Kauai, Hawaii

We spent a majestic 11 days in Kauai, Hawaii for our honeymoon from May 14-May 24, 2018.  We went into our trip with a list of things people had suggested but no secure plans except our two hotels and a rental car.

East Shore

To Stay:

We have arrived! Seamless after 12 hours of travel. 10 days of just us. Our hotel, Kauai Shores Hotel, is right on the ocean with a restaurant in the sand. We can see the ocean from our balcony. We walked a little but we were so tired! We made a trip to Costco for all our bulk needs. We laughed that there is even a Costco here but it was a game changer because we got snorkel masks, sunscreen, and snacks. We drank pineapple bubbly and slept hard!

To Eat and Drink:

Our internal clocks have us up at 4 am this morning. Although a little cloudy, the sun shone through in glorious rays. We found Java Kai, a cute coffee shop in town. I could live in there! It’s all teal! I drank their in-house chai and did a watercolor quote in my journal.

Tacos Al Pastor food truck eat sprimp and fish tacos. We stopped at the side of the road to pick up a coconut. The milk wasn’t good but the meat was. 

Dukes for dinner and had the Hula Pie. Vanilla ice cream with hot fudge and macadamia nuts with a hard chocolate shell and cookie crust with whip cream!

The sun came out and we walked along the ocean. We saw crabs on the rocks and a sea turtle in the river under the bridge. As we walked a couple asked us to take their photo and commented on Joe’s Younglife shirt. They asked for prayers, a YL work crew van got in an accident and lost a life. We circled up and prayed right there! Marla Stacey from Austin, Texas. We went to the coconut marketplace and bought a tao croissant and Reuben croissant. We bought a soursop and avocado. The soursop inside resembled fish but it tasted sweet and sour! We posted up at the beach near our hotel. We fell asleep in the sand.

We ate lunch in the sand at Lava Lava , spinach salad and fish and chips. We planned out all the excursions we want to do. A sneak peek- Luau, rafting, and helicopter! I am so excited! We hung the Eno in the trees and ate our soursop, We fell asleep in there too. I think our bodies needed rest. Time is still weird.

We went to the beach before bed where the sky was clear and full of stars. Now that I have everything I want, what do I wish for?

We caught the shuttle to the Smith’s Family Luau. We took a tour around the 30-acre property, watched them uncover our dinner, a full pig! We sat with J + J, a couple on their honeymoon from Canada. We exchanged wedding stories and places to go while we are here. We ate so much! “We don’t eat until we’re full, we eat until we’re tired”. Poi(mashed taro), with a pico salmon salsa on top. Ahi, chicken, pork, stir-fry, and cucumber salad! Unlimited drinks and then the show! Makes me want to watch Moana, Just Go With It, Jurassic Park, and Lilo and Stitch! They danced many cultures, hula, drums, fire dancing. It was amazing and mesmerizing.


Refreshed! We packed our bags for an adventure south! First stop: Wailua Falls. We arrived in a cloud after twisty turns through the beautiful scenery. We hopped over the rock wall to get a closer look. We tried to stop at a humane society but it wasn’t open yet.

South Shore

To Eat and Drink:

Bobbie’s for lunch for “authentic Hawaiian”. Try the #7 Da Mean Box.

Joe bought coffee from Midnight Bear Breads and we ate the best macadamia nut cinnamon roll that we said we would save for later, but we ate it. 

Jojo’s shave ice, layers of amazing! Joe found his new favorite ice cream. With a macadamia nut ice cream base, mango and papaya shaved ice, and then topped with coconut creme. I like the shaved ice part best. The small was huge! We walked through Dirt Shirts(bought a sweatshirt) and devoured our delicious treat.

Kauai Coffe plantation next where you can try all their coffees, but I got an iced tea. Journaled and watched a lizard crawl around and painted a bouquet. Joe says the coffee didn’t taste good but it was a good experience.


We went to Glass Beach where we almost accidentally walked into sea lions. the entire beach was made of sea glass. they dumped a bunch of cars in the ocean and this beach is a result of it. Joe touched the tail of the sea lion and it barked at him. It reminded me of Finding Dory when they are on the rock.

A day chasing the sun! It was downpouring so we drove to Poipu Beach. It was shallow water with reef underneath. We saw many colorful fish swimming.

I felt more comfortable with the boogie board under me. I didn’t realize how afraid of fish I am. Joe fed the chickens and they wouldn’t leave us alone at the beach.


Waimea Canyon, the Grand Canyon of Kauai! Twists and turn as we made our way to the top. Stops overlooking the massive canyon. Above the helicopters going to see the waterfall. We were determined to find this waterfall on foot. From the top, we made our way down the canyon trail. We laughed that my little legs and arms usually couldn’t’ reach the next step or rock. Through much searching, we heard water. We found the start to the falls. We went further, we had to cross over the river waterfall and through thick forest to get where we headed. I fell and got cut up by thorns. When we made it, we were in awe. The top of the waterfall with a drop down the canyon. What we saw at the lookout was now under our feet. Made the entire hike worth it. We found it! Soaking in God’s creation.

 Early morning drive as the sun rose on the way to the south for adventure Boat Tour. We traveled all the way up the west side of the island. Through torturous waters, we hung on for dear life to ropes on the navy seals raft. We saw the Waimea Canyon, the army base, and the longest stretch of beach. We rode with multiple dolphins. Even baby dolphins! Saw a few turtles at a distance. we went into multiple caves, one we turned really fast into like a toilet bowl and there was a huge opening to the beautiful sky. Despite the butt rash I have now, the raft was fun. The Napali coast was beautiful. We saw many waterfalls. We stopped at a beach and walked a trail. We snorkeled in the reef for a bit and saw little fish. The way back was pretty brutal but we saw the bluest water. 

To Do:

Arius Hopman Gallery invited us to explore our inner child. Watercolors made from the natural colors of Kauai. We sat and painted our own masterpieces from volcanic earth pigments.

North Shore

To Stay:

The Cliffs at Priceville is so nice! We drive into a community with a giant fountain. We overlook the ocean with a kitchen and living room. Two baths, bedroom, 2 porches. Right next to the pool that has waterfalls and two hot tubs. We are living large! We went grocery shopping to save some money and utilize our kitchen. We at pizza and watched Moanna.

To Eat and Drink:

Travel day to the north store. Breakfast on the say at Kalea Juice Hale, we ate an acai bowl and drank coconut matcha. We were too early for the lighthouse so we walked into town to find Joe a toilet. While in town we found a pin and a mug! Good finds!

Hanalei Taro & Juice Co was a fun food truck with authentic Hawaiian food! I became obsessed with Taro while we were in Hawaii and they had a taro cake that was amazing. 

We stopped and journaled at Wishing Well Shave Ice where I got my hat and ate organic soursop shave ice.

Tahiti Nai for dinner, live music, and swordfish. This is the family that Derek knows, a community atmosphere. Joe said the Mai Tais were the best but I can’t drink them because I’m allergic to rum.

The most extravagant dinner we ever had. We went to St Regis and sat outside overlooking the mountains and ocean. A pool and palm trees next to us as we were elevated on the 8th floor. Our waitress was amazing, she brought us champaign and took our photo. We got the 3-course meal that came with a wine pairing for each course. An ahi appetizer, like deconstructed sushi with a white wine. The main course was steak and my first ever lobster tail! With a red wine. Finished with chocolate cover strawberries and smores tarted. We watched the sunset from the peninsula like cotton candy. 


Smoothies, egg sandwich(RIP plate), tea and devotionals on the porch. Packed up the cooler and headed to Hideaways Beach where you have to propel down a steep slippery mud hill to get to, but worth it! Small beach from coral pathways to snorkel! Joe went out a lot further than me and saw a sea turtle that was giant. A girl commented on my swimsuit that said “Just Married”(thanks Lara) and we started talking to them. Katelyn and Paul. The rain came in and we hit under the tree covering with them. We had so much in common. Our weddings were very similar, DIY flowers, hair, makeup, she used to be a recruiter, she does marketing now but used to work for Urban. We parted ways but invited them over to grill and hot tub. The similarities continued. It was a really fun night. I think it’s inside Joe and Ito host and be surrounded by people. We grilled salmon, cabbage, sweet potatoes, asparagus, and made drinks. The conversation was flowing! We met Hawaiians in the hot tub that told us more about culture and other islands. We watched 50 first dates and went to sleep.


Helicopter Day! What an amazing experience. The gift from my mom for our wedding, even though she already gave so much! We sat in the front seats. It felt like we were doing fly over America at MOA. Surrounded by lush greenery and waterfalls. We saw the waterfall from Jurassic Park and the volcano that formed the island. The coolest parts were seeing what we hiked and saw from the boar. We flew right up to the waterfall that we hiked to the top of. We could see the trail we took. We flew over the Napali Coast and saw everything from above. So beautiful. The highlight of the trip.

Kilauea Lighthouse! We met Minnesotans who took our picture.

Our top 5 Favorite things:

JoJo’s Shave Ice

Helicopter Ride

BBQ with new friends

Hideaways beach

Hiking Waimea Canyon

This was an adventure of a lifetime! Watch our video journal here: Youtube.com

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