Luau Night, Surfing, Acai Bowls, & Sunshower Coffee Farm

I’m having one of those days where nothing sounds better than my couch and a warm cup of lemon tea. I have also been drowning myself in Hallmark movies. The good thing about this current mood is that I can focus on catching up on my travel blogs from Hawaii.

During my second week in Hawaii, Caitlin and I spent time playing tennis with the tenniscize group, eating way too many meals at Daylight Mind, attended a luau, took surf lessons, enjoyed smoothie bowls, visited the Sunshower Coffee farm, and ate at the Poke Shack! If you missed our last adventure “night snorkeling with the manta rays“, click here to read! 
After our night swim with the mantas, we were exhausted! The motion sickness was still present, but I refused to miss out on morning tennis with the tenniscize group. I don’t think I’ll ever plan a vacation without joining a tennis group. I had so much fun with these people, and the lessons made all the difference in my game. If you are ever in Kona, make sure to contact Donnia at the Holua Tennis Center! You won’t regret it. I’m so excited to go back and play with the group again. I wish there was a group like that in Charlotte to go to every morning!
After spending the early morning playing tennis, we headed down to Daylight Mind to have breakfast. This place has the freshest and most delicious breakfast in Kona and that’s why I go there all the time. This will be the first place I stop at when I visit again.

I had the avocado mash over tomatoes and spinach with two poached eggs and a side of fresh fruit. Caitlin’s meal came with two eggs but she’s not a fan so I helped her out with that issue. The more protein the better!

We decided to spend the rest of the day relaxing. When you’re “go go go” the exhaustion will eventually set in and we hit our wall early. We canceled the plans to go snorkeling and decided to go on a walk with Kona (my friend’s pup) and then watch movies until later in the evening. We signed ourselves up to attend a luau because when in Hawaii…

We asked around to find the best luau to attend in Kona and everyone said that the Royal Kona Resort put on one of the best! Donnia, the wonderful instructor who runs tenniscize said her daughter is one of the performers, so we definitely had to go show some support!

The luau overlooked the Kailua Bay, so the views were breathtaking. 
I treated myself to a glass of merlot while we watched the sun go down. Going to a luau is a must! It gives you the real Hawaiian feel, and the vibes are so fun. It doesn’t get much better than that.

A grandmother, daughter, and granddaughter were sitting next to us, and they were so much fun!  Talking to travelers and the locals are one of my favorite things to do on vacation.

There was SO MUCH food provided for the luau guests.

On their menu, they had…

Green Salad, Tomato & Onion in Herb Vinaigrette, Three Bean Salad, Potato/Macaroni Salad, Lomi Lomi Salmon, Poi, Kalua Pork, Island Fish with Tartar, Sauce & Lemon, Island Chicken, Chicken Luau, Honey & Soy Braised Beef, Hawaii Sweet Potato, White Rice, Fresh Pineapple, Coconut Dinner Rolls, Jello, Coconut Haupia, Coconut Cake, & Pineapple Upside Down Cake. 
This dress was only $24.99! 🙂 I thought I’d share since I had some of you asking about it on Instagram.

The luau was absolutely gorgeous. The live music was phenomenal and the Polynesian Revue with dance was so neat to watch. The night ended with one of the most dangerous dances, the Samoan Fire Knife Dance! If you go to my Instagram highlights, you’ll be able to watch it.

The ceremony ended around 9 pm. We headed over to Don’s Mai Tai bar for a drink, and then called it a night! We were excited for a day of surfing! 
We finally changed things up.

We decided to stop at Lava Java for breakfast. They also have a large and impressive menu!

But first…coffee! I ordered an almond milk latte with an extra shot of espresso.
I ordered two eggs over medium and a large bowl of fruit for my breakfast.

Everything was fresh and delicious! The service was wonderful, and the views were perfect.
We had an hour before heading down to surf lessons, so we walked around the market area in downtown Kona. We came across painted coconuts and I had instant nostalgia. When I was a little girl, my mom and I used to paint coconuts for our friends back on the mainland! I spent one back home to my parents and then one to Kyle. 
If you’re ever in Kona, please please please do yourself a favor and take a surf lesson from Suzi at Kahalua Sea & Surf! You won’t regret it. 
When Caitlin mentioned taking a surf lesson, I said “yes!” And then I thought about all the sharks and scary things out in the water again…But shark attacks are rare, and the likelihood of me getting attacked is one in 3,700,000. I mean I had just swam with 3000-pound animals in the dark ocean at night, so there was no stopping there! I really pushed past my fears and comfort zones on this trip. 
We signed up for a semi-private lesson, which gives you more one on one time with the instructor. All you need is a swimsuit and sunscreen. They provide you with everything else needed.

We left the sunscreen in the car, and since I already had it on my face, I didn’t think I’d need it because I was wearing a swim shirt. DO NOT MAKE this mistake. The sun was hardly out when we were surfing, and my butt was so burnt the next day that I had to squat to pee for a week. My skin was peeling for three weeks after my trip! You’re pretty much laying on your stomach most of the lesson while waiting on the waves, so your backside is completely exposed to the sun. I can’t wait to go back and surf, but definitely going to lather the sunscreen! 
As I mentioned earlier, our instructor was amazing. I loved talking with her and hearing about her life story. She’s truly living the life and pursuing her dreams as a surf teacher on one of the greatest places on earth. I love how passionate she was about surfing and how she genuine she was! She was extremely encouraging, and I have to give her all the credit for our successful rides!

We left her lesson eagerly craving the bigger waves. That’s the contagious confidence she gave us! 
We didn’t bring the camera out there because we didn’t want it to take away from the lesson, and I also didn’t want to lose it. Next time I go, I’ll wear a GoPro! I think surfing looks extremely intimidating, and it is challenging, but we were actually killing it! I was actually surprised at how fast I picked it up. Caitlin and I talked about renting boards down in Charleston because we couldn’t get enough of it!

I think the next time I’m in Hawaii, I’ll definitely rent a board and try to go out several times. Swimming back to the wave only using your arms is such a great workout. No wonder surfers are ripped! 

The entire staff working at Kahalu’u Bay Surf were so friendly, down to earth, and welcoming. I would say this is one of my favorite activities I did during the trip. I can’t wait to go back!
After all of that surfing, we were so hungry! We stopped at Baski Cafe, one of my favorite spots in Kailua Kona!
Last time I was in Hawaii, I ordered their Kilauea bowl and it was so good. I had to try something different this time so I went with the Puna! 
The Puna bowl had acai, spirulina, hemp milk, and topped with granola, bananas, strawberries, blueberries, hemp hearts, and honey! It was deeeeelicious.
Surfing followed by acai bowls, and then a coffee farm? SERIOUSLY. THIS. IS. THE. LIFE.

After we grabbed our acai treats, we headed back to the house to hurry up and throw on dry clothes so we could head up to Sunshower Coffee Farm. I was so excited to be back here and experience the whole thing all over again. If you missed my post from last year, please read here!

“Imagine being a successful lawyer in Chicago, married to a proprietary futures trader (yeah, I had to google that), but then decided just to quit, move to Hawaii, and buy a coffee farm…

Not only is that incredibly scary and daring, but extremely inspiring. Sometimes crazy ideas or dreams can come true if you just do it.

Kate and Doug bought their coffee farm in February 2013 and planted an 8-acre coffee orchard. They’ve been farming for four years. You’d think that they were secretly coffee geniuses and knew everything about growing coffee before buying the farm, but nope! READ MORE”
The coffee tour is a must. We took a little walk around the farm learning about the coffee plants and the process it takes to grow the beans. 
The coffee tasting was just as fun as I remembered! You definitely learn a lot about the testing process and how to identify the scents and flavors you’re experiencing. My favorite was still the Kalikimaka! It’s a nice blend of the medium roast and dark roast. I highly recommend their coffee! You can order a bag online to get the Kona coffee experience in your own home 🙂
Had to say hello to my goat friends again 🙂 
Make sure to sign up for a tasting during your trip! The groups are small, so you’ll have all the opportunities to ask questions, interact with the owners, and Kate and Doug really make you feel right at home. 
And seeing their sweet pups again made my day! 
Suzi, the surf instructor, recommended Da Poke Shack! We stopped there to pick up dinner, and then headed back to the house to relax and reflect on our eventful day!
I headed out for a long walk with Kona and then had my poke bowl with a side of my leftover salad from Island Naturals. 
I was so sad Caitlin was leaving Thursday! Of course, we had breakfast at Daylight Mind one last time before she took off. If you had breakfast here, you’d understand why it’s irresistible.

I started with a delicious soy cappuccino! I usually get almond milk or coconut before soy, but they were out 🙁 

I ordered my usual, the avocado mash over tomatoes and spinach with a side of fresh fruit! I need to make this for breakfast this week, but the poached egg is not my specialty. I guess it’s something to work on! 
We spent the rest of the morning walking around the shops and farmers market in Kona.
I picked up some pineapple, mangos, and lychees to take back to the house with me. I dropped Caitlin off at the airport, and then headed to evening tennis!

I have one more Hawaii travel blog to share with you which features my snorkeling cruise! 🙂 I’m excited to share!

Questions for you!

  1. Have you ever surfed?
  2. Have you ever been to a luau?
  3. Would you like me to start doing Vlogs while I’m traveling?

 

 

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