Posts Tagged ‘tourism’

All New (to me) Hawaiian Wardrobe, and a little something more.

October 15, 2010


October in Kauai


I arrived on the beautiful Garden Island on Wednesday, October 6th.  While still shaking off the jet lag I was off to the garage sales by Saturday.  A very small carry-on is a gift in 3 ways, light to carry, arrives with you to your destination and makes it a necessity to buy new clothes.  As a frugalista I find garage sale shopping for specific items like a sporting challenge.  To win in this event, the first step is the plan of action.  I scour Craigslist and The Garden Island News classified online the day before the event.  I make a list breaking down the sales by town.  Starting with Kekaha and moving onto Lihue.


The ocean view from our new digs in Kalaheo


Live in Kalaheo so I usually only shop the west, south and east.  The north shore excursions are a special occasion that I usually plan with another activity.   I usually end my “garage sailing ” excursion in Lihue, as a conservation measure.  I get my gas at Costco, do my Wal-Mart stop, and pick up some fresh produce at the Kauai Community College Farmers Market all in the same trip.




I list the number and street address under each town category along with the time that the sale opens.  The earliest garage sales usually open here at 7am.  I scour the listing of items in the ads to see which early sales may have the items I need and plan to attack them first.  I also note next to the address if there are specific directions to the location in the ad. Then I peruse the list to see that I know the location of all the sales. If not, I google the addresses and make notes regarding their location.


petal soft


My daughter tells me I can just put them all into the GPS and  the GPS would map us the best route.  I believe for me that would be time prohibitive, as it take me forever to type things into it.  I like to just cut and paste.   Hey, is there an app for that?


contrasts for the senses


This was my first outing of the season so this time I opted not to head too far west, as there were only 2 sales in Kekaha and none in Waimea.   The initial approach was made in Hanapepe.


hot hot hot only one per pot


Hanapepe is a quaint artsy working class town that’ s just a little rough around the edges.  I find it a photographic treasure trove, but poor pickings for garage sales today.


just a taste of Hanapepe


The next stop was Eleele, residential working class community that loves their dogs.  Found the pot of gold in Eleele.


my new friend Kala


Two wonderful garage sales with like new clothing in just the right sizes for me and lots of wonderful maternity wear for my daughter.  I was able to purchase 4 complete island style professional outfits, comfy soft jammie pants, 2 tank tops for golf, a stylish and  cotton comfortable orange and white dress, 3 ball caps, 1 aloha shirt for Chris, a 50 ct of golf tees,  a few maternity frocks for my daughter, Erin, all for under $30.00.


woman's best friend


Next stop home to Kalaheo.   Two sales here and a quick check in home, then on the road again.  Kalaheo is rural to residential, upscale to working class, with houses carved into and perched on the hills to take advantage  of extraordinary views.  Breezy, green and beautiful Kalaheo is my favorite place to stay on all of the island.


slender trees arc in the wind near my Kalaheo home


Today we’ll skip Koloa, Poipu and Lawai, but make a quick stop at a moving sale in Omao.  I made a small purchase at a big sale 3 bars of dove soap, 7 candles, and a tiki salt shaker for $3.50.  I think there is mainly just one road in Omao with just a few offshoots.  This is hilly ranch land with mountain, valley and pacific ocean views.  The livestock seems to like it.


eggplant gleam in the sun


Last stop today for the sales is Puhi, working class and a comfortable commute to the big city of Lihue.  Puhi is also home to Kauai’s only college.  We found many nice baby items here.  Many people in this community are having keiki (pronounced “kay-key”) is the Hawaiian word for “baby” or “child”, literally meaning “the little one”.




Here in Kauai, so many are growing keiki.


tropical mixer


Everyone loves keiki, their mothers and the mothers to be.  There seems to be no better place to grow and give birth to them.  I am so glad my own daughter gets to experience her pregnancy here in this wonderful island place bathed in love and the spirit of aloha.


blue skies in paradise



Moving on Up

December 11, 2009

We're Moving On Up

Before arriving on Kauai I found our first housing arrangement on Craigslist.  It was a simple process.  I posted an ad of what I was looking for, people responded.  I googled their names and their locations.  Made contacts, saw pictures and made a decision.  The day I arrived here my accommodations were ready at Aloha Estates at Kalaheo Plantation.  We rented from James Hargraves, stained glass artist, inn keeper, and ukulele player.  The dwelling is a 1920’s plantation house, architecturally charming, and seemingly well planned to take advantage of the local trade winds.  Our room was pitched to us as a studio but in reality is more of a room with a kitchenette in a closet, with a full bath, plenty of hot water, and no kitchen sink.  Requiring washing dishes in the bathroom and cooking with a rice cooker and hot plate.  We shared a small screen lanai with our neighbors, that had a small glass top table and chairs.

We spent most of our time out and about so the size of our rental was not a great factor for the 2 months we’ve been here.  When I made the rental agreement, I fully expected to stay here for 6 months, but I did make a month to month stipulation with the landlord in case either of us were not completely satisfied with the arrangement.  During our time here we did all of our living in the king sized bed, it was dining room, home theater and recreation area.

Home Sweet Home

Now it’s time to move on.  James was a wonderful host, our neighbors were quiet and friendly.  We were comfortable enough  and the price was great.  We love the location.  I think Kalaheo is the best place to stay on the entire island,  less rain than the north and east, close safe beaches , close golf, and midway between the resorts of the north shore and the canyons of Waimea.   Close to the art in Hanapepe, snorkeling, fancy golf and coastal hiking in Poipu, and the quaint charms of Koloa.  Oh and I forgot to mention tsunami safe.  James has rooms and apartments of many sizes available.  I highly recommend this place for frugal travel.  Please check out this trip advisor link for my review:

The Plantation House at Aloha Estates

If anyone has further questions don’t hesitate to contact me.

More pictures of the yard, fruit and flowers can be found throughout my blog.

Glass Beach

October 29, 2009

Glass Beach isn’t mentioned in most guidebooks, and many tourists probably wouldn’t consider it a prime destination. The beach is in the middle of an industrial area that used to be a dump.  Over the years all the broken glass was transformed into smooth glistening jewels of sea glass by the crashing waves. And this is a black sand beach, so the colorful pieces of sea glass really stand out. You wouldn’t want to swim here, it’s very rough and rocky, with waves pounding the coast, cutting away at what was the landfill. It is also eerily backed up by an old Asian cemetery with timeworn, tipping and crumbling grave stones. I found myself a thick glass treasure and had many photo ops at this unusual destination.

near glass beach

near Glass Beach

a mysteriously stable cairn found at glass beach

mysteriously stable cairn found at Glass Beach

rough surf near glass beach

rough surf near Glass Beach

view from glass beach

view from Glass Beach

our chariot awaits

free parking

waking up in Kalaheo

October 27, 2009

I love waking up each morning in Kalaheo.  I get up before sunrise and quietly creep out of bed while Chris is still sleeping.  I love the early morning, the sounds of cooing doves, the wild Kaua’i roosters crowing in the distance, the babbling of the Koi pond outside our window… time to go on my next adventure… aloha!

kalaheo vista

Kalaheo vista

sunrise in kalaheo2

sunrise in Kalaheo


aloha, day 2

October 25, 2009

Still jet lagged, I awoke at 2 am, tossed around and bothered Chris for a few hours, then got up at 5 to see my own sunrise. The skies were misty and dramatic. I drove out the the closest beach, the Salt Pool in Hanapepe. There,  a large group of feral cats cruised the parking lot to glean a meal and crowing seaside roosters punctuated the soothing sound of the surf. Driving along the edge of the ocean past the very small Allen Airport, the sun was up and my cup of coffee was history, so it was off to garage sales found on Craigslist and by following signs. TIP: Hunting garage sales really allows you to learn the lay of the land. In just one day I can find my way around both Kalaheo and Hanapepe. I bought a smaller, lighter handbag, 2 saimin (noodle) bowls, and 2 cotton spaghetti-strap tops with wooden beads. Total cost: $3.00. The garage sale foray was a success!

Kalaheo home base

Kalaheo home base

Kalaheo texture

Kalaheo texture

Kaua'i rooster

Kaua'i rooster

beauty everywhere

beauty everywhere

our first full day in Kaua’i was wonderful

October 24, 2009

We bought our car for $1250.00 (that we arranged before arrival on Craigslist). It’s an Acura Legend, clean and wonderful, we are so happy! The day was in the 80’s, no rain; the night temp cool, in the 60’s. Went to all kinds of local stores and found that food isn’t too expensive as long as you look around. Chris’s jug wine is $2 cheaper and beer is cheaper than NY too. I ate the best pineapple in my life, a Maui Gold, and we went for a dip in the Queen’s Pond on the dirt road to Polihale. Then we walked the Barking Sands all the way to Polihale, as far west as we could go on the beach from the south. The water was rough due to a tropical storm, but it’s so warm and clear… clear like I’ve never seen before.

Polihale drama

Polihale drama

Chris's first day in Kaua'i
Chris’s first day in Kaua’i
Polihale, the end of the rainbow

Polihale, the end of the rainbow

red dirt and rough rock

red dirt and rough rock

like the pyramids

like the pyramids

surfer dude

surfer dude