If you are in Honolulu, catch the Bus #7. This bus will take you around the island. Make sure to stop in Haleiwa to eat the shave ice. Walk around in this little town. There is a small tattoo place there and have most of the islands' prints. There is also a thrift store close by where you can buy used Hawaiian t-shirts and Hawaiian dresses. It is cheaper than buying these in downtown Honolulu!
Don't leave Oahu by not going to the Polynesian Center. Go there early so you can visit all the villages. Watch the performance of the coconut-husking in the Samoan village. It is so much fun. Make sure to watch the performance of the students at night. The Hawaiian dances are awesome!!!
The Polynesia Cultural Center experience is a one-day adventure. Believe me, you have to have a whole day to go there. The fireworks display -Samoan Style is amazing.
The Polynesian Cultural Center covers 42 acres and I was amazed how huge it is! I saw how the Samoans make fire and climbed coconut trees with bare hands. We also watched the night show for the Haka war dance.
There is also the IMAX movie that we watched.
The canoe ride was nice. We passed seven Polynesian villages: Hawaii, Tahiti, Tonga, Samoa, New Zealand, Fiji and the Marquesas.
The tickets are $40 per person.
Go early. Visit the whole seven villages and watch the IMAX before watching the evening show.
Wear comfortable shoes. There's a lot of walking from village to village.
Put sunscreen and bring sunglasses.
Wear light clothes.
Bring a backpack filled with snacks, sandwiches and water/drinks if you are travelling with children.
The food is okay at the Polynesian Cultural Center, but the line to buy the food/drinks after the evening show is way too long.
Bring a camera with a flash. Capture the fire/war dance.
(Note: I didn't go to the Polynesian Cultural Center this time because I was there in 2002 but the price to get in is correct. I check it out myself. We paid $20 then. I think.)
It's a double adventure to take my family to the Atlantis Submarines. The whole Hawaiian tour beneath the sea took about 2 hours. I booked the Atlantis Submarine at the Pacific Beach Hotel at Waikiki Beach. There are two submarines: the red submarine and the yellow submarine. There was a trolley that came and pick us up outside our hotel. The trolley went from one hotel to another picking up other passengers of the submarine. We boarded into the Atlantis ship first and then travelled a few miles off shore. The instructions were done while we were cruising enroute to the submarine. The sub took us down to about 120 feet and tour us where the ships sunk. There are artificial reefs (the Atlantis Adventures sank the Carthaginian) to create an artificial reef. This was actually beneficial to marine life and attracted a lot of fish! (white mouth moray eel, milletseed butterflyfish, Hawaiian Dascyllus, bullethead parrotfish, bluestripe snapper, spiny puffer, puramid butterflyfish, pinktail durgon, sleek unicornfish, yellow tang and the sharks! Yes, we saw sharks and turtles. The sharks that we saw are called the whitetip reef shark and the blacktip shark.
Make sure to go to the bathroom first before you get in to the submarine! When you have children, make sure that they got potty! If you are claustrophobic, please don't go! The submarine is too small - looks like you are getting an MRI! It's kind of expensive to waste your money to get into the submarine and back out at the last minute! There were two tourists who backed out as soon as we were boarding the sub!
Don't take pictures with a flash, either. Because the windows are so thick - about three inches, you can't take any pictures at all because the flash will just bounce back! Take a picture without a flash instead.
If you are sea sick, make sure to take dramamine first before you board the ship and the submarine. You will enjoy the adventure better!
The drive to Nuuanu Pali State Park is breathtaking! I just love passing through the jungle- the tropical trees, the bamboos, the vines, the thick ferns covering the side of the mountains! It is so wonderful that the State of Hawaii preserve the nature! I just love smelling the jungle!
There is a lookout where you can see the ocean, the Kaneohe Bay, the China man's hat, etc. It is such a beautiful lookout!
There is so much to see in the island of Oahu but I make sure that I went to the windward side of the island -passing the Diamond Head, the Sealife Park, the Hanauma Bay. The views are spectacular! We planned the whole day. We had to swim at the windward side- where the locals swim and hang out. We watched the locals surf! Some of the local women just laid on the beach tanning or just walking with their string bikinis!!!
The local artists in Hawaii pooled their resources together and had this street exhibit along the Monserrat Avenue. The paintings are original. The artists are their to sign authographs! The paintings can be shipped right away if bought! The paintings depict the culture of Hawaii and the every sights of the islands. There are flowers, the ocean, the beach, the waves, the sand, the stars, the seashores. Their are also paintings of shells, coconuts, papayas, bamboos, pluemeiras, mountains,hibiscus, leis, and orchids. The local girls in their grass skirts, the blue waters, the fish....Some artists depict the Aloha dresses and the surfers! The local artists members range from young to old!
I am not sure why the islanders call it "The China Man's Hat!" The Chinese people don't really wear hats like the shape of this island. If I was to name it, I would name it "The Vietnamese Hat!" Why not? The Vietnamese people wear this kind of hat on a daily basis. The farmers wear them when they go the farm. Most of the villagers in Vietnam wears this hat. But, anyway, we went and visited the China Man's Hat. My camera doesn't have a good zoom lense so I am content with what I have and what I captured. I captured the view in my memory!
Cruising the H-3 is amazing. The H-3 is the most beautiful highway in the country! It snakes through the Ko'olau Mountains. This superhighway was built above the ground just to protect the fauna of Hawaii is just incredible. Kodus to the people in the government who thought about this! The view is breathtaking! The lush green mountains are covered with trees, ferns, bamboos, palmeras and acacia trees. The Pali is a beauty! I just love opening the windows of the car and just let my hair blown by the fresh wind of Hawaii!!! The smell of the mountains are priceless.
Does this island look like a rabbit to you? Not to me! Maybe, there is something in there that I don't see...I was told you can see the rabbit's ears and the rabbit's head- that is why the locals called this mountain as "The Rabbit's Island!" Irregardless, the blue waters and the seabreeze are just spectacular to see and to feel... The scenic drive going to see the Rabbit Island is just spectacular and amazing!
The sunset cruise is beautiful. We boarded the Ali'Kai (Catamaran Cruises- Ruler of the Sea). We boarded the ship and watched the 4th of July fireworks. The ship provided live entertainment and food. The singers are great and a lot of people have fun!
The drinks are extremely expensive in the cruise ship. It costs $10 per beer! And, or any drink - sprite or coke.
This is from the top of the Makapu'u hike on the East side of the Island of Oahu.
The hike is about 35 minutes long (one way). It's on a paved road so it's easy. If you are lucky, you will catch a glimpse of Whales off the shore.
That is Rabbit Island in the background.
Look at the map of the island. This hike is on the East side of the Island. You have to park along side of the road. Once you get near it, you can always ask people and they will direct you to the right place.
If you're interested in chess, feel free to stop by the "Waikiki Chess kiosk." Throughout the day and most of the night, there's _always_ several chess games going on, both blitz (five minute games, using a chess clock) and slow games (without the clock). It's fun and interesting to watch--there's often a number of spectators (both chess players and tourists) watching the action.
It may be a bit difficult to join in a game--many of the players are regulars who often play against each other. If you really want to play, my advice would be to bring your own set and chess clock (if you want to play blitz chess). Obviously if you can jump in to a game and prove yourself ("Hey, this guy isn't a patzer after all!"), it will be easier to play/join in more games.
Finally, in addition to chess, there are several other games that are frequently played under the same kiosk: shogi (Japanese chess), bridge, and sometimes even Scrabble!
While staying on Maui for one month, we lived only ten minutes from the delightful port town of Lahaina. We loved to visit to shop, have a nightcap, or eat in one of the restaurants.
At first glance, one would think that Lahaina is just another little town; however, it is quite pictureque, lovely, and full of life, day or night.
It is the second most visited spot on Maui (after the beaches!) I think one of the reasons so many people enjoy Lahaina is the location between the Auau Channel facing Lanai Island and the peaks and valleys of Mauna Kahalawai Mountains.
One drawback is the difficulty in finding a place to park. If all else fails, there are several public lots.
But, it's the history of Lahaina that is so fascinating. It started as an ancient Hawaiian fishing village. When the first Polynesian settlers arrived (over 1,000 years ago), Lahaina gave them abundant freshwater streams, green valleys, fertile volcanic soil for growing food,a wonderful climate, and a clean, bountiful sea. When the westerners arrived on their tall ships, Lahaina became quite popular because of its natural harbor. Several of the buildings revolve around those early fishing village days:
1. Old Fort Walls of Lahaina
2. Old Lahaina Courthouse
3. Seamen's Cemetery
4. Banuyan Tree Park
5. Buddhist Church of the Shogun Mission
6. Lahiana Harbor
7. Lahiana Lighthouse
These are just a few of the interesting sites in Lahaina.
It's a great place to visit either in the daytime or the nighttime because of its many restaurants, shops, and museums.
You can rent charter boats at the Lahaina Harbor or take a walking tour of the city with a self-guided map from the Old Courthouse Museum.
The Lahaina Lighthouse, I think, is unique looking. It does not resemble any other lighthouse that I have seen. It's the first lighthouse in Hawaii, and I was told that it predates ANY lighthouse on the US Pacific Coast!
Specifically, this lighthouse is located in front of the Pioneer Inn in Lahaina Harbor. It was built in 1840 for the purpose of aiding navigation for the whaleboats that would come ashore.
Originally, it was a 9-foot wooden tower. In 1866, it was increased to 26 feet, and was rebuilt in 1905. The Coast Guard dedicated this present concrete structure in 1916. They still use it today for navigation! In the beginning, whale oil was kept burning by a Hawaiian caretaker as a means of light.
It's best to walk to the harbor to see the lighthouse because of the limited parking.
n April of 1873 the huge Banyan Tree in Banyan Tree Park was planted to mark the 50th anniversary of Christian missionary work in Lahaina.
This tree covers about a full block on the water front. Interestingly, the base of the tree is close to the center, and the branches produce roots that grow to the ground and form a trunk, like a new tree; this helps support the tree. People say that the shady branches of this Banyan Tree, which was imported from INDIA, actually covers two thirds of an acre!
Today, this Banyan Tree is a popular site for local art shows. The photograph shows an art exhibition in the background. We were attending a local art exhibition at the time that we investigated the tree and found our about its interesting history.
When this tree was imported, it was only eight feet tall. Today, it stands over sixty feet high, and it has twelve major trunks in addition to its huge core.
There are many members in the community who carefully maintain the symmetrical shape of the Banyan Tree. Park benches surround the outskirts of the square where the tree is located.
Climbing on the tree or its branches are strictly FORBIDDEN.
I would imagine that this is a very popular site when the temperature increases because of the abundant shade it provides.
But, more importantly, this magnificent tree symbolizes the history of Lahaina.
We had great fun and learned a great deal when we visited the Sea Life Park Hawaii.
The Park is open daily from:
9:30 a.m. to
Since 1964 Sea Life Park Hawaii has been committed to marine education and conservation. It is an active participant in the American Zoological Association's Species Survival Plan for the HUMBOLDT PENGUIN.
The park's Penguin Habitat serves as a breeding site for this endangered species. It's also a center for the treatment and temporary shelter for undersized Hawaiian MONK SEAL PUPS.
Furthermore, it operates one of the nation's few breeding programs for the threatened GREEN SEA TURTLES. In addition, it provides care and a safe refuge for injured, native SEA BIRDS.
Sea Life Park Hawaii is an excellent place for the public to see dolphins, penguins, sea lions, sharks, green sea turtles, and sea birds.
There 16 areas in the park, including Whaler's Cove, Shark Gallery, Turtle Lagoon, Sea Lion Feeding Pool, Penguin Habitat, Open-Air Dining, Seaside Shopping Spree, and the Hawaiian Reef Tank.
This is a Park that appeals to both children and adults.
Upon arrival to the Halekulani you are greeted at the desk and assigned a staff member to tour you...more
The hotel room I had, had a balcony. When I looked to the right, I had a view to the ocean.more
2417 Prince Edward Street, Honolulu, Hawaii, 96815, United States
Good for: Business