This trip is special to me personally, but also in a big picture way; it opened up my eyes to a whole new way of being. It’s been so long since I’ve been on an airplane and that in itself was a journey, a good journey. Despite some scary turbulence, sleep deprivation, undesirable options for food selection, I felt that I got a lot out of it. It was fun and actually refreshing. It kept me on my toes.
It’s hard to describe every little thing I felt, experienced and saw in this beautiful part of the state, but here it goes. I’ve been posting some poems and photographs recently here on this blog:
bánh mì & fried chicken & chinatown oahu, hawaii memories
I also made a calm film:
Below are some highlights, tips and recommendations:
The beaches are so soul-fulfilling. My heart could drink up so much more of these early mornings of peace and tranquility. By the day it’ll be crowded, but that has its own energy in itself.
Tantalus Lookout at night. As suggested by a friendly local, this was such a view in person. There were a few of us here in the darkness trying to capture the beauty we saw. It just isn’t like the photograph, it’s better.
Can’t go wrong with the Honolulu Zoo since it’s so close to everything else. The animals living in there are so beautiful. The peacocks walk freely among the visitors.
Hiking at Diamond Head gives amazing views. There is a lot of walking for sure. I love it. There is one semi-scary part in which you have to walk up a ton of steps and then walk into a dark tunnel. Other than that, it was extraordinary! There is a “perfect” view at each level you walk up to.
Manoa Falls hike is, so far, my most favorite hike. The ultimate view that visitors come for is the waterfall. It isn’t the biggest, of course, but it is magical as all waterfalls are. Be aware, your shoes will get muddy!
Their flowers and plant life in general are exquisite! I couldn’t get enough of seeing all the colors in a natural setting and especially if you live in the city, it’ll be refreshing to see more green while driving/walking.
-Go early for hikes. The later in the day you wait, the more crowded it is to catch good views and more rushed you feel to move along as some people move at a faster pace.
-If you decide to rent a car, be careful when driving and aware of the cars ahead of you. I noticed that drivers tend to signal and make turns quickly, so be cautious.
-Time your outings because being stuck in traffic can be a bummer and some restaurants/attractions have special hours.
-Be mindful of parking and have some cash ready as some hiking/attraction areas will charge. They aren’t too expensive though.
-If you prefer a less crowded time at the beach, go in the early morning. You’ll still see some avid swimmers and surfers, but it’ll be really relaxing and quieter and the photography is amazing (but really, that’s true at any time of day.)
–Poke at Foodlands is delicious with lots of variety.
–Musubi (with a choice of chicken, spam or hot dog) at Foodlands and Musubi Cafe.
-Mango shave ice at Island Vintage
-Custard or plain malasadas at Leonard’s Bakery
-Of course, the traditional foods: poi, laulau, kalua pork, and haupia. One day, I hope to try the loco moco.
Has anyone gone to this island or the others? Do you have fun stories, advice or food/hiking suggestions? I’d love to learn more.