Kauai Recap: Days 4 & 5

Previous Kauai Recaps: 

Day 4: Boxing Day (Monday, December 26th)

These two days were definitely the busiest days of our trip as we completed two huge hikes back-to-back. But let’s start with Boxing Day. On Christmas we decided that we were going to get up early the next day and head to the Waimea Canyon. I knew that I really wanted to go for two hikes in the canyon and it is one of the top things to do on TripAdvisor for Kauai. So we got up in the morning, had breakfast at our Air BnB and we were on the road around 8am to head to the canyon.

It actually took over an hour to drive to the canyon! As we started winding up the road we stopped at a lookout to check it out. It really was incredible.

45 waimea canyon

We finally made it to the top of the hill and stopped in at the Koke’e Lodge where we bought a trail map and got directions to the Awa’awapuhi TrailClick here to read the post where I blogged in detail about this hike and shared LOTS of pictures, I will only share a couple here 🙂

47 awa hike

It was a beautiful hike through mostly thick forest. Very very muddy and slippery! But the real amazing part of this hike is the view at the end.

50 awa hike

51 awa hike

3,000 feet above sea level. Pretty darn incredible.


The really tough part about this hike is that you’re actually hiking downhill the whole way out to the viewpoint, so the way back is mostly uphill, which was super tough. We were both breathing hard and sweating a lot. The entire round trip hike was about 6.5 miles or just over 10km and took us about 3.5 miles total including 30 minutes or so at the view point.

After we were done the hike we headed back down the road and we were going to do another hike but we both ended up feeling pretty tired and hungry and not really in the mood for another hike. However, we did stop at one more beautiful view point of the canyon and did a bit of an off-road hike which was both amazing and slightly terrifying 🙂


60 waimea canyon

64 waimea canyon

See more pictures and read more about this hike in the bottom half of this post about our day at Waimea Canyon!

Once we were done in the canyon we started heading back east to our next destination; Kauai Coffee Plantation!

68 kauai coffee

It was pretty cool. I wish it had worked out for us to take an official tour of the plantation but tours were at 2pm and 4pm and we got there at 3pm! So didn’t want to wait around for a whole hour for the next tour. We ended up walking around a bit by ourselves and then getting four bags of coffee to take home – some for us and some for our family.

73 kauai coffee

I think the Kauai Coffee Plantation is worth a visit if you are a fan of coffee and in Kauai!

We also were hoping to go to Kauai Beer Company for dinner and drinks on our way back but it turns out they were closed on Monday nights, so we headed back to Kapa’a and got takeout from The Shrimp Station instead. We LOVED the Shrimp Station and ate there three more times before going home 🙂

Here is a dark photo of us eating our Shrimp Station takeout on the floor in the bedroom of our Air BnB because that is where the TV is but we were wayyy too dirty from our hike to eat in bed!

75 dinner on floor after big hike day

I honestly don’t remember what else we did that night… probably not much since we were pretty tired after our huge hike and busy day! Also because of the time difference we were going to bed around 8:30 – 9pm each night and up around 6:30-7 each morning.

Day 5: Tuesday, December 27

So I distinctly remember waking up on the morning of the 27th and being quite sore from the hike and laying in bed and saying to Eric ‘should we relax today or should we do the other big hike we want to do’ and Eric saying ‘we might as well do the hike’ and I said ‘well we have to get going then’. So up and out of bed we were and we got changed and were out the door asap. This was the one morning we ate breakfast out as we stopped for bagels and coffee at the Small Town Coffee Bus on Kapa’a as we headed north. The plan for today was to hike the Kalalau Trail at the north end of Kauai.


The Kalalau Trail is the #1 thing to do in Kauai according to TripAdvisor and I am soooo glad we got there early. We arrived at the trailhead at around 8am and the parking lot was already getting pretty busy. We got one of the last few parking spots left. Also, the hike was long and tough so I’m very glad we got an early start. On our way back around 1pm in the afternoon there were people who were just embarking on the hike and planning to do the same 5ish hour trek we had just done, I would not have wanted to be in their shoes in the heat of the afternoon!


This hike was GORGEOUS. Photos literally do not do it justice. I’d love to go back one day and hike the entire thing and camp on the beach.


It was also muddy and mucky and crazy technical!!


After making it to Hanakapiai Beach, we rested for about 30 minutes and decided to go ahead and keep hiking into the jungle to Hanakapiai Falls. Suffice to say, this hike was INTENSE and included clambering over boulders and multiple stream crossings, but the falls were gorgeous and worth every step.

For many more details and pictures on this hike click here to read my full post!


Once we got back to Ke’e Beach I immediately cracked a cold beer and then immediately went for a swim in the ocean, which felt AH-MA-ZING!


After that we decided to head back to our place as we were very dirty and very sweaty and desperately needed showers. We drove back to our Air BnB and had the most amazing showers ever and then just relaxed and read for about an hour.

After we were rested up and cleaned up we hit the road again to visit Kauai Beer Company. We had missed it the day before because it was closed on Mondays and we always try to visit breweries when we travel. Eric collects growlers!


We got a bunch of tasters (those are 4 oz each!) and a bit of food. It was perfect after our long hike. The beer was soooo yummy after that hike as well.

You can read more about our experience at Kauai Beer Company here! When we got back to Kapa’a, Eric got Shrimp Station again. Seriously it’s so good!

Then we basically went to bed early because we had hiked around 25 km / 15 miles in two days and we were BEAT. The last two days were definitely going to be for mostly relaxing!

4 Responses

  1. Wow that is beautiful! 3000 ft above sea level and you can still see the sea, that is amazing. Looks like so much fun.

  2. Lisa of Lisa's Yarns says:

    Those hikes looked so beautiful. You definitely earned some relaxing days after 2 days of challenging hikes! These photos make me want to go to Kauai so badly as it looks so beautiful! My friend I went to Spain with is doing that big hike in May. I will have to send her your blog so she can preview what she will see!!

  3. Your posts are making me want to go to Hawaii so bad! Absolutely gorgeous!

  4. terryl says:

    These photos make me want to go to Kauai so badly as it looks so beautiful! Wow that is beautiful! 3000 ft above sea level and you can still see the sea

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