Helicopter Tours Hawaii discount activities

The East Side of Kauai

Go on a Helicopter Tour
Go Deep Sea Fishing
Go for an ATV or 4WD Ride
Even Go To A Luau

We'll see ome of Kauai's best beaches and waterfalls today. Take Highway 56 - Kuhio Highway, North toward Kapa'a town. Kapa'a is in Kauai's largest population area, Kawaihau. Plenty of stores, shopping centers and little shops. Just keep driving - we have a lot to do today. We'll stop in Kapa'a on the way back.

Drive through town and witness again the beauty of the East coast of Kauai. You are driving past Mahelona bay - then across the Kealia bridge into Kealia, one of the longest stretches of sand on Kauai, as well as one of the seven beaches on Kauai with county life guards posted.

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Kealia Beach

A small jetty at the north end of the beach marks the former interisland steamer landing. Kealia was originally part of the Makee Sugar Company until 1934, when it became part of Lihu'e Plantation in a consolidation. Lihu'e Plantation continued to grow sugar until 1990, when it terminated operations on its 3,300 acres of agricultural land between Kealia and Anahola. The ahupua'a of Kealia (6,700 acres), including Kealia and Donkey Beaches, was sold by Amfac Land Company in 1998 to Kealia Plantation LLC.

Kealia was once a large settlement set up by the sugar plantation. This is one of the few "camps" on Kauai that was settled by mixed races. In general in Hawaii, the different ethic people grouped together and stayed in "Filipino camp" "Japanese camp" Chinese camp" and such. Kealia was different in that way, athough right up the hill was "Kumukumu camp" where only those of Chinese descent lived. Now we're headed for Anahola.

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Anahola Beaches and Scenery

Anahola Beaches and Scenery Around the 12 mile marker, you'll see a parking area on th ocean (makai) side. Park there and walk the 400 yards or so to the beach. We used to call this bay 10C, named for the sugar field just there. Now people call it Donkey Beach because of the mule and donkey pasture that was there right up through the eighties and ninties. Drive past thaht and you are coming up to the Hawaiian Homes lands of Anahola. Start down the hill, and before the bridge, turn right onto Kukuihale Road. Go all the way to the end till you arrive at Smith's Beach. This is a County run park. All are welcome. You'll find showers and comfort stations here, and the bay provides wonderful swimming and lounging out of the wind. Great for the children or just hangin' out. Across the bay to the left you can see the Anahola River Mouth and beach there. That's where we are going next.

Get back out onto the highway and turn right... Drive to the 14 mile marker, you'll see the Whaler's General store and the famouse Duane's Ono Char Burger. Try one of his Avocado Burgers. Believe me. Mmmmm. Just past the store, hang a right onto Aliomanu road and drive down to Anahola beach and river mouth. A safe place for the kids, isolated and quiet. You can drive all the way to the end of that road. Back in the old days, it used to go all the way through, but the bridge kept washing out so we finally gave up. Now the road comes in from both sides and ends at the stream. This is a glorious coastline and you will want to get out and swim and take some photos for sure.

Anahola Hole in the Mountain - Get back on the highway and turn right [North]. Drive up the hill about a mile and pull over next to the Hawaii Visitor's Beareau sign. You are looking at "The Hole in the Mountain." Several stories here, but legend has it that a giant (pelekunu) was so angry at not being able to invade Kauai, that he threw his spear right through the mountain. Off to the left of this natural wonder [which used to be bigger until after a huge rain back in the 70's, it collapsed) is the peak called "Kiko'o (meaning to stretch) - The movie industry has dubbed it "King Kong Mountain," but that's another story.

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Offroad Anahola to Kealia

Let's drive back toward Kapa'a. You can drive on the main road and get back to the 10 mile marker where I'll pick you up again, but if you want to be a bit adventurous, then do this - Just past the Anahola bridge, just up the hill, turn right onto Kealia Road. This is a BUMPY road, so be forewarned. Just take yor time and drive through the pastures and windy road. At some point, you'll reach a tended area, with a marvelous vista. This is at a crossroads - and you'll see the "Spalding Monument." The old man Spalding was responsible for a lot of advancements in farming and ranching on Kauai. He is from one of the many "Missionary" families to settle in Hawaii. The monument says it all. The SPALDING STROLL is down the dirt drive fringed by tall Norfolk pines that lead away from the palm-encircled monument. You get some blue-water looks of the Kapaa coast and close-up views of a moist woodland valley. This hike will delight bird watchers. In about a mile, where a road veers to the right, the path you're on starts to drop steeply. The road continues down to a valley inland from Kealia, but you'll probably want to turn around. Anyway, this was just a nice way to drive and take in the vista of the East side mauka toward the [mountain]

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Kapaa Town

Continue on the road back down toward Kealia Beach. At the 10 mile marker is Kealia Beach. We have lifeguards stationed here every day so you can feel pretty safe - of course, if the water is bad - rough, stay out. This beach can be very challenging even for the best watermen. If you feel like stretching your legs, there is a great walking path along the coastline that stretches from Lihue all the way to Anahola. Feel free to take a stroll anywhere along the way.

Kapa'a town provides the traveller with shopping, restaurants and a nice little Farmer's Market and daily shopping festival at the north end of town. Stop by and check out the local wares.

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Sacred Wailua, Heiau, Beaches, Lydgate Beach Park

Drive through Kapa'a town till you reach Wailua at around the five mile marker. Wailua Beach is on your right. Turn right toward the mountains on to Opaekaa Road [hwy 580] We are going to visit some heiau (temples), sacred places. The whole of Wailua is sacred to our Hawaiian people. Please, when near or in a heiau, do not touch anything or climb over the rock walls. These are sacred and historic sites. Imagine someone going into your church and messing with the arrangements. Wailua is a very special area on Kauai. It was, in the old days (na wa kahiko), a gathering place for the most sacred of ceremonies.

Pohaku Ho'ohanau - The Birthing stone - Birthplace of Ali'i. Within a half mile from the turn-off at Kuamo'o, you will arrive at Pohaku Ho'ohanau. Here is where many of Our Kauai Ali'i, my ancestors, were born. When I was a child, there still existed a grass hut there in the park under taht tree.

Drive up the hill and you will arrive at Poliahu Heiau and Opaeka'a falls. The large heiau is situated on a bluff overlooking the Wailua River. Believed to have been a luakini (sacrificial area) heiau, this site consists of boulder walls and stone paved floors. Just makai (ocean side) of the heiau is the "bellstone." The ali'i would signal major events in Wailua by drumming on these stones - and the sound (like a bell) would echo down the valley announcing the event.

The waterfall you see across the road is Opaeka'a, meaning "rolling" or "tumbling shrimp" because of the flowing water and prolific shrimp population in that stream. From here you get a glorious view of the Wailua River Valley. No wonder the Hawaiians believed it sacred and special.

Drive back down the hill to the stop light, turn right toward Lihue, and cross the Wailua bridge.

On the right is Kalaeokamanu Heiau. This heiau is believed to be one of the oldest on Kauai and the site where several religious traditions were introduced. There are differing thoughts as to the translation of the name of this signig=ficant heiau, and most are correct; One being, "The wisdomn of the Children," and another being "the promontory where the birds gather" - ie- "a place of quietude".

Lygate Beach Park: Turn left on Leho Drive. You will arrive at Lydgate Beach Park. Some years back - in the 60's, a local resident got some money together, and the cooperation of the powers that be and created the swimming ponds you see here. At the end of the parking lot is the heiau "Hikina a ka la".

Hikina a ka La - [The Emerging of the Sun]: Hikinaakala is translated as "rising of the sun" or "sun in the east". It was at this heiau, built around A.D. 1300, that the dawn was celebrated with prayers and chants. Adjacent to the heiau was "Hauola", a "pu'uhonua" or place of refuge (City of Refuge) where one could escape punishment and find safety during war or many other infractions.

Wailua Petroglyphs: Right there at the rivermouth, sometimes the river and ocean currents remove the blanket of sand that covers the boulders along the riverbank of Wailua. On several of these boulders are petroglyphs, including human forms, fish, and geometric forms. You might also see the grinding surfaces on these boulders where stone adzes were sharpened and polished.

Take a ride up the Wailua river (Wailua means - two waters - up stream, two separate rivers join to for one) with Smith's Boat Tours. On the south side of the river, you can find the concession for Smith's Boats, who will take you upriver to experience the Fern Grotto and other scenic and historic sites. Hawaiian entertainment, legends and stories all the way up the two mile ride.

When you hit the town of Hanama'ulu just before the airport, turn in and drive through. Go down the hill into Kapaia valley and turn right up Maalo Road (Hwy 583. Drive about 4 miles to the Wailua Falls view point. Wailuia Falls is on th eWest Bend of the Wailua river and measures about 85 feet tall. Do Not take the trail down to the base. Although it is possible, it is very dangerous.

Drive through Lihue. If you turn left, you'll get to Nawiliwili and Kalapaki Bay. A great beach and park with public rest rooms and outdoor showers are there at Kalapaki

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Wailua Falls

When you hit the town of Hanama'ulu just before the airport, turn in and drive through. Go down the hill into Kapaia valley and turn right up Maalo Road (Hwy 583. Drive about 4 miles to the Wailua Falls view point. Wailuia Falls is on the West Bend of the Wailua river and measures about 85 feet tall. Do Not take the trail down to the base. Although it is possible, it is very dangerous.

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East Side of Kauai - Beaches, Scenery, Waterfalls

Of course, from Lihue, you can:

Go on a Helicopter Tour
Go Deep Sea Fishing
Go for an ATV or 4WD Ride
Even Go To A Luau

Next time we see you, we'll go to the South Side of Kauai.

2010-08-16 15:03:11