A Pedacito of Kauai, Hawaii During COVID
Planning a trip to the island of Kauai, especially during Covid, was never something I thought I’d be doing so last minute. I had always thought that going to Hawaii would take a ton of planning and months of anticipation.
However, when my husband was sent there for a work trip in March, there was no way I was passing up the opportunity to check out the “Garden Island."
I’ve heard from friends that the island was the most beautiful of all of the Hawaiian islands, with the lush greenery as far as the eye can see. While I’d seen movies and TV shows filmed on the island, nothing on camera can fully capture the beauty that is Kauai.
My trip took place during the last couple of weeks of the required 3-day quarantine for those with negative Covid tests coming in from the mainland. Because of work schedules, I decided to go to Honolulu first for 5 days then head over to Kauai. This, plus another negative Covid test, allowed me to avoid quarantine since I was coming in from another island.
Waking up that first morning, I was in awe. It was early since my body had not adjusted to the time difference, and I was able to watch the fog roll off the hills and water of Nawiliwili Bay as I sipped on my coffee.
I had no plans other than doing a little bit of work and a lot of walking around exploring. After a few days of hanging out at the beach to watch the surfers and paddleboarders or the pool for a quick dip, I was ready to get out and see more of the island.
My husband, Chuck, got one day off during my 6-day stay on the island. So we tried to take full advantage of that and rented a Jeep for a day of driving around and stopping along the way for sightseeing, grabbing a bite, and a little exploration.
Going to the Wailua and Opaekaa Falls was at the top of my list of things I wanted to do on our drive. So we made our way to both of those points first. It was a cloudy day, but that did not dampen the beauty of these falls.
Taking a few moments to just soak in the sights and sounds made by the rushing water was one of the more calming moments I’ve had during the entire pandemic.
As we drove through Hanapepe, we saw a sign for Main Street and made a quick turn to check it out. Sadly, most of the shops and cafes on the Main Street of downtown Hanapepe were closed due to a lack of visitors.
While driving Main Street, we happened upon the Swinging Bridge sign and knew we had to stop and see what it was all about. The bridge did, in fact, swing. On this windy day, it was swinging a lot. But it was fun, and we met another couple in town from Minnesota who took some photos of us.
Overall, we didn’t get to see everything on the island but we got a great look at what makes this place so special. There is so much green all around the island and even when it rains, it’s still absolutely beautiful. While several places were still closed due to a lack of tourism caused by the pandemic, I do have high hopes that they will return.
The thing I loved best about my time there was meeting the locals and learning why they love this little piece of paradise so much. From the couple sitting near us at a local dive bar to the numerous bartenders who filled us in with stories of living on the island, it was exactly how I wanted to learn about the island. I hope that one day soon, I can return and explore even more of Kauai.
Want to know more? Are you interested in becoming a contributor for Pedacitos? We'd love to hear your stories! Send me a message and I will get back to you!