A few months ago we were lucky enough to carve out some time for our Big Anniversary and decided to go to Kauai and the big island of Hawaii and explore islands that we both had not traveled to. Like most people, at least from what I’ve heard, wind up on Honolulu as their first experience. The majority of people don’t like the congestion of the island of Oahu. I don’t mind it, it just depends on what you prefer.

We flew direct to Kauai, “The Garden Isle”and the name doesn’t disappoint. Truly one of the most beautiful landscapes I’ve ever seen. This is the first of the Hawaiian islands in this Pacific archipelago. We stayed on Poipu Beach area, at the Grand Hyatt. which is about a 30 minute drive. The property is an older hotel, however, with a quintessential island feel and the service excellent. The hotel is a relaxing, quiet property excellent for rest and relaxation. The general feel of the entire island is relaxed which is what we needed in a big way!

View from Grand Hyatt Kauai

Eating on Kauai

While we were enjoying our Anniversary stay, we also celebrated my husbands birthday. We were lucky enough to be really close to Keoki’s Paradise. If you are in this area, please have a meal here. Everything is just delicious; here’s a snap of the Kalbi Beef Bao 👇🏻. And you MUST make room for the Hula Pie. It’s one of the specialties there. But before I tempt you with dessert we enjoyed the freshest fish for dinner – I had a Panko and Macadamia nut crusted fish of the day and my husband had the Ginger Cilantro Steamed fish. In short, loved this restaurant!!

Keoki's Paradise- KALBI BEEF BAO
Hoisin-ginger braised short rib, kim chee cucumber namasu, cilantro, pickled mustard seed
Keoki’s Paradise- KALBI BEEF BAO
Hoisin-ginger braised short rib, kim chee cucumber namasu, cilantro, pickled mustard seed

We decided to go to Princeville, in the northern coast of the island a couple of days later. The weather is very different from the southern side. I would venture to say the south side seemed sunnier and the north, a bit more rainy. By the time we got up to the North side, we were starving. We were sitting in a little bit of a traffic jam due to road improvements, and we stumbled upon The Dolphin in Hanalei. It was raining but we decided to sit outside to take in the views of all the waterfalls on the mountains in our view. Wow! Just wow! We savored some amazing Poke bowls in the process. 🙂

The Dolphin in Hanalei
The Dolphin in Hanalei

The helicopter

We managed to see so much in a week’s time but the definite highlight of our trip was the helicopter tour of the island. A helicopter ride seemed rather daunting and I’m not going to lie, we were really nervous. Our good friends had stressed that this was the only way to appreciate the island. And they were spot on. I’m not going to bother you with carrying on and on about how beautiful the island is. I think you understand that, however I will give you a snippet of my view for a couple of minutes as we were above the Na Pali Coast.

Helicopter ride of Na Pali coast

I apologize about the noise of the helicopter , but just wow right?? What a spectacular treat this was and a very memorable one at that!! This birds eye view of this part of the island is just amazing. Hovering over these peaks was just awe inspiring. What a beautiful world we live in!

In this same trip, we also visited the Big Island of Hawaii...check out our week there!

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