HAWAII VACATION MARCH 2008 - PART 3 - KAUAI FINISH
It is Thursday morning and we are visiting the "GROVE FAMILY HOMESTEAD MUSEUM". It is the central base of what was once a large sugar plantation. It was founded by George Wilcox, the son of one of the original missionaries.
He and his nieces lived here in the home that they built in 1884. It was turned into a museum in 1978, and it contains a number of buildings in addition to the main house. It was my favorite place on the island.
This was once the plantation headquarters, but it now serves as the museum office.
This is the wonderful docent that guided us through all parts of the museum. She is using some old photos to relate the family history.
The old original safe.
Lots of pussy cats!
I particularly liked the fact that they provided enough docents so that there were only 5 or 6 people in each group.
What a beautiful lawn!
I can't remember what she said here, but I am sure it was fascinating.
This is the house where the bachelor brother, who ran the place, lived.
Marie really loved the way that they stored their fantastic collection of National Geographics. We were assured that this was the way that most of the office records were stored, and that it worked very well.
I also loved these woven mat floor coverings.
Simple life style.
It all felt very homey and welcoming.
A later modernization?
We removed our shoes when we went into the houses. There are many porches, all so inviting.
beautiful tropical landscaping.
The homestead sits up on a bit of a plateau, several miles from the ocean. Here is a woods on the slope behind the house.
Looking out toward the ocean.
and more beauties.
Now we are inside the main house.
Ah, but it would be nice to sit there for a while.
This is the main room of the house. Notice how several rooms are strung out in a line. If you look carefully you may be able to see that the archways between each room are really smaller the farther away that they are. This is an architectural trick to make everything look farther away and larger than it really is.
The story goes that one of the family's female relatives came to visit for a pretty long stay, and to fill her time here in paradise, she make the beautiful embroidered fabric on the sofa. It was very beautiful.
Most of the items in the house are the originals, including these that I saw on a table.
The owner built docks and had his own ship to ship the raw sugar to the refinery in California. I believe that it was marketed as part of the C&H brand, representing California and Hawaii.
What a lovely place to spend a long relaxing vacation.
I liked the fact that we were not rushed, but had a reasonable amount to time to look around.
Lots of fascinating things to see.
The final room that we visited in the house was a kitchen, and there on the table was a plate of wonderful home made cookies that had been prepared just for us! Also, there was a pitcher of really special ice tea to go with the cookies. We were able to copies of the recipes for both the cookies and the ice tea!
Here we gather under this fantastic tree!!
Now isn't he beautiful??
Here they have some chickens behind the wire fence.
We were told that there was a very large population of wild boar on the island. Hunting these boar is a very popular tourist activity, and sometimes there are some of the baby boar that are captured. Many are brought here and, after removing their tusks, they are raised here.
Well, they need their rest after all that food!
A grove of Banana trees
Some housing was provided for some of the workers on the plantation. This is an example of one used by a family from Asia.
Simple and functional.
That TV takes me back -way back!
Re shoeing the old work horses!
I was puzzled about the use of this very narrow path. I was informed that it was for wheelbarrows, so they would not wear a trench in the lawn. I guess one is never too old to learn!
Next we went to a history museum. After I took this photo of a depiction of they type of sea craft that the early Hawaiians used, I was told that there were no photos allowed. I hate that.
As you might expect with all of the rain and rough terrain, there are a lot of waterfalls o the island.
This is the river that we traveled on to go to the Fern Grotto. The early Hawaiians thought this area was something special, and so the leaders and royalty reserved it for themselves. There are a number of historic sites in this area, including some right next to our hotel.
This historic site was a walled enclosure that defined a sacred or holy place.
A gaggle of Geezers on the move. But, really, they were a great group, and we thoroughly enjoyed many hours of pleasant conversation and camaraderie. It is really educational to learn from each other.
Now, here is our Coordinator, Linda, continuing to do a great job. This unlikely accumulation of rocks is really a very holy place for it includes the "Birthing Stone". The Traditions was that , in order to be a King or high leader, the person should have been borne on that rock. Wow.
It is here somewhere, but I lost it. Aw, Foo.
It is Friday morning, and we are off on a field trip to the west side. One of the first things that we visited was the amazing "West-side Technology Center", a beautiful new facility that was build to try and attract some new industry to the area to supplant the closed sugar plantations.
Next, we visited this beautiful historic church.
Very distinguished and welcoming.
A very pleasant and peaceful old bury patch.
Now back to the bus to head up to part of the central highlands.
After an arduous - for the driver and bus - climb up miles of twisting steep roads, we arrived here at what has been referred to as "The Grand Canyon of the Pacific". Well, maybe not quite.
We walked to this wonderful viewpoint, and now I am amazed and the size and scope of this natural wonder. But remember that 400 inches of rainfall!
we were very happy that it was not raining or stormy.
Looking towards the ocean.
We are very happy that we did not have to walk all the way up here. But it really is very impressive and beautiful, as you can see.
As you might expect, there are helicopters that can be rented for a thrilling ride over this area.
In the way back to the hotel, we stopped at the Kauai Coffee Company, which was very impressive. It was started on an old plantation site some years ago to see if it would be a good replacement for the sugar industry. They are growing many different varieties of coffee trees, and, as we walked through the fields of coffee trees, they looked lush and prosperous.
I am told that the samples of the different varieties of coffee were very good.
It is now Saturday morning, and the program has been completed successfully. We had arranged to stay here at the hotel for an extra night so that we could fly to Maui on Sunday Morning. So now were are taking a stroll along the beach by the hotel to give you an idea what it was like. We actually spent some of our free time here swimming earlier in the week.
This is really a public park that stretches for a mile or so along the beach.
Our hotel is inland from the park, but abuts it directly.
The landscaping of the walks and park roads are excellent.
One of the state's federal congressmen had see beaches in Europe that were protected by breakwaters so that the children would be safer when in the water. He came home, and after a lot of effort, had this nice breakwater built for several hundred yards along the beach, and it it a delight for all the small and timid. I fit that category cause this is where I did my snorkeling. The natives refer to is as the "Fish Bowl".
At the Southern end of the park there is a pretty big drop off from the main park area down to the beach. Some group decide that they would like to build something special that the kids would like to climb through and over, and yet provide a good way to get down to the beach. They found a n architect who designed it for free, and then the community started building it with help from the kids. It is called the "Magic Bridge"
Lots of original art by the kids is displayed throughout the structure.
It is almost like a maze.
Those kids have talent.
Picnic areas above the beach.
It also acts as a bridge, permitting vehicles to get to the beach.
walking back North towards the hotel.
Miles and miles of beach!
There is a nice condo that adjoins the beach also.
Now for a few photos back at the hotel. It is beautifully done and well maintained.
A great loafing spot for an old geezer.
another of the public parts of the hotel
I think the bar is back there to the left
This is the secondary pool. The main pool is being refurbished and is closed.
And so we say goodbye to the Aloha Resort.
There was lots of great activities that were part of the Elderhostel program that I have not photographed, but they were lots of fun and informative. These include picnic lunches, a variety of restaurant dinners, historic and educational visits, special stops for special ice cream treats, etc. There were also a number of chunks of "Free Time to use as we liked. The overall experience was great