In between our Utah and California ceremonies, Eric and I spend two amazing weeks on the Island of Kaua'i. After three months of house buying, moving, job finding, wedding planning and more we were SO ready to press pause on life and relax. Or at least I was. Eric wanted to climb every mountain on the island.
So we compromised ;)
For the first night we stayed at this sprawling estate vacation rental. Which was REALLY nice, don't get us wrong, but they hadn't been super upfront in their correspondence with Eric. We ended up having to stay in an older structure than they had promised, the pool wasn't lit, the owners were living right across from where we would be staying and there was tons of gecko poop in the house! So we decided on the second day to switch to a resort. BEST IDEA EVER. Click on Read more to continue reading!!
For the first few days we stayed at the Grand Hyatt Resort at Kaua'i. It had this network of organic looking pools all connected by a lazy river. The best thing about this place? The pools are open all night. ALL NIGHT.
Needless to say we took an impromptu midnight trip to the hot tub and, since we were in a tropical paradise, we floated down the river under the stars. I have to give this place like a bazillion stars.
For our first big hike we headed up to the Waimea Canyon. The car rental place had upgraded us to this sweet Jeep which we rode all the way up to view the Canyon. Talk about breathtaking. Eric said Mark Twain called it "The Grand Canyon in Technicolor," which it was.
If you drive up past the gorgeous lookouts to where the road ends you will find a great little hike. Following the trail, we wandered up to the top where there were several spectacular views of the epic Nā Pali Coast. The humidity was palpable so my hair got poofier and poofier as the day wore on! Which I didn't mind since usually my hair is all flat. ;)
Most of the beaches there are not that private and we were looking for a pristine beach with minimal noisiness. Eric's "Grampa Pann," gave us a great guide book, littered with post-it note suggestions. One of these suggestions was to check out the PMRF (pacific missile range facility) beaches. Since it is a military only Naval base, the beaches there are very quiet and clean.
I think Eric felt a little weird showing a uniformed guard his ID while in his swim trunks, but the embarrassment was worth it! Miles of pristine coastline, shining sun and best of all, no wind!! We spent a few days coming back to this beach and sunbathing, playing in the ocean, playing volleyball and watching the sun set. It was by far my favorite part of the island.
Once we got all finished with the relaxation part of the vacation we decided to move to a hotel on the eastern side of the island where more of the cool hikes and sights were. We moved in to the Courtyard Mariott at Coconut Grove. The streets in this area were lined with funky native shops and shack restaurants.
We had the most amazing food here. Coconut Shrimp at the Shrimp Shack, Shave Ice at the Ono Ono shack and Macadamia nut pancakes at the Ono Ono Family Restaurant and Teriyaki Burgers at Duane's.
Stay tuned for week two of Eric & Stephanie's Epic Hawaiian Honeymoon!
After 2 years of dating