Friday, April 19, 2019

Hawaii 2019: Kauai Part 2

Oahu | Kauai | Maui Posts | Maui Oceanfront Marathon 

Time for another action-packed day.  We grabbed breakfast from the hotel market before driving a few short miles to the Spouting Horn Beach Park that was home to the Spouting Horn Blow Hole.   Since we arrived early we didn't get a chance to browse all the souvenir/craft vendors that were setting up shop for the day.   The park is on a pretty little stretch of land with some interesting volcanic rock outcroppings.   Plenty of Kauai chickens to watch at this location.

We've yet to mention our "third wheel" for our trip - the GyPSy Guide App.    We bought apps for the three islands we were visiting (about $7-$10 each).  As we drove along the guide would start telling us information about where we were based on our GPS position.  We'd get helpful tips such as "...turn left to see X, or continue straight to head to Y".  It helped us to find sites that were not on our radar. Apps are offered for many locations across the country.   We also heard a lot of stories about Hawaiian history, legends, food, culture, geology, and received a language lesson.

We traveled along the south shore west to head to the Waimea Canyon (The Grand Canyon of the Pacific).  On our way we lucked into the seeing the monument commemorating Captain Cook's arrival to Kauai in the town of Waimea.   Along the way through Waimea Canyon State Park we pulled over to see a few sites like a small waterfall flowing through red clay.   Leaving as early as we did allowed us to get to the first canyon view point before the tour buses.  This was the only clear view we had in the park.    As we made our way further up the mountain the clouds and rain got heavier.  The view of Na Pali Coast from Pu'u O Kila Lookout was not in the cards for us today.  This spot is considered one of the wettest places in the world with over 300 inches of rain a year.

We waited it out as long as we could then called it quits.  On our way to our next destination we made a pit stop in Waimea for a snack at JoJo's Shave Ice.  It was the best of the entire trip!  Holly had the Lilo and Stitch (berry flavors) while Dave had the cold brew coffee.

Our next destination was Port Allen for two attractions:  a brewery and the launch point for our dinner cruise.  Kauai Island Brewery and Grill had the best kalua pork of the trip and the lumpia egg rolls were pretty good.  Inside the brewery is a pretty nice mural of the Na Pali Coast.  Beers were good, but Kauai Beer Company in Lihu'e won that contest.

We walked across the street to Captain Andy's office/waiting lounge.   We were signed up for a dinner tour of the Na Pali Coast, but given the seas were very rough on the west side (and would be for the rest of our trip) the cruise would alter course to sail east.   We had the option to bail with a full refund but decided a catamaran ride was going to be better than any alternative we could come up with,   The coastline is not as dramatic on the southern/eastern route but we did get to see our hotel from the water!  Along the way we saw one monk seal on shore, a few whales, and a dolphin pod pretty close to the boat.  Since we missed the Na Pali Coast by boat we now have a reason to come back to Kauai.

We docked after sunset and made our way back to Po'ipu and the Sheraton.   The problem we have with sunset dinner cruises is they feed you way too early.   Dinner at 5:00 is way to early.   Back at the Sheraton we went to Rum Fire to enjoy a few cocktails and the live entertainment for the evening.   Back in the room we enjoyed some of the snack food we had been hoarding.  Tomorrow was going to be another long day of touring.

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