My friend, Laura, and I took the last week in March to explore this garden isle and relax. We did quite a bit of hiking, some swimming, kayaking, and hanging about. The place is beautiful, as you can see....
Monday we traveled East to West to get to Waimea Canyon, where we hiked along a cliff trail for 10 miles or so.
Laura has a wonderful way with people. Simply by asking why it was taking so long for our economy rental car to be prepared, we ended up with this convertible instead. We made do the best we could.
Here is a self-timed shot of the two of us overlooking the Waimea Canyon on the west side of the island.
In the same day, we saw bright sunshine, dark clouds, and rain. More than once, we found ourselves getting drenched and suntan at the same moment.
This particular spot was swarming with tourists, unloading from multiple buses to see the canyon. We did our best to blend.
These flowers caught my fancy, since they contained every pastel shade in the same bunch.
Here we are overlooking the Kalalau Valley.
Much of the trail looked like this, with so many different kinds of vegetation that we often wished we had our botanist-friend, Leslie, along.
We saw so many rainbows in Kauai -- many of them big, fat ones like this hanging low on the horizon. And yes, the ground really is that color. One of the main brands for T-shirts and beach clothing (about the only thing we could find on the island) is called "Red Earth" for this reason.
Here is a beach at Poipu we visited on the southern shore on our way back to Lihue on the East where we were staying.
Many of the trees had large, brilliant blossoms near their tops for pollenation by native birds. Since birds get to islands long before insects make the oversea migration (usually by boat), many plants adapt themselves for bird-pollenation.
Tuesday, we rested from the strenuous day before. Laura went for a walk along a nearby beach while I went in search of the perfect swimming hole. (I found two.) In the evening, we dined and watched the sunset from the Princeville Hotel.
Wednesday, we traveled to the north shore to hike along the famous Kalalau Trail. It was beautiful, but quite muddy and difficult.
On our last full day, Laura kicked back at the hotel while I did a little kayaking up the Huleia River.
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