Totally Worth the Early Morning Wake Up

Port Allen and our chariot for the day
The first thing you have to know about Hawaii is that the weather is perfect.  All.  The.  Time.  Mexico is blazing hot in the summer and NYC is too cold in the winter.  San Diego is pretty nice, but Hawaii is it's own perfect idealized weather climate.  We've been in October, December and July.  It never changes.  Balmy breezes with just the right amount of humidity and sunshine that makes your skin glow and melts your soul into a puddle of happiness.  We didn't catch a drop of rain this time, but even when it does it usually doesn't last long and it's still warm.  It just doesn't get much better.  As soon as I stepped off the plane I was content and relaxed until the moment I left.  You also have to know that food is expensive.  We all had some serious sticker shock when we made our first trip to the grocery store.  I spent $6.99 on a loaf of bread!  MJ bought some grocery items for all of us at Walmart and it was a shocking $80 bucks.

We went boating on our 2nd full day in Kauai.  I wasn't so sure about Captain Andy's Sailing Napali Snorkel Tour.  I can't swim and I have fish phobia.  I sure as heck am not going to jump off a boat into the middle of the ocean and swim with the fishes, but this is one thing MJ requested so we went with it and I'm glad we did.  I purposefully scheduled this early on in our trip while we were fresh because it was not early in real life, but definitely early for vacation.  7:45am check in.  Ugh.  We had to set our alarms.
My mom and I


There are no shoes allowed on the boat and they make sure of it because the first thing they did before we even got on was take our shoes.  We had to place them in a locked shelving unit and got them back when we returned.  My first thought because I am borderline OCD.  Gross.  I don't want to walk around a public place without shoes, but the boat was very clean and dry.  It got wet and a little grimy after the snorkelers came back, but it was fine.  We were free to move around the boat as we wanted.  There were plenty of places to put our stuff and sit down below and up above.  The thing that made this trip worth the money even if we weren't going to snorkel is the length of time, the views and the food.  We got to be on a boat for 5.5 hours, in an ocean that went from royal blue, to turquoise, to aquamarine depending on the depth of the water and how the sun reflected off of it. Because of the mountains, the only place these views are visible is from a boat in the middle of the ocean. 
We were on a Catamaran so we were too tall to go into the caves but you can do it in a Zodiac which is basically a gigantic blow up raft.  Zodiac's are tiny.  They only hold 14, while Catamaran's hold 49.  That is an option through Captain Andy's but it's very wet, bumpy, you have to hold on for dear life a lot of the time and sea sickness is a very real concern on boats of either size.  For my first boating adventure I preferred the luxury of the larger catamaran where I could leisurely sit around, eat, drink and stay dry.  We also had bathrooms which are not available on Zodiacs.

The untouched mountains of the Napali coast are absolutely stunning.  I could stare at them for hours and when all is said and done that's what we did. We had dolphins swimming directly in front of our boat.  They are so cool to look at and I was impressed that they could stay directly in front of our boat and not get run over.  There was an hour for snorkeling where most of the passengers jumped into the water.   After being in the sun all day a dip in the ocean looked so refreshing.   A part of me really wanted to throw on a life jacket and get in; but those fish are so big and the water is so clear I could see them from the boat.  There was no way I was getting in there.
This cute boy
MJ's mom was jokingly referred to as a "project" since she had never been snorkeling before.  The staff is really patient.  She was coached until she was comfortable enough to get off the stairs and get out there on her own.  They wanted me to be the other project, but I'm pretty sure nobody on that boat had enough patience for me.  I'm no project.  I'm NOT snorkeling, so I politely declined.  My mom was not up for the task either.
MJ is the guy in the middle facing the camera
MJ and his mom
I am still fascinated that people know how to keep their body afloat without a life jacket for that long and make it look so easy and relaxing without drowning.  I am a non swimmer.  I don't get it.  We watched them bob around for a while and then my mom and I noticed they had put out lunch.  It was just sandwiches with cold cuts and cheese, but it was seriously so good.  It was not cheapo lunch meat and it was full of flavor.  Then we had cookies for dessert.  They had about an hour to snorkel and then they broke out the beer and wine which was unlimited for the rest of the trip.  They took roll call to make sure no one had gone missing and then we headed back to port.
You had to climb up and down the ladder to get to the bathroom
I have had no issues with gigantic cruise ships or dinner cruise ships but I've never been on a boat this small so I was nervous about getting sea sick which, would really suck.  There is no going back once they take off.  I read some horror stories on Trip Adviser so I brought Dramamine just in case and we all took a dose before we got on.  I felt a little bit ill after spending a few minutes in the lower part of the boat to use the restroom and put on sunscreen, but it passed.  I think you are definitely better off above.  I definitely recommend Captain Andy's.  They took care of us the entire time.  There was coffee while we were waiting at check in and as soon as we got on the boat we helped ourselves to pineapple, pastries and juice.  When the boat is moving it can be tricky walking around.  The staff was so friendly and they came around asking us if we needed anything, bringing us drinks and cookies and taking our trash.  They even hosed off our feet when we got off the boat, which made my little OCD heart happy.
A big part of being on vacation for me is waking up whenever the heck I want.  I don't want to lose half the day sleeping in, but I also don't want to have to wake up to an alarm clock like I do at home.  I will never NOT do something on vacation just so I can sleep because that would be ridiculous, and this was totally worth the early wake up.  It was such an amazing experience.  I'm feeling brave enough to try a Zodiac if I ever get the chance again.  Maybe I'll even be brave enough to snorkel?  Nah.  Not a chance.  

Biking in Kapaa, Kauai


Anonymous said...

Sounds like fun. I will get into a pool or ocean or freshwater. The older I get the more OCD I have become. Just being on the water would satisfy me.

Lauren said...

Beautiful pics! I'm not a swimmer, either, so I can relate. I say I can swim just enough to save my life and that's it! I'm glad you enjoyed the trip on the boat and there was something for everyone.

Jacqueline Hough said...

I love your photos. It looks like y'all had a fun time.

A Life Less Traveled said...

That looks amazing. I have always wanted to go to Hawaii some day and your pictures are showing me how I need to plan that soon.

Janna Renee said...

OMG! Now I want to go! It's nice to see another side of Hawaii other than just the typical beach shots.

Susannah said...

Wowie! That looks like so much fun!!!! <3

Mrs. Pancakes said...

I can feel the calm and relaxation in these pictures and the sceneries...OMG! I have to experience Hawaii soon! So so beautiful!

Pegster said...

You are absolutely right about the weather in Hawaii, it is something else, perfection right there. How awesome that you went on the trip with your mom, I love taking trips with my mom too.

That 3rd pic of you and MJ with the scenery is absolutely beautiful.

TOI said...

I want to to Hawaii, I dreaming through your photos. Such a perfect place to spend with your loved one! Paradise on earth!

Ashley R said...

Just gorgeous. All of it! <3