My favorite of all favorite trips has got to be my visits to the islands. It's where I went to college. It's where I spent Thanksgivings and Christmases - my "home away from home". I had the best roommates any "haole" girl could ask for! (shout-out to my roommies!!!) And our friendships are still alive and well!
I went back (without the kids) to Hawaii almost ten years later and forgot how much I missed it until I was there. It was October of '03 and the entire time I kept thinking, "Oh, the kids would love this" or "the kids would love that." So, when we got home I started planning our Spring Break trip for 4 mos. later in March of 2004. (These pics will be a culmination of both trips.)
So much to do, so little time, so many islands to choose from... seriously. Here is my opinion, for what it's worth.
Maui - Commercialized and pricey but Romantic Honeymoon type stuff
Oahu - Commercialized, Touristy - Family OR Romantic - has everything
"Big Island" - Mostly Residential, though the Volcanoes rock! (literally)
Kauai - the most B.E.A.U.TI.FUL of all. luscious flowers. beautiful scenery... but it is a smaller island, so not as much to keep the kiddies entertained
Molokai - well, er, um...it is Hawaii, so it is gorgeous, but er... um... 'Twas once a leper colony, so, um.... 'nuff said.
Ok - again those are just my opinions. Since we went for a long weekend and I wanted to take my kids to the "touristy things" we did Oahu. Oahu is known as "The Gathering Place".
We stayed at the Ocean Resort Hotel in Waikiki for a few reasons.
1) we got a good deal (it was "off-peak") 2) it had a kitchenette in the room so we could eat breakfast and lunch el cheapo and then go someplace nice for din-din. 3) it had a great view of the ocean and 4) was within walking distance to the beach. I'd recommend it to anyone.
Oh - and by the way, these pics are from my scrapbook, so excuse some of the borders. Anyway, the first thing we did was become beach bums for the first two days. Seriously. Because you just can't go to Hawaii and not hang out on the beach. We saw some pretty cool stuff though.
Check out what we saw this tourist making... pretty cool, eh?
My kids loved the beach and the ocean. It was this family trip in which my daughter became obsessed with collecting seashells. That was 5 years ago, and she still loves collecting them and talks about that trip to this day.
So - when in Waikiki, this is the place to go shopping. All sorts of trinkets here. But - watch out for pick-pockets.
I love this little coastal town. Ah... Laie... such memories. It's where I went to school. I hung out with friends. Had a few dates on the beaches... 'nuff said... suffice it to say, seeing this along side the road was nostalgic for me.
While attending school at BYU-Hawaii, like most students, I worked at the Polynesian Cultural Center (PCC, for Short). Most students that work here are on some sort of work-study program. I was a dishwasher, a backstage crew member and I even sold "pineapple delights" during intermission of the night show. So, of course we had to spend an entire day at the PCC. It also happened to be the week of their 40th anniversary celebration - so lots of "Extras".
Okay - so I can hardly stand to eat canned pineapple after eating like the best pineapple ever from here...
While you are here visiting the Dole plantation, you can also sample fresh pineapple juice...hmmm. They also sell yummy pineapple sundaes. Don't knock 'em till you've tried 'em. Seriously. If interested, they have a little train that can take you out to the fields too.
One thing you have to do while in Oahu is go to the Swap-Meet. It's basically a flea market. It's at the Aloha Stadium. Great prices. The best priced lava-lava (sarong) I ever bought was from here! ($10!!!)Here are the kiddies after a long windy day shopping their guts out for their souvenirs! Notice the Hawaiian cap on LittleDuckling's head, the floral "bracelet" on PrettyPrettyPrincess, and FunnyMan got some sort of "voo-doo" mask to hang on his bedroom wall. Super-cool!
The last day of our trip, we drove around the island and did our own little "Circle Island Tour". One of the stops was Haunama Bay State Park, looking down at all of the beach combers and snorkelers. We also stopped along the highway at watched the famous "blowhole" - where the waves crash through the rocks and resemble a whale's blow-hole. Don't know why we didn't take a pic of that... doh!... oh wait - we did take a pic. Just found it... but too lazy to edit a certain someone outta of the pic to whom I'm no longer legally and lawfully wedded to. Hey - it's my blog and I'll post what I want to! ;)This little quote is in the scrapbook of our trip, so I thought it'd be perfect to end our little Bloggy Spring Break adventure!
Hope you enjoyed crossing the ocean with me. Aloha!