Lucky for us, we had an excuse to go back to visit Hawaii just a few months after moving away. Our friends Gina and Kaipo were getting married on 11-11-11, and we had promised them we would attend. We decided to spend the first 5 days on Kauai. It was the romantic get-away we never got around to when we lived in Hawaii. We had taken the family to Kauai a few years before, and we fell in love with this beautiful island! We stayed on the North Shore, which is so lush, green, small, quaint, and quiet. Perfect for lazy days wandering around, taking it all in. Here is one of my favorite towns on Kauai, Hanalei.
When we had visited before, there were so many things we wanted to do, but were encumbered with little kiddos. One of the first things we did was set out for Queen's Bath. It is not marked very well, and we were not prepared for the treacherous hike down. We were wearing our swimming suits and flip flops, with a towel around our necks. As we started down, we saw people with back packs, hiking boots and hiking sticks. That should have been a tip off right there, but no, we just kept going. Pretty soon we were falling and slipping all over the muddy, steep trail. It follows a little river, with a few waterfalls. At one point I slipped in the mud, and nearly fell over the 20 foot ledge, but a kind stranger nearby grabbed me before I fell. That'll get your heart pumping! Here is Chris posing at one of the many waterfalls.
Once we got to the ocean we could see why it is called Queen's Bath. There are huge tide pools that have warm water and are teeming with fish and crabs. It was incredible. Definitely one of the highlights on Kauai.
It was a little weird to have fish come up to you and start nibbling on your toes. They were totally unafraid of people.
On the way back up the trail I figured out that if I washed off my flip flops every once in a while, I wouldn't slip as much on the mud that would accumulate on them.
One day we drove until the end of the road on the west shore. After a 10 mile dirt road we came upon this amazing beach. I wished we had brought our suits and towels. It was beautiful with the turquoise water, white sand, and the Napali Coast behind us.
Here is Chris taking advantage of the pools at our resort.
Here I am waiting patiently for my world famous Kauai Waffle.
It was well worth the wait! A Belgium waffle with papaya and banana, topped with whipped cream, toasted coconut, and macadamia nuts, drizzled with coconut syrup. Heavenly!
The views are incredible at every turn.
The last 2 days were spent on Oahu for Gina and Kaipo's wedding. It was in the most beautiful venue at a golf club on the Windward side of the island. Here is the new Mr. and Mrs. Konishi.
Ok, I feel the need to explain why I look like a drowned rat. We had flown in from Kauai early in the morning, and we went straight to a little dive of a restaurant famous for their banana and macadamia nut pancakes. It was super crowded, and we had to wait an hour, outside in the wind and rain. We ended up taking our order to go so we wouldn't miss the wedding, and YES it was worth it. They were the BEST pancakes EVER. Needless to say, by the time we got to the wedding I was a little soggy and cold.
Here is Chris with some of his old co-workers.
Our last day on Oahu was spent visiting our old favorite places. Even though we have now lived in Colorado for more than 4 months, Hawaii still feels like home. It was nice being so familiar. We drove around the island stopping at all our favorite sight seeing spots, restaurants, and shopping places. We stopped at the blow hole and got a ton of pictures for Masen, who STILL (almost daily) asks to go see the blow hole.
Chris' King Kamehameha pose :)
Dinner at Morton's!
Sunset in Honolulu.
It was such a fun trip, and went by way too fast. After a week away from my kids though, I was ready to jump back into my real life. A big Mahalo to Grandma Carol for watching them for us, to make this little get away possible!