Hawaii – Day 1 & 2 (Oahu): Sleep, Sand, and Sea Turtles

After a completely unanticipated (and unfortunate) 4 month hiatus from blogging, I’m finally back and I plan to keep it that way! Though my blogging activity has been nonexistent, the past 4 months have been very eventful for me – I graduated (finally), accepted a job offer (I’ll be starting this coming Monday), and went on a family vacation to Hawaii! So with that said, my next few posts will be recounting our adventures on the trip. Hope you enjoy!

 

Day 1: Tired Traveling

Our flight left at some ungodly hour Sunday morning after I decided it would be a swell idea to go to the Saturday night Pirate game. “Sure I’ll only get like 3 hours of sleep,” I thought, “but I’ll just sleep on the plane!” After all, I’ve always had a great deal of success with that. So after our 10 hours of flights (in which I managed about a half hour of interrupted, uncomfortable napping), we landed on Oahu in Waikiki around 3PM local time. We checked into our hotel (see the photos for the beautiful view we had) and ate dinner at California Pizza Kitchen (when in Hawaii right?). Waikiki is home to some serious shopping (Tiffany, Louis Vuitton, etc.), so if that’s your thing, then it’s a dream destination. Another random and amusing (in my opinion) Waikiki tidbit is that its famous beaches aren’t natural – sand is dredged from the ocean floor and deposited on shore. I found it funny how we basically created our own paradise. But anyway, after dinner, we headed back to the hotel and crashed after a long day of travel.

 

Day 2: No Rest for the Weary

We awoke early the next day, still not completely on Hawaiian time, and headed out for the day. Our first stop was at Pearl Harbor, where we toured through the various museums and took the ferry to the memorial of the USS Arizona. It’s a powerful and indescribable experience to visit these sites where so many lost their lives. For me, it was a mix of pride, in how we overcame such a tragedy, and despair, because I couldn’t help but think of the methods we used to win the war. Without getting into anything further, I will say that I have the utmost respect for those who serve at any time in the armed forces.

Our next stop that day was at the Dole plantation. It’s kind of a tourist trap type of destination and is really geared more for kids, but I still learned something out of it – how pineapples grow (hint: not in a tree, which was what I thought). The main thing to do there is walk around the grounds of the garden, which is full of different Hawaiian plants and such. There’s an audio tour that goes along with the walk, though after about 3 stops, I got tired of hearing the story of plants over and over.  In addition to the Garden walk, there’s a maze and the “Pineapple Express,” a mall-Santa-style train that drives through the grounds (as you can tell, a kids-oriented place). The walk provided enough pineapple-fueled excitement for the day after the walk, so we left and continued our drive around the island.

After the plantation, we drove along the coast to Hanauma Bay, which is famous for its snorkeling. Though the water was a little murky, we still saw plenty of fish in the reef and even swam next to a sea turtle for a little bit! It was a beautiful park and a great way to end the day.

 

And so, our first 2 days in paradise came to a close. Check out the pics for a little more information on the various places and let me know what you think!

Not too shabby a view from our front porch.

Not too shabby a view from our front porch.

View of more of the city of Waikiki from our hotel.

View of more of the city of Waikiki from our hotel.

The outside of the USS Arizona memorial.

The outside of the USS Arizona memorial.

Inside the USS Arizona memorial. The monument was built directly over-top the sunken ship. Oil is still leaking from the wreckage and is predicted to continue for the next 80 years.

Inside the USS Arizona memorial. The monument was built directly over-top the sunken ship. Oil is still leaking from the wreckage and is predicted to continue for the next 80 years.

The names of those who gave their lives on board the USS Arizona. The front two falls flanking the larger one are names of those who passed in later years but were entombed inside the Arizona.

The names of those who gave their lives on board the USS Arizona. The front two falls flanking the larger one are names of those who passed in later years but were entombed inside the Arizona.

Inside one of the museums at Pearl Harbor.

Inside one of the museums at Pearl Harbor.

How pineapples grow!

How pineapples grow!

An incredible lookout of Rabbit Island along the coast of Oahu.

An incredible lookout of Rabbit Island along the coast of Oahu.

Hanauma Bay

Hanauma Bay

Me (left) and my brother Ryan (right) getting ready to go snorkeling.

Me (left) and my brother Ryan (right) getting ready to go snorkeling.

Sea turtle! Video credit goes to my brother.

(Because I'm an Electrical Engineer) I took a picture of light that can run on solar or wind power.

(Because I’m an Electrical Engineer) I took a picture of light that can run on solar or wind power.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s