Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Moloa'a—as in "ahhhhhh"

Drive two miles down a stream valley on Kaua'i's east shore and you come to beachside cottages (some with botanical gardens) set around a classic crescent of yellow sand. Take a hike one way to a shearwater (shorebird) sanctuary, with a few big white Laysan albatrosses as neighbors, set on a rugged bluff. Walk the other way around the bay and come to some classic soaking tubs pocketed into coral reef beside palm trees. Or don't go anywhere and plant a towel in the middle of the bay and just count waves.

Moloa'a is usually quiet, owing mainly to quite a few other wild-beach options on this coast. Just stay clear of the place when the big rains come to Kaua'i—many of the cottages are built on 15-foot high posts for a good reason.