Haena-Wainiha and Hanalei…

So you have returned home from the tropical island of Kauai only to feel as if a part of you didn’t make the flight back home.  If this is the case, you are among many that have felt the charm, warmth and aloha of both Kauai and its friendly inhabitants. The draw to return may be quite strong and the feeling of being complete only awaits your arrival back in Lihue. Perhaps you’ve already started to dream about your next ultimate tropical getaway or possibly having your very own home on the Garden Island…

If your thoughts involve having a pristine tropical paradise that incorporates both sheer emerald cliffs and cascading waterfalls, having of miles of incomparable beaches to stroll along as you enjoy either a magnificent sunrise or sunset, world class snorkeling and surfing at your back door, all combined with the nostalgic feel of the simpler times of yesteryear, then we have just the right locations below. Each area is different but shares in the aforementioned traits.

A beautiful sunset at the Hanalei Pier. Photo by Adrian Sear R(S)

Your journey back into time starts as you cross the historically significant, one lane bridge heading into Hanalei and leave the bluffs of Princeville behind. Hanalei is one of the most rustic and charming places on the island of Kauai. It is home to many great eateries and shops to peruse, along with just being a great place just to unwind and stroll around. A short walk to the Bay will allow you to take in the incredibly colorful and warm waters and to allow you to look straight back into 4000 foot plus emerald green peaks that are home to numerous majestic waterfalls. The Bay itself is an almost perfect crescent shape and encompasses over a 2 mile stretch of sun-kissed sand. Nature is in full glory here and its splendor is unmistakable. The Bay can take on an aquamarine color that has to be witnessed to be believed. Hanalei is conveniently located within a short one hour drive from Lihue. Once there, you can simply park both the car and yourself and just relax and take in the sheer tranquility of the area. Everything from the grocery store, to the beach, to the fine dining options and local bars, are all within a quick ride on your trusty beach cruiser or a leisurely stroll in your shorts and sandals. Hanalei is a special place and as with many of the communities of the North Shore, the smallness of its size limits the available housing options. Prices here currently start in the $800K’s and go up from there. If paradise and convenience are what you envision, then National Geographic’s number one rated beach town, Hanalei, is an excellent choice.

MLS 260113, listed by Sean Ahearn, R(S) is located in Haena, Kauai.

Haena and Wainiha: These stunning and even smaller communities lay 10-15 minutes beyond Hanalei. The drive out is full of nostalgic one lane bridges and amazing vistas of the stunning tree lined shore. These two communities are the most remote of Kauai’s North Shore and the towering peaks above them definitely assist in creating that “Island-Getaway” feel to perfection. Large reefs and secluded coves make for incredible surfing in the winter months (for experts only) and amazing snorkeling in the summer. This area is a water lover’s paradise. For the adventurous hiker, the spectacular Kalalau Trail and incredible Na Pali Coast is only minutes away. Other attractions are the wet and dry caves that can be seen from the road. These are thought to be at least 4000 years old!  The Limahuli Garden and Preserve is an area that offers both amazing mountain views but also a large assortment of native flora to take in. Its cultural history, as well as most of the river valleys, is very significant. This spot is so scenic, that segments of Jurassic Park were filmed here. Homes in Haena range from a traditional “Surf-Shack” that would currently run around $450K-$550k. Oceanfront luxury homes can go for an excess of over $10M. Hanalei Colony Resort is the one and only condominium development beyond Princeville to the west. Pricing varies greatly on these units, based primarily on their proximity to the ocean. As with all of Kauai, the diversity in real estate options in Haena and Wainiha is the name of the game here. If tropical remoteness and the feeling of being far withdrawn from the modern world is what you have envisioned, then Haena and Wainiha maybe a great fit for you.

All this being said, such amazing tropical lushness does not come about without some precipitation. A lot of it tends to fall in either brief passing showers or night rains.  Make no mistake, though, it is not any wetter here than many of the other areas of the island. When the sun is out, (which is frequent) the beauty is hard to compare. Temperatures can range from a cool 60’s in the winter mornings to 80’s in the summer months. Trade Winds assist in keeping the climate almost idyllic, with their consistent yet mostly gentle breeze.

Next stop on the island tour is Princeville-Aliomanu…

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