Thursday, October 23, 2008

Kauai (part5)

Near Hanapepe, on the western side of Kauai, is Salt Pond Beach Park, named after the traditional Hawaiian sea salt production in pools, located near the beach. For generations, Hawaiian families have evaporated seawater in the pans dug out of the red soil here to produce natural sea salt during the summer months.

You can find the reddish Hawaiian sea salt for sale in some shops. I still have some in my kitchen, bought before I even knew about Salt Pond Beach.

On our way back we stopped at the Kauai Soto Zen Temple Zenshuji, a Buddhist Temple in Hanapepe. When Japanese workers were brought to Hawaii to work in the sugar cane fields, they brought their Buddhist religion and many temples were built throughout the islands.

Although Kauai is only 26 miles across and 21 miles from north to south Kauai owns one of Hawaii's natural wonders, the Waimea Canyon. The canyon measures 10 miles long, 1 mile wide and 3500 feet deep and when Mark Twain visited the canyon he referred to it as the 'Grand Cayon of the Pacific'.
Deep down in the valley runs not the Waimea River, but the Poomau River, which is Kauais longest river.
Following the main road, the Waimea Canyon Drive, we could hike along trails, or just wonder about the majestic views one has from the numerous lookout. One day is certainly not enough to explore of all the canyon's beauty.

The Waipoo Falls can be seen from the road:

The Kalalau lookout is the highest elevation most people reach in Kaua‘i by road, about 4,000 feet high and it's also one of the greatest views you can ever have, Na Pali. The Na Pali coast featured in several movies like the original King Kong movie, Jurassic park and so on. Understandably, it's just so beautiful.

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