Vacations can be like parties—lots of fun and abandonment that can take a toll on the body and require time to recover from. Then again, a vacation in Hawaii, though all about pleasure, can be a recovery of your senses, leaving you with a feeling of rejuvenation.
Spas and hot tubs are part of any feel-good enterprise, and many hotels can set you up. Or, visit the Puna coast on the Big Island (not far from Hilo) and you can spend the day at Ahalanui Warm Springs Park (a county freebie) luxuriating in warm water. The Big Island has several natural hot springs.
Essential to self-improvement is intentional "doing nothing." A lounge chair in the shade with vast blueness to stare at and white-noise waves rolling in is sure to reset the mind—if you stick with it long enough.
Thus relaxed, it's time to focus on the complexities of the natural world. Beachcombing and shell collecting will fill that need. Decorative shells can be found at numerous beaches, including Charo's on the north shore of Kauai.
Since "we are what we eat," try binge-consuming fresh juice and fruits.
But don't forget to add some greens. Sunshine (farmers) markets are common in the islands. You'll find little stands in front of people's houses, neighborhood gatherings where you can stock up, and also island-wide events where you can make a day of it—like the Maui Swap Meet, the Aloha Stadium Market and Chinatown on Oahu, and the Hilo Farmers Market.
Swimming is exercise that relaxes, sort of an active massage. Mix some water play into the daily regimen and feel your joints and muscles ease. Swimming pools will do the trick, but immersion in warm Hawaiian saltwater is an upgrade for the senses.
It's not hard to find Edenlike places to hike in Hawaii. The Kalalau Trail (above) on Kauai is one of the most popular, but every island has numerous places to escape into greenery and get your heart pumping.
Trailblazer guides are brimming with places to hike and snorkel, as well as farmers markets, gardens, retreats, and quiet cultural sites. When you visit Hawaii for a week or two, you can take the experience home, not just as snapshots, but actually infused into your body.
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