We had one day on Kauai to explore the rest of the island. We decided on breakfast in Hanalei (delicious) and then driving around the rest of the island. Our first stop after breakfast was Kilauea Lighthouse and seeing the bird sanctuary. We then made it to Waimea Canyon where we spent most of our time stopping to see the views. It looks so much like the Grand Canyon! We made it to the top of the Kalalau Valley lookout. It was so weird to think we were down there the day before. Our last stop before dinner was the glass beach. There were tiny bits of sea glass all over the beach. We treated ourselves to dinner at Duke’s in Lihue before catching our flight back to Oahu. Had such an amazing trip!
On Sunday we woke up early to get started on our long hike back. I definitely did not sleep well the night before as I was dreading the hike and I was worried about the little black kitten. He turned out to be totally fine, but I was still dreading the hike. Once again, at about mile 9 I think we were all pretty done. It was a gorgeous day and much hotter than the hike in so we went through all of our water and had to stop and refill at the rivers. We were thrilled to make it to the last river and see people! It meant we were almost back. I was so happy to get off that trail and see our rental car! We all took showers and had a ton of food in Hanalei. This is the second hardest thing I’ve ever done (only being trumped by the first time I did it). Such a fun experience, but we were all thankful to sleep in a real bed that night!
Day two started out with all of us being just a bit sore (maybe not so much Kyle) but the rest of us were feeling it. We made coffee and breakfast and then set out to explore! Our day consisted of checking out the the rocks at the end of the beach that had all sorts of things growing on them, walking the beach and visiting the caves at the end, lounging around camp (including in our tents when it decided to start raining) and then enjoying another beautiful sunset on the beach after it rained. We finished the evening by enjoying the stars. They were absolutely breathtaking. We also made friends with a black kitten. It took everything I had to not take him home with me. ❤
A few weeks ago, my cousins Bailey and Kyle came to visit Josh and I. It was deja vu as four years ago they came to visit to celebrate Kyle’s graduation from high school and Bailey’s graduation from college. This time, it was Kyle celebrating graduation from college and Bailey celebrating graduating with her PhD.
They spent a couple weeks each on Oahu, but the highlight of their visit for all of us was hiking the Kalalau trail. This would be the hike that Josh and I did as our first date here he tried to kill me. It rained the entire time, which made crossing three rivers rather interesting and terrifying. Luckily, this time we didn’t run into that issue!
We spent the days before buying supplies, organizing our packs and making sure we had everything we needed.
We left on Thursday evening and checked into our Airbnb in Princeville. It was close to the trail so we didn’t have to drive too far on Friday morning to get started. We ate dinner at Barrel Chicken in Hanalei and then prepared for the next day.
We got up at 3:30 AM to have coffee, finish packing and arrive at the trail early. It was dark out when we started so we were able to enjoy the sunrise.
We made it to the first river and I was happy to find that I could hop along rocks to cross (very different than the last time). We made friends with a rooster who decided to cross it with us.
Around mile 6 we made it to the second river and stopped to have a snack. I also changed shoes as my feet were killing me. We were really psyching ourselves up for mile 7 and crawler’s ledge. Good news, is it was not as bad as we thought it might be!
We finally made it! The last three miles seemed to take days. But we crossed the final river and spotted the beach. We set up camp, then went to the waterfall at the end of the beach to refill water, made dinner and enjoyed the most incredible sunset ever on the beach. Not bad for the first day!
Finally tried out Livestock Tavern for dinner last night! We’ve had delicious drinks at Livestock before but never dinner. The food was absolutely amazing and we cannot wait to go back!
On our third day we again started our day with coffee on the lanai and a beautiful view. We were up early as our adventure for the day was riding a mule down sea cliffs to the Kalaupapa peninsula.
We arrived to the barn, checked in, and were assigned mules for the day! I was assigned the same mule that I had four years ago! Tita and I had just as much fun this time :).
After we were all assigned and on our mules, we headed down the road to begin the 3.5 mile (and 26 switchbacks!) ride down the sea cliffs.
We were quite happy to give our bums a rest and enjoy the tour and beauty of the area.
After an amazing few hours, it was time to get back on our mules and start the long journey back up!
After a long ride back up, we said goodbye to our mules and went back to shower before dinner. We decided to go to Kualapu’u Cookhouse (our favorite breakfast place from other trips) as we heard they had an amazing dinner menu. It definitely did NOT disappoint. We had three really unique entrees and all shared everything. After dinner it was time for what we had all been waiting for….Hot Bread!! We got the works (strawberry, blueberry, butter, cinnamon, cream cheese). It was just as good as I remembered it to be!
On our first full day on Molokai we woke up to our incredible view of Maui. We sat and enjoyed coffee on our lanai and listened to the ocean. Quite the way to start our day!
After a our leisurely start, we packed up the car to drive towards Halawa Valley. Our first stop was Our Lady of Seven Sorrows, another Saint Damien church.
It started raining on us, so we got back in the car and continued on our journey! The drive there was breathtaking and as we got closer, it stopped raining and we had a great view of the Halawa Falls.
We arrived in Halawa Valley and headed to Kalani’s Farm. We chatted with him for a bit and then we were able to sign waivers and hike to the falls since we had already gone on a tour with him a few years ago. We had the trail to ourselves for almost the entire way. Unfortunately for me, there were a ton of spiders (which I do not remember from the last time) so Josh took the lead and was in charge of knocking down webs. We made it to the river crossing but it was still flowing pretty fast. We decided to play it safe and head back. Sad we didn’t make it to the falls but it was a gorgeous hike.
When we got back to the farm, Kalani showed us some of his flowers and gave us two different types of bananas…which turned into an incident for Josh. One of Kalani’s ducks saw that we had bananas and she started racing towards Josh (apparently they are her favorite thing). This turned into Josh running from the duck and her flying at him (I was in tears). We went ahead and shared some with her :).
We were ready for lunch after our hike so we stopped at Manae Goods & Grindz for the best chicken katsu I’ve ever had. We ate lunch and then went back to our place to change and prepare for the rest of our afternoon.
After lunch, we drove to the West side of the island to show Linda around. Our final stop of the day was Papohaku Beach for sunset. Once again we had the beach to ourselves. The waves break really late here so Josh spent most of the time chasing the perfect picture. He did an awesome job (please see his work below 🙂 ).
Our first full day was packed and we were exhausted. We reluctantly left the beach for our long drive back. We weren’t super hungry due to our late lunch, so we stopped in Kaunakakai for some ice cream for dinner (my type of dinner). Great way to end our day!
A couple weeks ago, Linda came to visit. This was her fifth trip to Hawaii so we decided it was time to venture off Oahu. We chose Molokai for a variety of reasons but mainly because of the book Molokai. She recommended it to me when I moved here the first time and after we visited, I couldn’t wait to go back with her. We left on Thursday evening and landed around 5:30 PM. We stopped at Saint Joseph Church (one of Saint Damien’s churches), checked in to our Airbnb (which was amazing), ran to the grocery store for coffee and snacks, and finished with dinner and live music at Paddlers Inn.