Everyone needs a vacation sometime and the island of Kauai in the Hawaiian Islands offers some cool adventures.
My girlfriend Kim Duess and I had a beachfront cottage in Hanalei Bay, one of the most beautiful spots in the world. In the ocean, kite surfers sped by and we discovered a couple of turtles snacking on the reef. So cool.
On our second day, we headed off to the world famous Kalalau Trail. It follows the Napali Coast and offers hikers spectacular views all along the 17.7-kilometre route. We traversed the first part to Hanakapi’ai Beach and then up into the valley to experience the 61-metre Hanakapi’ai Falls.
The trail climbs steeply for the first 40 minutes and offers awesome views of the thick, lush forests and the light blue water. They made the hot rocky trail worth it. At Hanakapi’ai Beach the ocean looked so tempting, however, the sign displaying the number of people killed at this spot, caught in the ferocious rip tides kept me at the water’s edge.
After a snack, we hammered on up into Hanakapi’ai Valley and enjoyed the giant bamboo and rich aroma of fresh flowers. The roar of water seemed closer as we walked and as we rounded some cliffs we were rewarded with a huge waterfall — like those you see in romantic movies — with a pool of fresh water at the bottom. I jumped in, runners and all, and swam directly under the falls. The huge water droplets pounded me as I swam in and out of the falls and finally retreated into a tiny cave behind them. We spent the afternoon swimming, eating and sunning our bodies on the cool lava rock before heading home for a sunset barbecue.
Over the next few days we kayaked up the Wailua River, explored Waimea Canyon and surfed off the rocky shores of Poipu. After each epic day we would just sit back with a cold one and enjoy the magical sunsets with a big smile on our faces. Isn’t it time you took a vacation?
Columbia Willamette Water Cap
Description: Keep the heat and harmful rays of the sun off your head with Columbia’s Willamette Cap. Pre-curved visor, elastic back adjustment and super-light mesh panels for venting. Price range: $14.99
Where to find it: www.columbiasportswear.com
Description: You’ll be ready for any summertime adventure with these unique sandals from Keen. The EVA midsole provides comfort while the polyester webbing and adjustable bungee closure will keep your foot in place and out of the water. Price range: $115
Where to find it: www.keencanada.ca
Description: This simple daypack from Salomon is one of the lightest on the market at only 15 ounces. It will carry all your extra food and clothing as well as your safety gear for a full day out on the trails. The harness system is comfortable and the lightweight material breathes and dries fast. Price range: $89
Where to find it: www.salomonsports.com
Description: This ultimate cooler keeps your drinks cold in the waterproof compartment and has a detachable AM/FM radio and includes an audio input jack for your iPod and speaker headset jack. It also comes with a retractable handle with rugged wheels and will collapse flat when empty for easy storage. Price range: $75
Where to find it: www.picnicfun.com