Some observations from travels


A Quick Stop to…Honolulu

As promised this post was meant to start on my return to the Gold Coast.  Along the way let’s visit Honolulu for a quick stop.

I was fortunate enough to join a company trip to one of the islands of Hawaii.  This was my first time to visit the islands and it was a nice experience.  Hawaii is made up of six major islands – Kaua’i, Oahu, Moloka’i, Lana’i, Maui, and the big island of Hawai’i.  Each island boasts its own distinct feature.  Honolulu is on the island of Oahu, and our hotel was smack bang on the beach of Waikiki, where the majority of the hotels and touristy spots are found.

From the moment we touched ground, dropped out luggage and off we went to have lunch at the Veranda at the Beachhouse in one of Waikiki beach’s iconic buildings – Moana Surfrider.  Then is was a matter of settling our stuff and taking in the views.

The following day we promised to get up early for a dip on the (protected area) beach across the road from our hotel.  Then more sightseeing and exploring Waikiki.  Later in the day we gathered out appetite for an evening of cultural immersion – Luau.  We chose to join the Paradise Cove Luau, and was happy to learn that they were the preferred choice amongst the many options available.  We got picked up near our hotel along with 51 other bus members to a secluded area along the beach of Ko Olina Resort.  The main man of the night would have to be our tour guide – Rich.  For those of you who have not been to a Luau I highly recommend you join one next time.  It is packed with entertainment from the different villages or islands such as joining a traditional Hawaiian games, making flower leis, boys learning to dance the hukilau and of course partaking in the buffet of delicacies from the time-honoured cooking at the Imu Ceremony.

The next day it was a day of double deck bus city tour.  You gotta have a double-decker bus tour! It’s just fun.  Luckily, there were only my friend and I during the first half of the tour, so we had the tour guide to ourselves on the top of the bus.  Although I was disappointed that it wasn’t a hop-on hop-off bus.  The city of Honolulu has many historical buildings and interesting places.  Firstly, we were picked up in from of the statue of Duke Kahanamoku along the beach then driven around the city to our main stop at Chinatown.  Then after a couple of hours walking around downtown Chinatown we hopped on back on the bus to finish the second half of the city tour.

So, it was our last day in Honolulu and we haven’t even ticked half of our wish list.  Unfortunately, it was school holidays when we went and interacting with dolphins seemed to be the number one activity tourists want to do in Hawaii.  Who wouldn’t! It is such an experience.  Then looming in the historical background was Pearl Harbour! What to do!

We opted to give Pearl Harbour a miss and went for the next best thing to be closer to dolphins.  Fortunately for us there was still space for a boat ride to snorkel and swim with wild dolphins!  I highly recommend this tour option – Ko Olina Ocean Adventures.  The speed boat was smaller (than a catamaran) and able to take us closer to where the dolphins are.  We had many chances to snorkel to swim and feed fish, turtles and dolphins!  It was such a great experience.

I would love to visit the other islands when the chance comes up.  But, I must admit, the beaches of the Gold Coast awaits and it’s so much better.  See you soon.