp.” At one point in time, the stream that flows from the falls had a lot of shrimp in it.

From the lookout you will get a grand view of these falls. If you choose to, you can walk uphill a ways and on the other side of the road you will get a nice view of the Wailua River and the valley that it rest in.

Charge your camera battery! You will not want to miss out on capturing this kind of beauty. As a rule of thumb, I suggest charging your camera and cell phone battery each night so that the next day you have plenty of life in your devices to snap some great photos.