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Kayaking in Hawaii

Updated on October 22, 2015
Copyright Elayne Kongaika
Copyright Elayne Kongaika

Recently our family went to a sand bar in Kaneohe Bay about a half hour from our home. It was a beautiful sunny day with trade winds blowing.

The children were so excited as we boarded the double hull boat with an outboard motor.

I had heard about the sand bar, but it was my first time actually going there. When the tide is low, you can see the sand, but when the tide is high, it disappears.

We were lucky enough to see a few turtles swimming by our boat on our way to the sand bar.

The water was so blue and the surroundings in the Kaneohe Bay never cease to amaze me.

When we arrived at the sand bar, there were several other boats already anchored there, and people had set up some tents. One family was actually having a barbecue.

It was amazing to see so much sand knowing it was just out in the middle of the bay. No roads here! No restaurants, bathrooms, or other amenities. Only sand and sea.

Not to worry. My son had rented a kayak and snorkeling gear. We had brought along our own food in an ice chest, and knew it would only be a couple of hours before the tide would come in. So, we set about making use of our limited time.

I went for a walk with the grandchildren on the white sandy beach. We saw many interesting marine life wandering around in the shallow water and sand.

You could see little holes where the crabs were hiding and we found a few shells.

I had heard there were hammerhead sharks in the waters around the sand bar, and that was enough to keep me on the sand instead of in the water.

The sand bar is around three miles long and one mile wide, so even if you can't see the whole thing, it is pretty large. Of course there are no shade trees, so we had to lather on the sunscreen, and wear our sunglasses.

The fun really began when the kayak was put in the water. Each of my grandchildren had their turn and even their mother who does not swim. Since it was my son that was the chaperone taking each person for a ride, he got a great workout.

I had a good walk around the amazing sand bar and mostly relaxed. What a perfect day to be with family.

There are parties held at the sand bar a couple times of year. Some even bring bands out on the boat and have dances.

Kaneohe Bay does not have long white sand stretches and crystal clear water that make so many of the Hawaii beaches like Waikiki so popular. Instead, it possesses a combination of unique factors that make it one of the most studied coral reef systems in the world!

Kaneohe Bay's waters are sheltered by a barrier reef. Swells generated by the islands' predominant trade winds create perfect conditions for the growth and formation of numerous patch reefs and fringe reefs (over forty)throughout the bay.

If you view the bay from a higher vantage point… like the Pali Lookout, or coming out of the windward-bound H-3 tunnels, you will see a spectrum of color caused by the varying depths and bottom formations of different areas within the bay.

You can see hues of ivory, teal, light and dark blue, and even brown depicting the different bottom conditions and water depths of each of the bay's different areas.

You can kayak, snorkel, paddle surf and swim almost year round in Hawaii, especially in Kaneohe Bay. If you are into extreme sports, there is also kite surfing (check out the video).

As for our day at the sand bar, it was an experience I shall not soon forget.


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  • MisaLeonessa profile image

    MisaLeonessa 6 years ago

    Aloha to you too! It would be wonderful to visit again someday.

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 6 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Thanks Misaleonessa for sharing your experience and your positive feedback on my kayaking hub. Hope you can come to Hawaii and experience it in the near future. Aloha!

  • MisaLeonessa profile image

    MisaLeonessa 6 years ago

    I would love to kayak in Hawaii! Warm water and beautiful ocean life...hard to beat it! Thanks for sharing your adventure.

    You might like to read my story about kayaking with Humpback whales today in Santa Cruz, Ca.

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 6 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Can't think of any better place nifty@50. Hope you can come and join us. Glad you enjoyed it.

  • nifty@50 profile image

    nifty@50 6 years ago

    Kayaking in Hawaii, is there a better place to be? Great hub!

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Appreciate that pmccray - I love the mountains here in Oahu.

  • pmccray profile image

    pmccray 7 years ago from Utah

    Wow the scenery is just breathtaking. Excellent hub, voted up and shared. Peace to you elayne001

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Glad you wanna come here Energy Advisor. Hope you can soon. Aloha.

  • EnergyAdvisor profile image

    EnergyAdvisor 7 years ago from The nearest planet to Venus

    Looks like I wanna go there sometime! Nice photo's

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    That is interesting cvanthul. I would love to go to Florida one day. Thanks for commenting.

  • cvanthul profile image

    Cristina Vanthul 7 years ago from Florida

    Sounds like a lovely time, elayne! Amazing that something so large can just "come" and "go", isn't it? Though it simply gets covered by water at high tide. There's a similar place in the Florida Keys, also known as the sand bar. Like your sand bar boaters ride out there to enjoy it every weekend and it gets covered with boats, boaters, swimmers and such, though it isn't nearly as large as your sand bar. Enjoyed your hub, elayne.

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Thanks Lisa Ward. It is beautiful, and hope you can come and see Hawaii for yourself.

    @TroyM - Thank you very much. Hope your better half enjoys it too. Aloha!

  • TroyM profile image

    TroyM 7 years ago

    Beautiful shots! Passing this along to better half, kayak nut :)

    GOod hub.

  • profile image

    Lisa Ward 7 years ago

    It looks beautiful.

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    That would be a bummer Micky Dee. I don't think I would enjoy that either.

  • Micky Dee profile image

    Micky Dee 7 years ago

    I just hate it when a shark eats my kayak!

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    You are right G L Strout about time - it seems to just slip away. Might as well enjoy it when we can.

    @LianaK - We can go together!

  • LianaK profile image

    LianaK 7 years ago

    Wow the parasurfing looks awesome. . . maybe one day. Great hub!

  • G L Strout profile image

    G L Strout 7 years ago from Ohio, USA

    This is one activity I have never tried but would love to. So much to do; so little time.

  • elayne001 profile image

    Elayne 7 years ago from Rocky Mountains

    Glad you enjoyed the pictures Hello, hello. I do enjoy the perks of living here. Too bad I have to work most of the time.

    @drbj - yes, do come to visit Hawaii. You may just like it.

    @belliott - Thanks for looking.

    @Princessa - I appreciate your comments.

    @Simple Tim - It is very tempting to just enjoy the scenery even for me. It is breathtaking. I try to take as many pictures as possible to remember how I felt at the time.

  • Simple Tim profile image

    Simple Tim 7 years ago

    Kayaking in Hawaii..Hmmm I dont think I'd want to do aynthing but enjoy the scenery if I holiday in Hawaii:)But I guess if you live there, then it must be much more than a live in its beauty! Thanks for this personal account of one of the worlds most beautiful places.

  • Princessa profile image

    Wendy Iturrizaga 7 years ago from France

    Beautiful photos, it sounds like you had a fantastic time there. Wish I was there!

  • belliott profile image

    belliott 7 years ago

    Beautiful. Makes me want to go there.

  • drbj profile image

    drbj and sherry 7 years ago from south Florida

    Now that's my kind of sand bar. Amazing. Will have to visit it one day. Mahalo, elayne.

  • Hello, hello, profile image

    Hello, hello, 7 years ago from London, UK

    Such a beautiful country I could envy you. Thank you for sharing.