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We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

Hartford...
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We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

We've just arrived home after a typical flight from Oahu to the East Coast on the mainland. Our trip was fantastic. I'll give a few details later after I've rested a bit but here are a few thoughts just off the top of my head:

1. Don't worry about your daytime wardrobe; wear your bathing suit and a sarong. Nighttime: suit yourself but keep it casually elegant. High heels are Not neccessary!

2. Don't worry about how you'll divide up your stay between islands. We stayed put for 10 days on Oahu and would have been perfectly happy to stay there another 10 days. Rent a car with a gps, get a towel, get inside tips from the bellmen, get lunch and get lost. It's all good.

3. Aloha is not just a greeting or a goodbye but rather an approach to life. It takes more than a short visit of 10 days to 'get it' but just being polite and respectful goes a long way toward enjoying the best of Hawaii (its residents).

4. Once is not enough and we hope to return to Hawaii.

More to follow once I'm rested and my apologies if this post rambles! Again, Mahalo for your help; it was invaluable.

massachusett
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1. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

Love your attitude... Great traveling advice,. " get lunch, and get lost" That's the only way to explore such a wonderful destination like Oahu, along with being polite & respectful

I'm going back from the east coast for seconds next August, and can't wait.

My only negative experience on Oahu is..... getting there...it's too far away.

Hope to be reading your trip report soon :-)

Any pictures to post

Edited: 25 August 2012, 22:37
Wollongong...
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2. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

Thats some great advice....get lunch and get lost. Brilliant!

Cant wait for your trip report.

Merced, California
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3. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

What a wonderful trip report....

I agree completely ... the people of Hawaii are its greatest treasure.

Learning the meaning of Aloha... is truly important.

Kapaa, Hawaii
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for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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4. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

I'm glad you had a great time, robfg. I SO understand what you are saying. Looking forward to your report. Thanks for taking the time.

Houston, Texas
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5. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

Love that you give a general dress code for the island. Will help with packing alot for a first timer! thanks!!

Santa Monica, CA
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6. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

Perfect advise for anyone! Thanks for sharing. It sure is a long trip from Connecticut, my home state. Glad you made it. Hawaii does get under your skin in the best way! Aloha.

Lisburn, United...
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7. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

Thanks for your posting. My wife and I are heading to Oahu in ten days time for 26 nights. Although we have been many times before, we still enjoy the island ( have also been to Kaui and the B.I.), we always see something new. It is amazing that shop owners recognise us from our accent each year. This gives us a true feeling of Aloha.

You are right when you say get lunch and get lost. This is what we always do.

Now you can imagine why we, who have to travel 23 hours to get to Paradise, enjoy Oahu so much.

Looking forward to your trip report.

John.

Hartford...
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8. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

8/15: We had a great flight from Hartford to Atlanta to Honolulu on Delta Air on an Airbus. Very nice flights and after a late start in Hartford due to weather in Atlanta, they were uneventful.

8/15: Arrived Honolulu around 2:00, got our rental car from Avis, with a GPS (get one, you'll be happy you did) and headed to our hotel, Waikiki Marriott Resort and Spa. We were so happy to have the GPS! Check-in was fast, professional, warm and inviting. The lobby here is nothing too special, the carpets near the elevator are worn but the property as a whole is fantastic and I would recommend this hotel to everyone. More about the resort later. Our huge 12th floor balconied room in the 'K' building, newly re-done, very fresh and current, overlooking the pool, afforded an ocean view room (not partial view nor oceanfront) and view of Waikiki down to the pink Royal Hawaiian. It was gorgeous. We enjoyed drinks on the balcony everynight and coffee there in the morning. We loved hearing the poolside music nightly until 9:00 when all became as quiet as a tomb. I'd stay here again.

8/16: Waited in line at Eggs and Things (why bother and we didn't go back). Has some waffles with too much whipped cream and a Japanese Rice bowl. Pedestrian food, in my opinion, but the service was fast and the atmosphere is fine if you don't mind eating on paper, plastic, and styrofoam. We do mind, so this was a one off. We headed out and took the coastal route from Honolulu around Oahu to Turtle Bay.

All the superlatives apply: Stunning, spectacular, unique and breathtaking. We stopped at each scenic overlook and marveled. What a beautiful State! The United States is a beautiful country. We wore swimming suits and cover-ups for this roadtrip and I was so glad I did! We stopped at various little beaches along the way and waded in to cool off. We had signed out towels from the hotel pool earlier. We never got to Snorkel Bob's for chairs or snorkel equipment; we did ok with renting both throughout our visit. Frankly, we really enjoyed traveling 'light' and having a few towels was effortless to carry from here to there.

A word about the beaches: Be careful. We are experienced swimmers and sailors and boatsmen. We know and love being on the water. Nothing in our past experience could prepare us for the riptides, strong currents, sudden dropoffs in the wate that are present in Hawaii. We enjoyed swimming all over Oahu but we were careful and we obeyed all the signs. We just didn't take any chances here and it made our trip fun, safe, and relaxed. We read all week about people being swept out to sea or drowning while snorkeling and it didn't make us fearful but it did make us aware of and have respect for our surroundings., Everything looks lovely and safe on the ocean's surface, (the colors of the waters are amazing!) and belies the turbulence underneath. Enjoy yourself but be careful!

We had malasada's at the Leonard's truck in the shopping plaza. They were delicious and unique, not at all like fried dough nor beignets. We had plain with sugar and filled with custard. I'm a plain fan, my husband loved the custard filled malasadas.

We stopped for shrimp at Giovanni's Shrimp truck. We split 12 and 2 scoops of rice and it was plenty for 2 of us. We also had some grilled corn at the stand right behind the dining pavillion. Giovanni's (or similar) is a must have, in my opinion. The shrimp were really fresh and delicious. This is not a health food choice; they're loaded with oil! The fresh garlic is not a bad thing, however....I was happy to find the sink with plenty of soap adjacent to the pavilion because you have to eat this shrimp with your hands. Delicious lunch! We continued on to Turtle Bay Resort and had drinks there. I threw on a maxi-sundress, my sunhat, big sunglasses and fit right in. Lovely setting. I wonder what it's like to stay there? It is, perhaps, too isolated for our taste.

We drove along the coast until we made a mistake (had turned off the GPS hours earlier so we could just wander) and ended up at the Dole Plantation. We didn't do the tour but we had pineapple ice-cream and bought a lot of sweet food to give as gifts. We spent about an hour there and headed back into Honolulu.

Evening: We had a drink by the hotel pool, enjoyed the live entertainment very much, and then had dinner at dkSteak in our hotel. Great meal, stay away from the ridiculous Caesar salad with the ridiculous pre-packed croutons and enjoy their delicious house salad instead. It's all a la carte; we had truffle mac and cheese, baked potato and we split an aged NY Strip. Everything was delicious.

Early night and we were asleep by 10:00.

Hartford...
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9. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

I should have included that we had dinner at Duke's bar on our first evening. It was fun, the sunset was gorgeous, and the ribs were delicious!

Hartford...
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10. Re: We Had A Wonderful Time...Mahalo

8/17: We had the breakfast buffet in our hotel. $18.00 pp and they offered Everything. Good value and very convenient.

We went to Pearl Harbor. We arrived right before 11:00 and we were able to get into the 12:45 viewing. We took the time to go through the gift shop and one of the exhibitions. We didn't visit any of the other ships other than the Arizona.

It's a moving place. It would have been much appreciated if people didn't EAT on the Memorial! I was just disgusted. Someone spoke up, not a Ranger, and was yelled at by the munching visitor. Not a nice thing. Signs are posted everywhere...there's no reason for this bad behavior.

Leave your bags and purses behind. It's not convenient to store them onsite at the facility. I left my things at the hotel; my husband had everything we needed in his wallet. We took our time here.

We had eaten so much at breakfast that we were fine with a little nosh by the pool when we returned to Waikiki. We had dinner at Sensei Sushi. It was fabulous. Try the unfiltered saki. It was the second best sushi we enjoyed on Oahu.