Remembering Our Honeymoon in Hawaii (Part 1)

Exploring Kauai, Hawaii

Bryan and I cannot believe we’ve been married for 1 year already. Wow. I’ve never shared photos from our honeymoon because honestly I took over 800 and combing through them was a daunting task. I did mean to post them. I promise! And here we are a year later—better late than never I guess. We’ve broken this post into 3 parts for each of the islands we visited. First up: Kauai, the most lush and gorgeous of the islands we went to (in our opinion).

Layover in Los Angeles, California

Walking around in our backpacks we got stopped by several residents wondering if we were backpacking the world!

Walking around in our backpacks we got stopped by several residents wondering if we were backpacking the world!

Layover in LA—we ventured to Manhattan Beach

Layover in LA—we ventured to Manhattan Beach

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Manhattan Beach, Los Angeles, California

Manhattan Beach, Los Angeles, California

Hiking to Secret Beach along Kauai’s North Shore

Secret Beach

Secret Beach

Our first stop in Kauai was Secret Beach. We parked our rental car in a parking lot that looked like a suburban neighborhood cul-de-sac and hiked about a mile down to the beach. I slipped and slid through the mud, almost losing my sunglasses. But I forgot about the caked mud on my right butt cheek once we made it to this wide tropical beach that was practically all to ourselves. Although, a fair warning to the future traveler, as we walked further towards the end of the beach we did run into quite a few nude sunbathers!

Secret Beach—all ours!

Secret Beach—all ours!

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Bryan and I were in awe at how the tropical rain forest seemed to run right up to the beach edge and end so abruptly, giving away to the golden sand. The ocean waves at Secret Beach were popular with expert surfers as the waves were high and crashed onto the rocks. Bryan and I didn’t venture in for a swim for fear of being swept away by a rip current or rammed into the rocks that lined the shore. We did however, do some great glamour shots of ourselves.

A classic thinking pose

A classic thinking pose

The risks of getting the perfect picture. We do it for the ‘gram.

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Eating Our Weight in Tropical Fruit and Getting to Know the Locals

Our first breakfast in Hawaii was the first of many meals filled with delicious tropical fruit picked at peak ripeness. You cannot get as good of pineapple in Virginia as you can in Hawaii, so we made sure to take advantage of it while we could. We also got to know the locals very well in Kauai—chickens. They’re everywhere. I think there may be more chickens roaming around than squirrels. They especially enjoyed trying to eat our food and had no qualms with jumping on an empty seat next to you to join your meal.

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Smoothie bowls, fresh baked banana bread, and iced coffee…basic, but so freaking delicious

Smoothie bowls, fresh baked banana bread, and iced coffee…basic, but so freaking delicious

Gecko disappointed we didn’t want to switch our insurance

Gecko disappointed we didn’t want to switch our insurance

A hungry local looking for his next meal

A hungry local looking for his next meal

Biking Along the Royal Coconut Coast in Kauai

One of the highlights of our trip was renting bicycles and biking along the Royal Coconut Coast on the east side of the island. It was extremely windy, but we were treated to views of tropical coast varying from violent waves hitting rocky cliffs to calm beaches with sunbathers soaking in some rays.

Along the Coconut Coast

Along the Coconut Coast

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Livin’ It Up at Hanalei Bay Resort

We stayed at an AirBnb at the gorgeous Hanalei Bay Resort. We loved our condo and neighborhood. We ran along the cliffs overlooking Hanalei Bay in the morning, lounged by the pool and enjoyed drinks at the swim up bar, and rented stand up paddle boards to try our luck at catching some waves in the bay. We didn’t take too many pictures of our adventures at the resort—we were too busy enjoying it, but below are some photos from our time there.

The neighborhood we stayed in

The neighborhood we stayed in

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Kawaikini Peak is Kauai’s highest point at 5,148 feet and has been known as the wettest spot on Earth, with over 400 inches of rain per year! We only caught a brief 5 minute glimpse of the peak…it was covered with clouds and rainfall the entire rest of our time on the island

Kawaikini Peak is Kauai’s highest point at 5,148 feet and has been known as the wettest spot on Earth, with over 400 inches of rain per year! We only caught a brief 5 minute glimpse of the peak…it was covered with clouds and rainfall the entire rest of our time on the island

A little birdie by our AirBnb balcony

A little birdie by our AirBnb balcony

View from our balcony

View from our balcony

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Beach by our resort

Beach by our resort

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Exploring Kilauea Point’s Wildlife Refuge and Lighthouse

Kilauea Point, a refuge for Hawaii’s state bird, the nēnē, or the Hawaiian Goose

Kilauea Point, a refuge for Hawaii’s state bird, the nēnē, or the Hawaiian Goose

The Kilauea Point Lighthouse

The Kilauea Point Lighthouse

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Check out those wave crashes!

Check out those wave crashes!

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A view of Secret Beach from the Lighthouse!

A view of Secret Beach from the Lighthouse!

Baby bird

Baby bird

 

Boating Along the Na Pali Coast

We also took a boat ride along the Na Pali Coast. We fought some rough waves, but had a blast seeing the gorgeous coastline and even watching dolphins swim along our boat! Our favorite story was while passing the Honopu Valley. It is said former chiefs were taken there by a warrior from the chief’s tribe. The warrior would climb down the cliff side and bury the King’s body in a cave. Once he finished burying the King he would then dive off the cliff to his death in the valley below in order to keep the chief’s burial site a secret.

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Taking in the Views at Waimea Canyon

The last thing we did on Kauai was view the Waimea Canyon. This was the most breathtaking canyon I’ve ever viewed. There were so many colors and waterfalls. Looking back on my photos I took so many pictures of the same views because I could not get over how gorgeous it all was!

Waimea Canyon

Waimea Canyon

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Spoiler alert: Kauai was our favorite island. We did enjoy our time exploring the other islands as well—they all have their own personality—but Kauai won our hearts as being the island with the most lush vegetation, breathtaking views, outdoor adventures, and less tourists than other popular islands. We plan on venturing out to this island again to hike the Na Pali Coast. Anyways, we would love to hear from you in the comments—have you been to Kauai? For all those who have been to Hawaii, what was your favorite island?