A travel and lifestyle blog

Wednesday, 28 February 2018

Exploring Kauai, Hawaii


I wrote this post when I landed in paradise and I'm devastated to be home now! I usually write my posts as and when I visit places and then post them over time so I don't have big gaps with no travel on the blog.

Here, I spent time on Kauai, a small island in Hawaii.

 I was properly nervous about coming because I've not been on a solo trip since my time in New York and it is a bit daunting to go somewhere by yourself, especially when it's a tiny island in the middle of the ocean haha. I really had nothing to worry about - Kauai is beautiful and I felt completely safe the entire time. I'd say it's one of the nicer places to go to by yourself and there's so much to do as well.

Hawaii is my new favourite place and one I'd happily return to. Did I mention they serve free Mai Tai's on the plane on the way over? So definitely one to add to your list then!

I loved my hire car. It was an automatic so felt properly weird at the start but now I love it! I would definitely buy it if I was loaded - at the moment at home I have a Hyundai i10 because when I was living in south africa I drove that all the time on a long term lease and absolutely loved it so it's a great way to test drive something with less stress. This car beeps and lights up when someone passes really close to you in your wingmirror which I thought was great.

First stop was Waimei canyon. Since ubers and tours are ridiculously expensive here, hiring a car is really the only affordable way to get anywhere. Plus since the island is small you don't use that much fuel so it didn't cost much at all. The best thing about Hawaii is that the best things to see are natural and free! Amazing isn't it? And this isn't even the canyon - it's just on the side of the road on the way up where I pulled over to have a look.

I checked out the view on the way up for a bit before headed up to discover...complete fog haha. I felt like I was in lord of the rings or something and I was gutted I'd gotten up so early for not much. 

On my way round the island I stopped here and had a walk around this botanical area - it was so interesting and full of sign boards explaining the use of plants like Pukiawe was used in Lei making and as part of a ceremony to free the chief so he could speak to others. Definitely worth a visit if you want to see native plantlife.

After this I cut my losses and headed further down the island to avoid the weather. Someone had told me in the hostel that if the weather was bad on one side of the island just to drive to the other and it would be nice, and they were right. I headed down to beautiful sunshine.

It's also where I first noticed that Kauai is absolutely full of wild chickens! Chickens were everywhere and I'm not kidding. As the day went on I kept seeing more and more and I eventually found out from a tour guide that there was a hurricane in 1992 that sent things flying around the island at 150 mph...and some of those things were chickens! Since then they have bred and now are is three chickens for every person on the island - it's so funny isn't it, I was cry laughing when I found out. Even parking was difficult because I had to keep waiting for chickens to get out of the way and at one point I had to stop for chickens to cross the road...and I still can't answer that age old question of why they were doing it haha.

I thought they were really cute because they're all very tame and just sleeping in the middle of the open, but if you have a chicken phobia then Kauai is definitely not for you!

My next step (after some food) was some waterfalls. 

I stopped at Opaeka'a falls. You can't walk around unfortunately - only 30% of Kauai is accessible by foot which is why I decided to book a helicopter tour for the day after tomorrow. I can't wait to get a bit closer to the waterfalls. 

Just across the road is Poliahu Heiau - this Heiau looks out over the Wailua river and beautiful scenery. It used to be the a structure for human sacrifice to the War God Ku and was built under the direction of the ali'i nui (the highest ruling chief). You can still see some of the ruins but the best bit now is the view.

The mound ^^ is where the old structure was, it's amazing to think it used to be filled with the chief's buildings.

After that I headed for some food and to the beach!

This spicy ahi poke bowl was great. When I travel on my own I don't really like to go out for meals because I do find it awkward so I was glad there was nice food to go places. I have to go out for food on my own for work and that's fine but if I do it when I'm away I just feel a bit sad...not to mention that Kauai is expensive.

Can't wait to show you more soon,


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