Most people think of this island as having three sides: North, South, and East. But what happened to West?! The West side of the island is mostly the Na Pali. Na Pali means "the cliffs" in Hawaiian. This is a vast roadless area dominated by cliffs that drop into the sea. This is a park now, but at one time hundreds, if not thousands, of Kauaiians lived in the area's hanging valleys. These were accessible only by sea and made for good hidey-holes in times of trouble. And since the vertical surfaces of the cliffs continue underwater, the fishing's probably pretty good. (Fish like vertical surfaces.)
We're staying on the South side of the island at Po'ipu. Princeville, on the North side, has a more hoitytoity selection of resorts, and it's much closer to the popular Hanalei Valley; but, we prefer the Po'ipu area as it's more centrally located. It's close to Lihue and pretty much equidistant from Waimea canyon and Hanalei. Also, the State beach in Po'ipu is one of the best snorkeling spots on the island, if not the best. Another attraction here later is in the year is return of the Humpback Whales to these waters. We saw quite a few last year, and a few scouts have already been spotted this week.
Hey Red! Didn't you describe the island as having three sides? What about inside and out; or inland and along the shore, to be more precise. Technically speaking, this would be another way to view the island, but the interior of the island is dominated by Mt. Wai'ale'ale. The mountain is the wettest spot on earth, receiving over 600 inches of rain each year. The interior is solid, roadless rain forest, so most people live along the shoreline.
More to follow later. Now we're off to find the black sand beach near the mouth of Waimea Canyon.
Thursday, November 16, 2006
Coming at you from Hawai'i this week! (I'm brashly assuming that "you" are actually reading this and that I'm not just talking to myself.) The Redcloak family is on the "Garden Isle" of Kaua'i. This is our third trip to this island in the last three years. More to come later; we're off to a lu'au.