Pua Mau Place Botanical Garden, Kohala Coast
Yesterday I was seriously hurting for ambition. I spent a lot of time online and read several great blogs (including Greening Sam and Avery by my friend Abbie). This inspired me to take the boys on an adventure today. We packed a picnic lunch and heading to Pua Mau Place on the beautiful Kohala Coast.
I told Ikaika that we were going "hiking". We got there at 930 (hours of operation: 9am-4pm) because it gets scorching hot over there so it's best to head out early. The garden is about a mile or two, uphill and down, there is a visitor center, art gallery and admission is $13 for adults. Children 6 and under are free. There are plenty of things kids would find interesting, including these large bells and mallets.
This side of the island is very barren and desert-like. The woman at the gallery told me that they use brackish water (a variation of ocean water) to keep the plants alive. There is a lot of plumeria and bougainvillea. All the plants are clearly labeled and there are benches everywhere The view is spectacular!
Throughout the garden there are large metal sculptures - many of them creepy insects or arachnids. I never wanted to see a 3ft high scorpion but my son thought this might be the coolest place on earth.
The park has live animals, including tortoises and a large aviary with peacocks, chickens and some other bird I couldn't identify (a really fat pheasant? a really small turkey?).
For a quarter, you can feed the peacocks and they will peck that stuff right out of the palm of your hand. Ikaika was not interested in doing that. But he did want to turn the crank to get the feed out. I wish the lady had told us we would need quarters when she gave us the map because we ended up having to hike it back to the entrance to get change :(
The peacocks were hanging out in the trees and they gave Ikaika the full show, hollering, flapping around, etc. No one fanned their tail feathers but when we left the woman at the gallery gave him a tail feather to take home. We left a little before noon and it was already 91 degrees. Now we smell like insect repellent and desperately need a shower.