My husband and I had another great week with my girlfriend and her daughter from the mainland. Their visit is always so wonderful. We enjoyed great times. We went on a 6-7 mile hike, made dinner on the beach, swam/snorkeled, and had drinks at sunset along with many meals together. We did have one day that we decided to do an adventure that we paid for.
Back in the day, before kids, my girlfriend and I, along with our husbands, would ride three wheelers in the dessert. Three wheelers are now called ATVs (all-terrain vehicles) and they have 4 wheels, making them much more stable. We decided that our paid for adventure on this trip was going to be riding ATVs with Ride the Rim. They take you on a three hour trail ride to the rim of the Waipi’o Valley, Valley of the Kings. Since the tour is on private property this is the only way you can see the valley from this location. This wasn’t the same as riding the sand dunes of the desert but it was a good way to get an ATV fix.
We had several days of rainy weather so we waited until the end of the week to go on the tour. Our timing was perfect. The weather cooperated and we had a blast. Because of the previous rainy days, there were tons of puddles to ride through. We had so much fun standing up on the pegs and trying to see how big of a splash we could make.
Our journey started out with a 2 hour drive to Honoka’a, the North part of the island. Once we were there, we signed some consent forms and they packed us up in 15 passenger vans to head for the property. It was a short 5 minute drive.
The picture to the left is my husband Ken and I with our friend’s photo bombing us in the back ground. We are in the van and on our way to the ATV ranch.
Once we arrived at the ATV yard they gave us brief instructions, handed out helmets and assigned us to our ATVs. Each person took a small loop around the yard to show that they could operate their ATV without any problems. Mostly, they wanted to be sure you knew how to stop. This took all of 15 minutes to get everybody up and running and on our way. If you have no experience riding ATVs and you still want to go on a ride they have 2 passenger ATVs that they will take you on.
Our first stop was a breathtaking view of the Waipi’o Valley. As we stood at the southeast end of the valley looking down at the ocean and the place where people still farm the taro plants we were awestruck. It was so incredibly beautiful.
While we were at this stop the tour guides gave us a little history lesson about the valley, it’s past as well as what is going on today. There is no electricity for the people that live down in this remote valley. Believe it or not there is a waiting list to be able to live down there. What a different way of life it must be for them.
From here we headed up the hill farther. We were able to ride for another 30 minutes before they had us get off the bikes again. This stop was for a swim in a secluded waterfall fed pool.. If you dared to go into the icy waters, they let you swim. They fed us some drinks and snacks to keep us going To the left was the view from the picnic tables where we sat and rested. That’s Ken and Emily swimming in the freezing cold water on the right.
Once everyone was all dried off and snacked up we were back to the bikes. We were on to the next rim. We headed to the top of the valley. The panoramic views from up here were definitely something to behold.
About 15 minutes at this stop, just enough time to get another little history lesson and get all the photos we wanted. From here we headed down the hill. It took over an hour to get up but the downhill part of the ride was a little over 30 minutes and we were back at the yard.
Between riding ATVs again, splashing in the puddles and the long ride for the day, we were all tired and hungry. We asked the tour guides where a good place to eat was and they recommended a little place that was new to the area called Waipi’o’s Cookhouse. We headed over there for a great late lunch. Guess what we found on the menu? Of course, Lilikoi Bars. Our day was complete!
If you are coming to the Big Island and are looking for something fun to do, I would definitely recommend this tour. It was a blast!!!
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