The end of an era in paradise…How to make Kauai work for a vacation or holiday…Two days and counting…Favorite Kauai photos…

The view from our lanai.

For those living in more beautiful places than Kauai, do tell me where you are and we’ll hope to visit someday soon.  For those living in barren, desolate areas, we appreciate the beauty of those places too.

The beach at Hanalei Bay.

Our hearts skipped a beat over the barren desolation in three countries in Africa, finding an indescribable beauty that will linger in our hearts and minds forever, hoping to return to Africa sometime in the future.

An albatross parent looking happy.

It isn’t always about ocean and mountain views, lush greenery, and blooming tropical flowers. It can be sand blanketed desert or rocky tumbleweed covered plains and the unique beauty is evident. 

An Eyebrowed Thrush we spotted in the yard.

Wherever we may travel, we find ourselves in awe of Mother Nature’s bounty of terrain and vegetation appropriate to a climate and elevation. How magical is that fact in itself? 

Anini Beach on a cloudy day.

As for Kauai, its truly a paradise and if scenery provides the traveler with a much needed respite from the rigors of daily life, Kauai is the place to visit. Many assume that it’s hard to travel to Kauai when in fact there are direct flights from some major cities. 

The dry caves at Tunnels Beach.

In the worst case, a short layover in Honolulu will result in a short 30-minute flight heading this way every few hours. Car rentals are reasonable, especially if booked online at such sites as We were able to rent a car in Kauai for under US $700 a month, surprisingly reasonable. (For shorter rentals, the rates may be slightly higher on a per-week basis).

Birdie added a lot of fun to our stay in Kauai.

Accommodations are plentiful in Kauai whether one chooses to stay in Princeville, Hanalei, Kilauea, Kapaa, Poipu, Waimea, or any of the other resort areas. Prices vary from as little as $120 a night to $1000’s per night.  Overall, most average rates are around $265 a night for a well-equipped condo that may include an ocean view. 

African Tulips bloomed and not bloomed.

By staying for a week or more with a full kitchen one can keep the costs at a reasonable level by cooking some of the meals. Our average cost for groceries has been under $50 a day as opposed to approximately $200 or more (for two) who may choose to dine out twice a day. 

Beautiful, the name escapes

Many condos with full kitchens are equipped with basic spices and condiments. Being able to avoid purchasing paper products, cleaning supplies and condiments keeps the costs at bay. It may be worth asking if any of these items are included in the rent.

A newly hatched albatross chick, nestled under a parent.

With our long one to three months stays in mostly houses, we have no expectations of the owners providing us with paper products, laundry and bath soaps, shampoo and cleaning supplies. However, these items may all be included for the one to two-week stay in a vacation property.

A Princeville shore.

Dining out is sketchy at best in Kauai. It’s important to check the reviews on TripAdvisor for restaurants in Kauai to decide what will fit your budget and food preferences. For us, there were few good options, mainly due to my way of eating.

A waterfall on the treacherous path down to the Queen’s Bath.  We can’t believe we made that hike!

Will we ever return to Kauai? The answer would be “yes” if we didn’t have so much world yet to see. At this point, we’ve seen so little of the world and have many plans in mind for the future which doesn’t include returning to Hawaii.

During our visit to the southern shore of Kauai, this horse seemed happy to see us.

Would we ever live in Kauai, if and when health requires we settle down, which, let’s face it, most likely will occur at some point? If that occurs, most likely we’d prefer more convenient access to competent medical care.  Who knows?  Preferably, we’ll be able to stay fit and healthy and when our final days near we’ll be situated in a favorite location for a 90 day or longer stint.

The Spouting Horn in Poipu.

Kauai is not necessarily suitable for those with chronic health conditions who may need frequent access to treatment and facilities which, if needed can be found an hour’s drive from Princeville in Lihue or perhaps taking a flight to Oahu. 

Rainbow Eucalyptus tree. 

We’ve spoken to some locals that travel to the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona for annual physicals and treatment and others who fly to Honolulu for care. That may be too cumbersome for long-term residents.

This Kauai sunset will remain a favorite.

If, as a traveler, walking is your preferred activity, Kauai offers the utmost in trails, designated sidewalks, beaches and tourist towns for some of the finest walking to be found anywhere. 

A clear pool of water at high tide.

If all one did when coming to Kauai was to walk, partaking in some of the many trails based on the level of fitness, and spent time gazing at the scenery, the sunrises, and sunsets, it would be an extraordinary and memorable experience. It isn’t necessary to spend much if any money on tours if one is on a budget and longs to visit Kauai.

This shot was taken on our hike down the steep path to Hideaways Beach.

We leave Kauai with happy hearts for an experience we’ll always cherish for its constant beauty and for the many friendships we’ve made and the memories we’ll always treasure.

                                                Photo from one year ago today, May 21, 2014:

We took this photo from a steep road on our way to Ribeira Brava in Madeira, Portugal. For more details from that date, please click here.

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