You don’t realize how thankful you are for something until you don’t have it anymore. We were talking the other day and agreed that one of the things we miss most about Texas is driving. Not so much the act of driving, but rather being able to get in the car and drive somewhere. It’s beautiful here, but our travel books informed us that the Big Island has much more to offer than what’s inside our 2-mile walking radius. That being said, it was such a blessing to have a rental car last weekend. Heather and Rich planned out the trip and I came along for the ride.
On Saturday, we jumped in the swagger wagon and headed over to South Kohala. We stopped by Hapuna Beach State Park to run around for a bit, but spent most of our morning at Spencer Beach Park. The tour guide book noted that it was a kid-friendly beach and with 3 kids, we’re all about that. Hudson got some snorkeling gear that he loves to wear (even when he’s not in the water), so he spent most of his time snorkeling, and Katie and Charlee helped build sand castles. From Spencer Beach Park, we made our way over to a town called Hawi (pronounced ha-vee) and found an authentic Mexican restaurant to eat lunch at. You may think I’m lying about the authenticity, but I’m not. It was legit AND it had some amazing guacamole! After lunch, we headed over to Pololu Valley. Initially, our intention was to snap some pictures and soak in the view, but we decided to work off some of our lunch and hike down to the bottom of the valley. Wow! You’re missing out on so much of what Pololu Valley has to offer if you don’t venture to the bottom. It was soo beautiful! What looks like white caps from the top of the cliff are actually huge waves once you get to the bottom. I definitely recommend coming here if you’re on the Big Island. We ended our day at the Wai Pi’o Valley lookout. We tried to catch the sunset, but it was a little too cloudy.
Our first stop on Sunday was a place known as “The End of the World.” Where it gets it’s name, I’m still unsure of. I do know that it’s known for it’s cliff jumping and it’s about a 15-minute drive from campus. We were thinking that other people would be there when we arrived so that we wouldn’t have to guess where to jump from, but all we saw were two buckets of flowers. I initially thought they were memorials for people who have died there, and they may have been, who knows. We saw some kayaks coming toward the cliff and realized it was a tour guide with his group. He told us where to jump from, how deep the water was, and assured us that it was safe. He didn’t tell us how high it was, but Rich estimated it was only about 30 feet. The tour guide’s final words were, “But don’t slip. The worst thing you can do is slip.” Noted. Rich went first.
Our next stop was Captain Cook’s. We heard this was a beautiful place to snorkel and a great place to spot dolphins when you get there by kayak. Heather, Charlee and I took one kayak out and Rich, Katie and Hudson took another. They did as they were instructed and stayed inland, therefore, they saw three pods of dolphins. We, on the other hand, were not great listeners and stayed further out and only saw one dolphin jumping through the air. We set our expectations low before we ventured across to the island, so we were excited to even get to see one. From Captain Cook’s we drove over to South Point. Key West claims to have the southernmost point in the continental U.S., but Hawaii actually has the southernmost point at, you guessed it, South Point. It’s so windy there that the trees just start growing sideways. It was crazy looking.
Needless to say, we had a fun, adventure packed weekend and we loved each stop!