Thursday, September 24, 2009

More South Shore

After we left Waimea Canyon, we spent a bit of time exploring the south shore of Kauai. It's a lovely area, and I hope we'll get back that way some time. The horrid traffic on the east side stopped us from making any more daytrips in the south during our remaining time on the island. For people considering the trip, if you are spending more than a week I would recommend trying to spend a few days on each side. I don't think I would change what we did, spending a full week on the north.

Anyways, after we left Waimea, we made a quick stop at Hanapepe for shopping. There is not much town here, but there are several very nice galleries. Expensive though. I was very tempted to buy a Ni'ihau shell lei, they are beautiful, but very pricey.

Our next stop was Kauai Coffee. You drive a long road through coffee orchards on the coast to get to their visitor center. They have a tasting room and gift shop. There wasn't much to see here though, and it didn't seem like they offered any tours (though we didn't look very hard, we were mostly interested in trying the coffee). We bought a bit of their estate grown peaberry, which was excellent.

Having tried a selection of coffees from all 3 islands, we rank them this way:
Maui Coffee Growers Peaberry
Kauai Coffee, Estate Reserve Peaberry
Kona coffees

We tried at least 3 different Kona coffees (brewed at home, not just tasted), and found while they were good, they weren't great. The Maui coffee is outstanding. A lot of the Kauai coffees we tried we thought were just okay, but the one we bought was excellent. But if we decide to mailorder Hawaiian coffee, it would be from Maui.

Next stop, Spouting Horn. This took us through Poipu, which looks like a nice place to stay. Here are a couple of pics of the horn spouting:

After that, it was getting late so we headed for home. Our route took us through a section of the road that was labelled "Tree Tunnel Road" in our guidebook. This cracked us up. It's a stretch of road with large trees, where the canopy covers the road. Todd says "in New England, we call this a 'road' ". But this is something special in Kauai.

It's late enough that the construction workers have all gone home, so we were not stuck in too much traffic this time. We would cook dinner at home that evening after our long days drive.

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