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Monday, September 8, 2014

My Spectacular Summer Vacation on Kauai!

It’s September! Fall is here and there are so many things to be excited about. The leaves are changing colors, in many parts of the world and kids going back to school. Seems like it was only yesterday when we started our Spectacular Summer Vacation Countdown on Kauai and when we think about all our Friends who visited Kauai this year AND chose Kauai Vacation Rentals & Real Estate, Inc to help them create an amazing, fun-filled vacation… we grow great big smiles on our faces!

And what a summer of Fun!  Water Adventures, Hiking the Great Outdoors, Relaxing and Unwinding on Kauai, Fun Kauai Nights, and Your Next Kauai Adventure! Days upon days upon nights were spent exploring, having Fun, and celebrating well deserved time off on one of the most beautiful islands in the world!

A great part of all the Fun for us is reading the comments our Friends post on our Facebook wall and the messages they share on Twitter! Like, when one Friend sends to another, “I want YOU to meet me on Kauai!” – and then we get to watch their Friends start assembling their vacation plans right in front of our eyes J And when they call us to book a home, cottage, condo or villa…it’s like we are already part of their vacation!

Today we are sharing a Fun story from one of our Facebook Friends who just got back home after vacationing on the South Shore! She talks about reading our posts and how they kept her and her family excited for their trip and how they look forward to staying with us on their next vacation!

Fall and winter holidays are just around the corner and next month we are sharing information about Kauai’s great golf courses. We also invite you to check out our website and browse for an accommodation you can call you VERY own vacation destination!

My Spectacular Summer Vacation On Kauai!

Ahhhhh.  Just thinking about my vacation makes me want to head back to the airport tomorrow morning! I spent 6 days on the South Shore in August and every day felt like I won a dream vacation right out of a magazine! 

I am a single mom who works around the clock and rarely takes time for vacation. And every day this year I kept seeing these awesome photos posted by Kauai Vacation Rentals & Real Estate, Inc and sometimes I would just sit in front of my computer screen rubbing suntan lotion on my arms while drinking iced tea with a little umbrella poking out above the rim of my glass. Then I would close my eyes and imagine myself stand up paddle boarding while Poipu Beach glistens in the background.

Then it dawned on me.  I CAN BE THAT PERSON in the photo!  I WANT to go to the Hukilua! I AM the woman sitting on the boat gliding through paradise watching my kid’s hair blowing in the wind. So without hesitation I called my mom and said “how would you like to go to Kauai with me and my daughter?!?!” 

She howled with excitement and set the phone down suddenly and, before I knew it, she was walking through my front door!  (She lives close by!)  She was already wearing her sun hat talking about the movie “South Pacific” and with that burst of excitement I became even more excited!  The days flew by as we started planning all our adventures, and thanks to all the Fun things Kauai Vacation Rentals & Real Estate, Inc shares on Facebook, we knew a fantastic vacation was about to unfold! 

And oh how fun it was!  When my Friends at Kauai Vacation Rentals & Real Estate, Inc asked me to share my “Top 5 Highlights” from my Spectacular Summer Vacation on Kauai, I did not hesitate. Believe me, if you are looking for a great vacation destination to please a child under 10, a grandma/mom over 70, and a business woman over… eh… well let’s just say “forever 30”… Kauai should be at the top of everyone’s list! 

Highlight 1:  Being Flexible on Island Time!

Before getting to Kauai, I researched lots of Fun things to do and I made a list. Then when I got to Kauai, I just decided to “let each day happen.” That means on some days I got to rise with the sun and meditate and do yoga on the beach. Other days, my daughter woke me up with her own list of things she wanted to do. 

Every day we had options, like Kauai Backcountry Tubing at the former Lihue Plantation, a day at sea with Captain Andy’s Na Pali Coast Tour, and spending time in the glorious sun at Poipu Beach. Yes, the “organizing” side of my brain wanted to plan every moment and every meal in advance – and somehow, letting it all go and “flowing” day-to-day made this Kauai vacation extra special. I know my family and I will remember it forever!

My vote: Be flexible and let things happen! It is Kauai time!


Highlight 2: SNUBA!®

Seriously, I had never heard that word before nor did I know what it was until we got there. What a blast!

SNUBA® is a cross between “snorkeling” and shallow water “scuba” – without the need to get certified or having to be an expert underwater diver! For me, that means grandma could have an underwater swim with my daughter and me while being expertly watched by a SNUBA® instructor/guide. 
The website says it is like swimming in a giant aquarium surrounded by tropical fish. It was more like exploring “under the sea” where we would expect to find Ariel (the Little Mermaid) and her underwater friends Flounder and Sebastian. It was so much Fun and the activity includes expert instruction with the convenience of always being 20 feet away from the “security” raft floating on the surface.
My vote:  Thumbs up for family Fun for all ages!

Highlight 3:  Catamaran on Na Pali Coast

Captain Andy knows how to deliver a great time! Trip Advisor ranks it the #1 in tourist attractions on Kauai and getting to see parts of the island that are inaccessible by car made us feel like we were on an adventure, custom-made for us! 

The activity’s official website says “This fifteen-mile stretch of rugged coastline on the northwest shore of Kauai literally means "the Cliffs." Much of Na Pali Coast is inaccessible due to its characteristic sheer cliffs that drop straight down, thousands of feet into the ocean. Sailing, rafting and hiking are the best ways to experience Na Pali's myriad of natural wonders.”

I am so glad we took this tour! We saw dolphins, Flying fish, and everywhere we looked there were amazing views!

On this trip we took the Sunset Cruise, which is great because we got to see Kauai lit up by the twilight sun. There is also a daytime cruise that can be paired with snorkeling, which is exactly what we will be doing for sure on our next trip!

My vote:  Stunning scenery a GREAT way to see the beauty of Kauai : - ) 

Highlight 4: Surf Lessons and Poipu Beach

I was determined to learn how to surf on this trip and my daughter was like, “you’re doing it – I am doing it!” So we were excited to book with Kauai Surf School

The waves on the South Shore were perfect and the instructors are very friendly! This school is great for people of all ages and although my mom didn’t hang ten on the surf board, she had a great time taking lots of pictures!
After our day of surfing, we took time to “relax” and kick back on Poipu Beach. I did the research and the tips Kauai Vacation Rentals & Real Estate, Inc share on Twitter are true! It is a GREAT beach for families! Body surfing, snorkeling, and the shallow protected area is ideal for kids. We had turtle sightings every day and the Nukumoi Surf Shop across the street is convenient for water shoes or anything else you may need for a day at the beach!

My vote:  The instructors at Kauai Surf School are awesome and Poipu Beach is also a perfect spot for sunrise yoga and morning runs!

Highlight 5: Good Drive and Stops

I love that we rented a car on Kauai. It really gave us the ability to do whatever we wanted and Enjoy our vacation “family time.”  Another highlight is the 2-mile hike we took at Shipwrecks Beach.  It is part of the Mahaulepu Heritage Beach Trail.

According to the website: it is the last stretch of undeveloped coastline on the South Shore. The Mahaulepu Heritage Beach Trail is a great coastal hike that takes you from the southeast corner of Shipwrecks Beach / Keoiloa Bay along sand-dune cliffs, Kiawe trees, limestone formations and rocky inlets where you can see sea turtles and Hawaiian Monk Seals.

My photo on the right shows the terrain and I want to say… when you are standing here, you feel a majestic sense of peace and tranquility that makes you feel like you are really on vacation in a place far from the routines back home.

Another great spot we visited is Spouting Horn. Also on the South Shore, waves push water through a rock formation and water then sprays up into the air, like a Hawaiian Old Faithful. Nearby shops are totally cute and a great place to buy souvenirs and jewelry, which I am wearing now!  : - )

Then there is Wailua Falls. The beautiful water flowing overhead made me feel like I was in the opening shot of “Fantasy Island!” The plane, the plane! The double waterfall is magical!

My vote: Rent a car. It will allow you the freedom to fully explore Kauai!

Already Looking Forward to My Next Trip Back!

I have been home for about 2 weeks now and every morning when I wake up, I think about the smile on my face, my daughter’s face, and my mom’s face.  Kauai is a wonderful vacation destination with hiking and activities we all Enjoyed. In the back of my mind, I pictured Kauai as a perfect place to chill, kick back on the ocean, and do nothing. Well…. There was certainly “chill” time, and there are also plenty of FUN activities for everyone – and being outdoors spending quality time with my family was a reward and a spectacular treat.

We did “chill” one day, and for the most part I started my day at 6 AM with yoga, then did a big activity at 9 AM or 1 PM or 3 PM (that's when the tour-type things leave). I probably spent at least 2 hours a day in the pool or at the beach. And yes, we definitely found time for shopping!

We love Poipu Shopping Village and The Shops at Kukui'ula Village, where we bought clothes, souvenirs, and ate some fabulous meals. I would say I was pretty active on this 6-day holiday and I still found time to read, take a nap, and keep my 10-year old moving and having Fun.

I now know where I want to vacation every chance I can! My daughter wants to move there and says it was the best trip ever. She basically lived in the water and even though our schedule was busy, it didn’t feel over programmed. In fact, it was exquisitely perfect.  : -)

Now, the memories of making leis, taking hula lessons, feeding koi, surfing, snuba’ing, shopping, tubing, and hiking have me smiling and counting the days till our next visit.
I am looking forward to Kauai any time of year!

Things to See and Do on Kauai in the Next Few Weeks!

Enjoy a Culinary Romp Through Paradise
Ready for a mouth-watering meal made of fresh, local ingredients? Then join us for a unique culinary romp through paradise, led by Marta Lane. This wonderful tour introduces you to some of Kauai’s food growers and makers. Stroll through an exotic fruit orchard, taste local seasonal fruit, and meet executive chef Guy Higa during a cooking demonstration.

Stroll through an exotic fruit orchard, taste local seasonal fruit, and meet executive chef Guy Higa during a cooking demonstration. 

Enjoy a four-course gourmet meal that is made from local Kauai ingredients! Meal choices change seasonally and have included Kauai Fresh Farms Grilled Eggplant and Lettuce Salad with Chef’s Garden Herbs Vinaigrette; Kaneshiro Farms Crispy Pork Belly Plantation Style; Kauai Shrimp with Wailua Herb Butter and Fresh Pasta; Passion Fruit Panna Cotta with Poha Berry Sauce.

The tour concludes when you meet either the distiller or brewer and learn about artesian rum and beer while you drink handcrafted Kauai cocktails!  
Tickets are $140 and more info is available here!

Photo: Tasting Kauai

Check out the Kauai Mokihana Festival!

Get ready for the week-long celebration of Hawaiian culture, staring September 21st!
Music, a hula competition, a craft fair, and workshops are happening throughout the island. Sounds like fun?
Grab tickets and additional information, here!

Photo: Kauai Festivals

Next Month We Celebrate Kauai’s Wonderful Golf Courses! 

Thanks for visiting us today!  We look forward to seeing you soon here on the Garden Island!

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