Poipu Athletic Club
We had two days left of our vacation. After all the hustle and bustle and wandering here and there the past week, it was time to take a break. With a pool, a gym, pickleball and tennis courts, and the Cabana Bar & Grill onsite, the Poipu Athletic Club seemed like the perfect place to relax.
The beach chairs next to the shallow lagoon suited us fine, and the shade sails kept the sun at bay. I settled in with a Mai Tai and watched as most of our group slid down the slide and splashed in the pool. I wished I could have joined them. Instead, I walked in the water on the steps to cool off. My dip didn’t last long. A group of roughhousing teen boys came too close for comfort, so I got out. No sense risking them bumping into my still healing broken wrist.
The club was a great place to ‘people watch,’ especially when the little camp kids came to play in the water. The young ones learning to swim were especially cute.
We wished we had taken advantage of this amenity, included with the rental house, earlier during our stay. But then we would have missed out on the other cool things we did.
Kayak, Hike, Boat Ride
On our last full day in Kauai, Outfitters Kauai guided our group in tandem kayaks up the Hulē‘ia River. This trip took us through a National Wildlife Refuge where mangroves and other vegetation lined the shores. After the two-mile trip, we disembarked for a hike through a lush jungle and fern-covered valley. Think jungle images from Raiders of the Lost Ark and Jurassic Park. Both movies were filmed in the area.
Secluded pools and waterfalls, complete with a rope swing, were our reward after the kayak/hike workout. And while we rested, and the bravest took advantage of the rope swing, our guide selected juicy mangoes for us to eat and pointed out verbena flowers that tasted like mushrooms.
Back on the trail, we continued our hike to the pickup area where a double-hull, motorized canoe waited to take us back to our cars.
A quick stop back at the house and we were off again. Our destination? Kalapaki Joe’s in Poipu for an early dinner. Jon and I had spent many happy hours at Joe’s during our last visit to Poipu and we wanted to see if the Mai Tais were still delicious.
Alas, it was not to be. A crowd had already lined up outside the sports bar where the TVs inside blasted the last game of the NBA playoffs. While we prepared ourselves for another one-hour or more wait for a table, Bailey called other restaurants nearby. Lucky us, RumFire called back to say they had a perfect table for a party of eight.
Although much fancier than Kalapaki Joe’s, it was the perfect restaurant to celebrate our last night on the island along with our wedding anniversary of 47-1/2 years. (Yes, I know that’s an odd anniversary to celebrate, but there is a reason. We originally scheduled to celebrate our December 28th, 45th wedding anniversary at the end of March and the first part of April 2020, but Mr. Pandemic had other plans for us.)
No matter what birthday, anniversary, or other celebration guests are honoring at RumFire, they can expect excellent service, great food and drinks, and live music in the background. The fantastic view of the ocean and beach, should Lady Luck seat them near the windows, will make their visit all the more special.
The day of kayaking, hiking, and boating, along with the upscale dinner at RumFire, is one I’ll cherish in the years to come. As the sun set on another fine day in Kauai, I pushed back bittersweet tears, not wanting to think about the family parting ways and boarding planes for our respective homes. Our Kauai adventure was one I will relive over and over. And this, our last day, turned out the best.
Miscellaneous and Wrap Up
With this post, we bring to a close our 2022 trip to Hawaii on the island of Kauai. But before we leave, a few more photos and honorable mentions to share.
Grand Hyatt Hotel Spa
The women in our group recommend the Anara Spa at the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa. Two of us had manicures and two of us had pedicures. Be sure to ask about day-use access to the spa facility when making reservations. We didn’t know until we arrived and missed out on sipping fruit-infused ice water by the pool and the use of the sauna, hot tub, and outdoor shower.
At The Shops at Kukuiula, restaurants, shops, and other businesses are standing by to serve visitors. Its tropical setting provides plenty of shade and a few benches. Enjoy a farmer’s market on Wednesdays and live music on Fridays while browsing the stores or dining in a restaurant.
Shaved ice was a hit with our group. They had a contest to determine which place had the best treat. And the winner was?
The Fresh Shave.
Since we returned from Hawaii, we’ve stayed close to home. With physical therapy twice a week and doctor appointments once a month, there hasn’t been time to pack up the fifth wheel and head out. It looks like nothing will change much through September. Will October see us on the road? We’re waiting to see how the next round of physical therapy goes before we make any plans.
For now, we’re taking another hiatus and will be back with more adventures when we can.
Note: A big thank you to Bailey Bishop for sharing some of her photos.