Our third day in Oahu was spectacular. We started by driving to the magnificent the Waimea Valley and the Waimea Arboretum and Botanical Garden. We then walked to the nearby Waimea Beach where kids jump off a high rock into the surf. It was a great day of hiking and just lying on the beach.
The Waimea Arboretum and Botanical Garden is a real gem and you should expect to take at least three to four hours to really enjoy the huge area. The brilliant flowers and massive trees are incredible. We took the short historical tour which was well worth it. We learned a great deal about the local fauna and flora and even tasted from roots with tumeric and other spices. The highlight is at the end of a short hike where you can swim into a secluded waterfall. Since it is 30 feet deep with slippery rocks, they have a hut with life jackets that you are expected to wear. At first, I was reluctant to don a lifejacket but it is a much better and safer way to explore the waterfall. It is really quite slippery and the drop off to thirty feet starts close to shore. You can also more safely go under the powerful waterfall, which is fed by the rains. There has been so much rain lately that they are protected from any drought for two years on the island. We loved the swim and the whole experience. Here are a few pictures.
We then walked back and crossed highway, we went to Waimea beach, which is what you think that a beach in Hawaii should be. It is crystal clear water and soft sand. The drop off is impressive. Just a few feet off the beach, it get deep fast. You can lay on the beach and watch kids jump from the large rock or just enjoy the sound of the ocean. These beaches are far less crowded than those in Waikiki though on weekends the locals join tourists at the best beaches. The crowd this Saturday was still quite low with plenty of room on the beach. There are few pictures:
We returned to shower and head out again for some Hawaiian bar-b-que. We are watching the hurricane that seems to be heading toward the Big Island. Right now everything is tranquil in paradise.