Kauai to do's

neffa3

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Princeville was nice. We stayed in Poipu. We drove around and went north to Nepali coast. I think if you hike Kalepa ridge you'll have to go to the SW side of the island and drive all the way north, even though it's close to Princeville. I was there about the same time you're going, last week in Jan, first week of Feb.
We're definitely going to head that way at least one day, as I want to hike down into Waimea canyon. I already had the trail on my list to "check out" per the reports I read the further you go they sketchier it gets. So we'll play it by ear.
I wouldn't do that Kalepa ridge if it was wet myself, much less with kids. It's basically right above Napali coast and a true knife ridge with some awesome lookouts.
Wet is what I heard as well. We've traversed a few in the mts with some pretty severe pucker factors. But again we'll play it by ear.
Bird hunting on that island would be great. I suspect you'll be wishing you had a suppressed .410, or just a high end pellet rifle/pistol every day..
That is true, I was shocked when we were on Maui by all the chukar and pheasants.
20160409_173609.jpg
 

Western Traveler1

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Here’s a tip in general and not directed at you…
I suggest staying clear of participation in wind surfing as a novice. I can’t count the times I heard CG broadcasts of lost windsurfer searches. Trades come up and bye bye out to sea. Also swept off the rocks while fishing etc.
That place is a lot like unlearned city folks heading into the mountains when it comes to tourists.
 

Sam Colt

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If you're heading around south, hit JoJo's on the highway in Waimea for shave ice. That's the original one with the antique ice shaver.

If you're into history, tour Grove Farm. Might not be a thrill for the kids, but it's an interesting view of the life the early missionaries lived.

The best malasadas on the island used to be sold fresh out of the oil by Marlena from a cart outside KMart in Lihue, but that treat is long gone. The closest you can get now is to hit Village Snack Shop in Hanalei between 7:30 and 9. Remember, they are closed Wednesday.
 

neffa3

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Greenhorn

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land of smallish to average rams
Looks like a good one.

Re: the chopper ride. Lock them in the car for a couple hours. https://helicopters-kauai.com/
 

thebestusernamesaretaken

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I met and married my Wife in HI. She was born and raised there - local Haole. We honeymooned at the Princeville. The island is absolutely beautiful - we almost stayed.

Almost all of HI is crowded and touristy. Kauai is less so, but my fiends are telling me that even Kauai is getting crowded. Most people think of Kauai as more of a rustic island with just enough amenities to make it good. Traffic seems horrible but that's really because there aren't that many roads and everyone seems to be on the road all at the same time. To be honest Hawaii time helps with that as it tends to put people on the roads latter in the morning and earlier in the afternoon. Aloha Monday and Fridays are fairly normal where people would only work half a day if at all. There also has always been a strong culture of surfing and smoking weed as they were the only primary pastime for longest time with the locals who live there. All of this makes it hard to go to work I guess. I doubt that you will see too much of this at the resort.

You have some great ideas listed here.

Be prepared for rain, it's the wettest island. You may have Mauka showers every morning. When it does rain everything is flowing so it's time to take a road trip to see waterfalls (they are everywhere).

If the family likes to hike and take in scenery, take them to Waimea Canyon and Kokee State Park. Lots of trails. Perfect for a good day with a picnic. It will likely be about 10 degrees cooler up there than sea-level.

Be careful of climbing the lava rock it's not what you are used to in the Rocky's. The vertical stuff is fairly crumbly.

I have seen a lot of bloodied up tourist doing that downhill bike ride from the canyon. I don't know if it was due to lack of paying attention or what, but some folks seemed to get messed up on that road a lot. I'm not trying to scare you away but only telling you this so that you would know what to caution your kids with on the road. Elevation isn't that bad but you should pay attention to it if your diving.

Be aware that there isn't any large animals that can cause problems but the freaking bugs and some plants will try to punish you. The cockroaches even have wings and will fly into your face. Centipedes can send little ones to the hospital.

All rental cars are easily identifiable to the locals. Most of whom you will meet are fantastic people but there exist some general animosity towards mainlanders. Their only real economies are tourism and agriculture. Make sure you lock your stuff up.

Don't mess with the birds. You will likely come to hate chickens (and yes they fight them). It would not go over well if you put a prize bird in danger.

One of the wild birds is endangered and comes with a very hefty fine and likely jail time if molested or hurt in anyway. When I lived there these birds liked to nest on the 150 yard line of our riffle range. It was about $5k a bird back then.

Diving is fantastic. You can do shore dives and snorkel but diving is truly best to do from a boat. You can see humpback wales in the winter from your hotel room if your lucky but a boat tour could be more productive.

Be like a local for a while take your kids and eat some plate lunch at L&L. Make sure that you do it early if your kids drink the soda (that stuff has tons of sugar in it). Take your wife to Kimo's in Lahaina town and save room for hula pie (enough for two or eight). Kimo's is owned by Dukes which you may be more familiar with.

Aloha
 

Western Traveler1

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neffa3 you got me thinking about all the years I worked over there. Two things I miss aside from the laid back lifestyle and vibe of the locals. The Island sound (not the traditional) found on the local radio stations. Also the local food. Not L&L but the places tourists usually don’t find. Easier on Oahu, not so much on Kauai.
 

thebestusernamesaretaken

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neffa3 you got me thinking about all the years I worked over there. Two things I miss aside from the laid back lifestyle and vibe of the locals. The Island sound (not the traditional) found on the local radio stations. Also the local food. Not L&L but the places tourists usually don’t find. Easier on Oahu, not so much on Kauai.
Hawaii has a way of getting under your skin. We've been back to visit but left years ago to raise a family, but I still think of it as home. It has a way of kind of sneaking up on you in the oddest of places.

I took my family on a vacation through CA a couple years back (Huntington Beach, SF, SD, the Zoo, Disney, Universal etc.). We took a day trip out to the Santa Monica Pier where we found a displaced Hawaiian performing with an ukulele for the tourist.

He was intermixing some authentic less publicized Hawaiian and Polynesian music whenever he could in-between requests. We sat down and listened for three hours. My wife was in tears, the kids were confused and asked what’s wrong – I told them that she’s homesick and heartbroken. I tipped the guy a couple hundred bucks before we left and thanked him.
 
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Western Traveler1

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Messages
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The Front Montana
Hawaii has a way of getting under your skin. We've been back to visit but left years ago to raise a family, but I still think of it as home. It has a way of kind of sneaking up on you in the oddest of places.

I took my family on a vacation through CA a couple years back (Huntington Beach, SF, SD, the Zoo, Disney, Universal etc.). We took a day trip out to the Santa Monica Pier where we found a displaced Hawaiian performing with an ukulele for the tourist.

He was intermixing some authentic less publicized Hawaiian and Polynesian music whenever he could in-between requests. We sat down and listened for three hours. My wife was in tears, the kids were confused and asked what’s wrong – I told them that she’s homesick and heartbroken. I tipped the guy a couple hundred bucks before we left and thanked him.

Yep, this thread made my heart hurt. Blessed to have made friends with locals and their families.
Enjoying school aged street musicians on Kalakaua Avenue shredding on their ukuleles or sitting with a group of friends on the beach with theirs. Spent 6 months a year there traveling between islands for many years.
 
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