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Great vacation!

Tishomingo, Oklahoma
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162 posts
21 reviews
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Great vacation!

We returned last week from our vacation. It was my family of four (boys 4 and 7), we met my parents and 19 year old nephew. We stayed the first 3 nights at marriott Ko Olina, I loved it. It was very much like visiting two islands. It felt like I was able to savor a bit of Maui while in Oahu. Beautiful sunsets, nice resorts and I just love the open green grass with Palm trees. The pools there were perfect for all ages of kids. The lagoon was just ok, kind of cold but very appealing to the eyes. Monkey Pod was a good choice for food. We also drove into the small town that is maybe 5 minutes away for a few meals. If I had it to do over I would have eaten a meal at Longboards, it was average priced but the views made me wish we had eaten there. The small town had easy places like mcdonalds, Pizza Hut, outback, chilis, etc. the best place in town was the koa pancake house, difficult to find but worth getting lost! So the highlights: Pearl Harbor ( even though I've done the tour it's worth doing again and sharing with my son), we also went to the north shore and dole while staying there. We then moved to HHV. It was fine and met our needs but I wasn't a fan of the location. The rooms were nice and large and I was impressed with the mango ribs at tropics. The beach was nice too and the water in Waikiki was surprisingly much warmer than other beaches. The pool with slides was a hit with all but that pool was way too small and it didn't have enough chairs to accommodate guests. I personally prefer the Moana surfrider or Sheraton as I've stayed at both on different occasions. It was nice to be in Waikiki but I can only handle the busyness for so long which made me glad we had stayed some in ko Olina. We did walk to dukes, the hula pie was worth the walk! It was tough though with kids and my parent so we caught a cab back (maybe $12 but we all fit). Highlights: I love climbing diamond head, Hanauma bay snorkeling (although cold!!), picnic from food trucks at sandy beach while watching body surfers, blow hole, hike to manoa falls with breathtaking! My 4 year old was able to do this while holding my hand but my 63 yo dad had a hard time. Concerning diamond head, 7 year old made it but my dad and 4 year old didn't even attempt. I just love Hawaii! I think food is way overpriced though. In Oklahoma all kid meals are around $4 while in Hawaii $10! Same thing with adult entrees, at normal restaurants it's difficult to eat for less than $20 pp and that's conservative. However, we didn't spend a lot outside of food and lodging. The HHV charged around $60 extra per day because of parking and resort fee, but that's expected. Still the amazing things cost next to nothing, the hiking and beaches. Anyway, can't wait to go back. Maybe Kauai next year? So I get back to Oklahoma and open the garage to see my whole house is flooded from a faulty supply hose to toilet! What a mess, no house to live in for about 5 weeks! I'm saying this to warn people that it's not a bad idea to turn your water off when leaving home for an extended time. We had some someone checking on the house but this still happened. At least we had a great vacation, wouldn't mind spending the next 5 weeks back in Hawaii while waiting on my house!

Kapaa, Hawaii
Destination Expert
for Maui, Hana, Oahu
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45,924 posts
3 reviews
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1. Re: Great vacation!

Glad you had such a good time. Sorry about your house, what a mess!! Yes, food costs here can be an eye opener for those east of the Rockies. Just remember over 90% of our goods are shipped in. Thanks for taking the time to let us know how it went. Appreciate it!!

Los Angeles...
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137 posts
2 reviews
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2. Re: Great vacation!

Sorry about the house. Yuck. Thanks for the trip report. We are going end of June and are staying at Ko.olina and planning many if the activities you did, so reading this made me very happy :-)

Newcastle, Australia
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1,358 posts
39 reviews
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3. Re: Great vacation!

Great trip report. We are just in the planning stages of our next trip this coming September. We too love the Ko Olina area and try to split our time between both there and Waikiki.

Coming from Australia, we find that food prices are very cheap / reasonable so I guess we are lucky in that respect.

Hope your house repairs go smoothly for you.

Victoria, Canada
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3,783 posts
2 reviews
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4. Re: Great vacation!

Oh dear!! Well just keep remembering all the fun you had in Oahu, and I hope your clean up goes easily.

Loved your fun TR. In all my visits to Oahu I have never gone to the HHV. Maybe next time I will wander over for a look see.

San Jose, California
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64 posts
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5. Re: Great vacation!

Thanks for the TR! We have almost the same plans this coming August but we are starting at Waikiki and then Ko Olina. I too have doubts about the HHV but I think my kids (8 & 10) would like the pools there. Your report has me thinking I should change my hotel reservations while in Waikiki.

Why did you choose HHV over the Sheraton or the Moana Surfrider?

Tishomingo, Oklahoma
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162 posts
21 reviews
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6. Re: Great vacation!

I had previously stated at both the Sheraton and moans surfrider but it was before kids. I loved those hotels bit thought that right in the thick of the action with smaller pools and less beach may be too hectic to watch my kids. I also knew the kids would enjoy the slides at hhv. Therefore, I don't regret my decision and I like the history of hhv as far as famous guests. So again, no regrets but I don't know that I'd stay there again solely because of the distance to the hub of Waikiki.

Saint Cloud...
Destination Expert
for Oahu
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27,040 posts
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7. Re: Great vacation!

Nice trip report, thanks!

Sorry about what happened to your home!

Philadelphia, PA
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1,170 posts
43 reviews
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8. Re: Great vacation!

So sorry about your house! Just want to say about the food costs in Hawaii, that I think they are actually more reasonable than what I found in South Beach (Miami) this February! And at least in Waikiki you don't have to dodge pushy hostesses trying to drag you in to their restaurant from the street. That was all the justification I needed to keep spending my hard earned money in Hawaii instead.

Phoenix, Arizona
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41,595 posts
1,251 reviews
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9. Re: Great vacation!

Paragraphs would be a nice addition.

Glad that you enjoyed.

Hunt

Tishomingo, Oklahoma
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162 posts
21 reviews
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10. Re: Great vacation!

I agree and my home state has a lower cost of living than most other places in the world. Even though I'm very aware and plan to spend accordingly, it takes some getting use to. Although I must say that you can spend whatever you want to spend on food in Hawaii, but when we go on vacation we enjoy food. I would hate to go and eat most of my meals in chain or fast food restaurants.