Hawaii: A Pacific Island Kind of Love part: 1

How amazing that we can hop, skip, and jump across the Pacific Ocean from America’s mainland to the Hawaiian Islands in a day? After Terri picked us up at the Lihue Airport, we caught up with dear friends and (at the time) soon-to-be-newlyweds, Anna and Luan, over fresh veggie and rice bowls, fish tacos, and a flight of beer. Our Airbnb had a spacious porch (called a Lenai) overlooking the ocean, surrounded by lush palm trees - a peaceful yoga space, perfect nook for a breakfast spread, and ultimate lure for lounging. We swung by Hanalei Beach just in time to wash our travel day off in the saltwater and practice handstands in the sand during sunset. A sushi dinner near the Hanalei River at The Dolphin brought our first, dreamy day on Kauai to a brilliant close.

Shortly after the sun rose, we took our flippers and coolers to Anini Beach, and came face-to-face with neon fish amongst a lively coral reef. Kendall and I meandered along the lustrous shoreline as far down the beach as possible. We spent the remainder of the beautiful afternoon reading and napping until an Ahi Steak dinner on the Lenai called our names.

Leaning into the Hawaiian moisture of the morning, I took a run under Eucalyptus trees with peeks of the ocean on the way. After returning, Kendall and I hiked down a steep stair set to a beach called Hideaways, and snorkeled until the strong swells pushed us back to the soft, warm sand.

On our next venture, Anna took us to Common Ground, acres of land at the rolling foothills of the Namahana Mountains, and led us to Stone Dam, a pure paradise of a garden getaway with waterfalls abounding. Kendall and I couldn’t help continuing the stunning hike, admiring multicolored fruits and flowers in trees along the way, and enjoying a picnic at the end of the path. With each passing day, our curiosity of the island’s wonders and craving for more exploration grew.