After spending yesterday on the South Shore, it only made sense to check out the North Shore next. We commenced with a drive through the middle of the island, where our first outing was at the Dole Plantation. There were several things to do there, such as a train ride or a maze, but we elected to check out the pretty and colorful garden and enjoy a great (and sweet) pineapple smoothie treat as we shopped around in the bigger-than-normal gift shop.
We then drove west across the island to Hale’iwa. As we drove through this quaint little town, we stopped by another cool gift shop for some more souvenir shopping and then checked out its pretty beaches. As we continued our trek up the north coast, we noticed a bunch of people hanging out on the beach. So we pulled over next to the row of cars to see what the commotion was about. And right in front of us, sunbathing on the beach, was a Hawaiian green sea turtle. Commonly known as Turtle Beach, where these giant creatures love to hang out, a couple volunteers had a roped-off section so you couldn’t get too close or touch the turtle, as it is generally against the law to disturb them (at least it is in south Florida). This particular ‘celebrity’ was named Brutus, and though he didn’t do any tricks or hardly even move, it was still exciting to see one so up close in the broad daylight:
After bidding adieu to Brutus, we were hoping to spend some time at popular Waimea Bay, but the parking lot was full and we could’ve been there for an hour just waiting for a spot to open. So we had to pass on there, but a short jaunt up the road led us to Waimea Valley Audubon Center. Boasting one of a few waterfals that you can actually swim under on the island, we were ready to get wet. But the heavy rains over the past few days muddied up the pond that the waterfall filters into and there was no swimming allowed today. We still enjoyed the easy-going 3/4 mile hike up towards it and took in the many beautiful gardens along the path. As we hung out at the waterfall area, C-Lo befriended the bored lifeguard, who was busy making grass baskets. Hey, what else are you gonna do when there’s no one to ‘guard’.
Food was next on the agenda, so we had lunch at Ted’s Bakery, a local favorite just past Sunset Beach. We thoroughly enjoyed the tasty but messy garlic shrimp and their famous cream pies. C-Lo had the chocolate one while I enjoyed the Bavarian peach pie.
We then continued our northward adventure at the exquisite (and expensive) Turtle Bay Resort. We got our parking validated so it didn’t cost us anything to check it out, but we could tell just by walking around it, you needed some serious dough to stay here. The landscaping and ocean views were incredible, with many a surfer enjoying the pounding waves, and the resort itself was a marvel to look at, in particular the pool area. As we imagined how cool it’d be to stay here, we started heading back down south.
Since the sunset was coming upon us soon, we thought what better place to watch it than at Sunset Beach. But after spending a few minutes there, we decided to continue a little further south to Shark’s Cove for our sunset view. Although sharks are known to swim around here, they are not aggressive and this reef has become one of the best spots on the island for snorkeling and diving. While C-Lo laid out on the beach, I investigated the area some more, taking in all the natural beauty this place had to offer. Even though the clouds covered up much of the sunset, we’re still glad we made our last stop on the North Shore here.