Our last part of our twenty-day vacation ends with us in Kauai. Again, we chose to rent a car so we can explore on our own. At the car rental we saw our first of many many roosters and chickens. You will see them pretty much everywhere in Kauai be prepared. So with our Mustang top down we take off to our hotel. We chose to stay at the Princeville St. Regis which is approximately and hours drive. There are several beaches and beautiful views to see on the scenic road to our destination. Upon entering the Princeville area you feel like you have entered a timeshare/condo complex with a wonderfully maintained golf course. At the end of this avenue is the hotel. It was a busy weekend, being Memorial Day, so there were a lot of families checking in. Our room was not ready for us so we chose to have a nice glass of wine looking out over the ocean. They have a very large gathering area with windows ceiling to floor so you can enjoy the view. This is also where many gather to watch the sunsets, so grab a seat early.
To be disingenuous with my writing would not benefit anyone. Therefore, here are my thoughts and opinions on the St. Regis Princeville, some bad, some good. I was not impressed at all with our check in process. We were a little early so our room was not ready but were soon called on our cell phone. After getting our keys we were left on our own to navigate the hotel. No instructions, which you do need for this resort- two elevators were needed to reach our room. We received no information on the restaurants, pool, extra activities, et cetera. Our room, oceanfront was standard quality but nice and clean. I was disappointed that there was no balcony but we did have a pretty view.
The pool area is spacious however there is no adult pool. Their pool bar drinks and food was delicious, they make a good Blue Hawaiian, yum! However, updating is needed. The pool chairs are old, peeling and moldy underneath. Replacing these and the umbrella stands along with a good cleaning of roofs that overhang in the area would really help the area look more inviting.
The beach was lovely, mountain views and lots of different water activities. When you head out the door from the hotel go down to the right. Here you will find a black lava boulder beach. We enjoyed an afternoon on this beach after purchasing a few beach chairs in Hanalei sit right in the water between the boulders. While on Kauai we even managed to get in some more golfing, making Kevin a happy man.
We explored the island pretty much from one end to the other throughout our stay. Zip lining; twice now and I feel like an expert! Taking off from there to do a little shopping in a near plaza we met a salesman who was very informative on some of the off beat things we could do during our stay. So off we went stopping at what he called was the “Mayberry” of Kauai. This is the town of Hanapepe. “The Thorn Birds” and “Flight of the Intruder” were filmed here if that helps with the visual. Next a ride up into the Waimea Canyon, be patient and give your self plenty of time to maneuver the winding roads, this is not for the individuals who have a problem with car sickness. Once you get way, way up the mountain you will see for yourself it was worth it! We were just at the Grand Canyon in March and I would say Waimea is a mini one but with one difference- the visual colors! It looks “rainbow-ish”!
We discovered and enjoyed many sights just driving around in our car. The Kilauea Lighthouse with its wildlife sanctuary was a must stop since I love birds! We were not disappointed to see so many Ā (Red-footed booby), Mōlī (Laysan albatross), ‘Ua ‘u kani (Wedge-tailed shearwater) and we even spotted a ‘Ilio-holo-i-ka-uaua (Hawaiian monk seal)! Little intimate beaches can pop up anywhere too.
The next excursion we ventured out on was the Hindu Temple. As you are making your way to the Kauai Aadheenam you will drive through residential areas but don’t worry you’re on the right track. Being our first time to a temple we really did not know what to expect. Entering the area you have instructions to wrap in a sarong that are provided. You are encouraged to write any cares, concerns or burdens on paper to be placed in a cauldron to burn away.
There are beautiful gardens, informative displays, statues and fountains to view. To enter the temple you must remove your shoes and there are no cameras allowed. Take your time reading about Hinduism and don’t miss the view of the new temple that is presently under construction. Be sure to visit their store to purchase a few rudraksham beads come from the utrasam trees grown there.
This particular vacation was a celebration for our 35th wedding anniversary and my wonderful husband did not miss a step in making sure this was spectacular in every way. Including the private dinner in a gazebo on St. Regis’s own beach. The night included lots of candles, leis made from orchids, gorgeous sunset, a delicious meal and our own private butler. We finished off with dessert in their restaurant that we had all to ourselves. This was a very special and a lovely night I will always remember.
Hawaii was a wonderful trip. We enjoyed each of the islands we visited this trip; Hawaii, Lanai and Kauai. Looking forward to returning and having more wonderful experiences with wonderful people.
A hui hou!