Travel Diaries

Hawaii Diaries #8 – Exploring Princeville and Hanalei

Thanksgiving was our first full day in Princeville.

The weather in Princeville seems to change on a dime. Heavy rain started to move in so we spent the first few hours of the day hanging out at our place.

My wife started a puzzle we found in the house. The cabinet also had a bunch of other games and even a few books for days like this one.

It was still raining after breakfast so we decided to drive around the area until it stopped.

We left Princeville and headed towards Hanalei to the west. It’s only a few miles away and we there’s a few lookouts of Hanalei valley on the way. It’s also the first one way bridge we ran into; a common sight in this area.

Hanalei is a cute little town with a backdrop of mountains. You could see little rivulets flow down the mountains due to the recent rain.


We spent some time at Ching Young Village shopping center. There’s a few stores there and a variety of restaurants and food truck.

It was thanksgiving so a few places were definitely closed. We had a decent lunch at Three Brothers, a sandwich/meat place in the area.

For dessert, we stopped at JoJo’s shave ice to give another place a try.

This one wasn’t that great. The ice wasn’t that finely shaved and the flavors tasted very fake. It was supposed to be guava, lilikoi and mango but you could have fooled me with either of them. It just tasted like sugar ice to me; a far cry from Waikomo down south.

We then headed to Hanalei Beach. This area is very beautiful as even the view behind you in the parking lot is awesome.

It’s sad but this area was hit heavily by the rain in April. The parking lot is in rough shape and the road beyond this beach is closed to non-local traffic.

The beach itself is still in good shape. There’s a good amount of wood on the beach but the shore is clean and makes for a great walking beach with cool views of the bay.

We spent a bit of time walking up and down the beach. The waves here are rougher than other beaches we’ve been on so we didn’t dip into the water. It seems like a good beach for boogie boarding or surfing as there were many out there doing just that.

You could really see some of the damage to houses in the area that line the beach.

It’s unfortunate that we couldn’t go any further as the area past Hanalei seems really beautiful. Some of the best beaches and hiking spots in the north are now not accessible. It’s likely the roads won’t be open until next spring or even later.

We made our way back to Princeville. There, we stopped at the shopping center and got some ice cream at Lappert’s which has a location here.

We also dropped into to Foodland, the local supermarket to see if we could get anything and check out their impressive collection of Spam. Honestly, I didn’t even realize they had more than one flavor. It seems like they have a ton!

We didn’t get any spam but did pick up some items that were missing from our place.

After we got home, we took a walk down to the Princeville Resort; it’s a short walk from our place which is very convenient.

It’s a nice place but does show some signs of aging. There’s a public access beach that is accessible via a path behind the resort. It seems like it’s leading nowhere for a while but does eventually bring you to a nice beach.

We plan to come back to try snorkeling. We went back up through the resort and found some nice spots with good views. It seems like it’s not hard to walk around even if you’re not a guest. We went out on a balcony that had some seating and a nice view of the beach.

There’s a few restaurants and a spa but the prices at these are pretty ridiculous.

We walked back home and took it easy for the rest of the day.

We had stuffed peppers from Costco for dinner; a new tradition! We also watched Riddick while we ate and continued work on the puzzle. The puzzle is mostly my wife’s work but I did put two pieces in there so it’s totally a team effort now!

Overall, it was a nice chill day in the north.

The plan for today is to go snorkeling at the Princeville resort beach then grab lunch and head back east. We’ve got a luau at Smith’s in Kapaa as well. I plan to eat all of the pork!

Related : Snorkeling and a Kauai Luau

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.