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At the top of Hanalei 'Okolehao Trail

The Hanalei River winds toward Hanalei Bay.

Whale watching from the lighthouse at national park in Princeville.

How lucky are we to have a personalized tour guide/driver here in Kauai? Thank you Barry! Our first morning he drove us to Ha’ena, the “end of the road.” This is where the highway ends a Wainiha Beach Park. We could have attempted the first mile or so of a straight uphill hike, but thought we might need better shoes so opted for a stroll on the sand.

Next, he drove us back toward Hanalei to the beach where he and Anne got officially married last summer. The two of them had spent two weeks of every summer here for the last dozen years, before finally deciding to just move here. And you can understand why!

The actual town of Hanalei is a funky surfside hamlet, peopled with friendly folks reminiscent of Humboldt County. Except here everyone can comfortably spend their days in shorts and flip flops.

(THIS IS THE SPOT WHERE I HAD INCLUDED SEVERAL PARAGRAPHS ABOUT THE INTERVENING DAYS, HIKE UP HANALEI TRAIL, ETC,  THAT WERE SWALLOWED UP IN CYBERSPACE. OH WELL!)

We rounded out the weekend with a drive over to the west(?) side of the island for views of the Waimea Canyon and a hike on the Alakai Swamp Trail. Red dirt, huge rocks, more sweeping views of impossibly steep mountains folding into the Pacific.

Yesterday finally got us into the water. We discovered Anini Beach where the waters lapped the sand with such calm I felt like I was sitting in a lagoon. The snorkeling wasn’t much to look at at Anini, but good practice since I haven’t put on a mask and snorkel since my last visit to Hawaii a decade ago.

Aaargh! WordPress just lost all the rest of this post! Just going to upload it now because I’m out of Internet time. Next stop:  Bali!

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