This morning we were able to take it easy. I was still awake at 5am but we didn’t need to leave until 11am. I definitely don’t do well with punctual starts this day so it good having more time.
At 11am we headed off in the car for a 50min drive to Waimea. We will be headed back here again to dosome touristy things so we just drove straight to the selected lunch spot – Coconut Corner.
This was definitely not the type of place I would stop at if I hadn’t known it had vegan food options and had a good rating.
We ordered our lunch and then drove to the small boat harbour where our Na Pali experience boat trip would leave from. Kevin had already devoured his Fried Apple Banana Lumpia while I enjoyed my vegan pineapple fried rice with tofu while sitting in the car. It was really good and I was sad I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the leftovers but I happy I’d be able to feed it to the chickens (later when we returned).
At 12.30pm we headed to the picnic table and got checked in for our tour. They provide everyone with a dry bag in which to store our things. We had to wait until our boat and Captain Nate arrived. I had chosen a tour company that only takes a maximum of 6 passengers on each boat so we were with one other family with 2 girls, 11 & 14. They were wearing Aulani t-shirts so we knew we were in good company. Once onboard we had a quick safety briefing and then set off. It’s about 40min trip to reach the start of the Na Pali coastline. But once there it did not disapoint. Unfortunately some of the photos aren’t the clearest since they were taken through a waterproof phone cover.
Nate told us some stories about the Native Hawaiians who once lived here and about the different movies that were filmed on the beaches. He also took us into some caves which was pretty cool.
There was one that no longer had a ceiling.
One with some sea birds, and Nate even reversed about 20 meters into one very long dark tunnel. No idea how he managed that (but has been doing these tour for 11 years).
I know the photos just don’t do this place justice. It’s just somewhere that has to be seen in real life to be fully appreciated.
Sorry for so many photos but I haven’t even shared half of them with you !! It was just impossible to stop taking them. And we so lucky that the clouds blew away and the blue sky appeared when we were out there. After taking in all this beauty it was time to head to our snorkel spot. Kevin and I got to have the front seats this time (everyone had a turn).
No sooner had we arrived at the reef, and Nate dived overboard to find the sunken mooring (it’s hidden underwater so other boats don’t use it), then a friendly and inquisitive young monk seal appeared to check us out.
Then it was time to snorkel. I was so glad to have the prescription mask from Snorkel Bob’s as the water was so clear and there were plenty of fish to see.
Of course, it was extra exciting to hang out two turtles. It’s always such a special experience.
Back on board we had a drink and some fresh Hawaiian pineapple – which was delicious. Then sadly it was time to start the journey back.
Lucky for us Kevin has really good eyes and spotted something jumping out of the water in the distance. Nate quickly headed in that direction and we soon found ourselves in amongst a whole pod of Spinner dolphins doing lots of spinning. It was quite the sight to see. How lucky were we?
It was then a bit of bouncy/ rough ride home. Kevin and I got quite a bit of spray (which was fine) but I ended up with a pretty sore backside ie sit bones !! Finally around 6pm we made it back to the calm of the harbour. We said our goodbyes and headed back to the car. But before we could leave I had to feed the chickens my lunch leftovers. They seemed very happy with the situation.
It was a 50 min drive back to our apartment. We discussed having dinner out but since we were both so salty and it was getting on we decided to have dinner at home. We got back just as it was getting dark. Kevin was good enough to cook dinner while I was having my shower. I had a Gardein skillet meal and Kevin had some cheese stuffed mushrooms.
It was after 9pm when we finally headed to bed, tired but very happy.