Vacation Flashback – Hawaii Pt. 1

If you follow me on Facebook, you may have noticed that I was on vacation in Cabo San Lucas last week. You may have expected some sort of trip report around that this week.

Nope. I plan to post something about my Mexican vacation, but while Small Pond was dry, I went somewhere else and feel a need to catch you all up on my trip to Hawaii.

Deal.

wildhair

cheeseburgerWe started the Hawaii trip in Honolulu. After checking in, we made a beeline for one of my favorite restaurant chains: Cheeseburger (née Cheeseburger in Paradise until Jimmy Buffet sued). The place has some of the best burgers I’ve ever had. If you find yourself on one of the Hawaiian islands, head to your nearest Cheeseburger. You won’t be sorry.

Our stay on Oahu was full of the typical tourist stuff. We attempted climbing Diamond Head, but I had a bad cold and wasn’t feeling it when we hit the stairs. Fail. But it’s an excuse to go back soon, right?

shootigWe paid a visit to Pearl Harbor where I shot a beam of light out of a gun. Okay, the cloud and sun conditions were aligned just so. We took a ton more pictures but they tend to look like everyone else’s photos of Pearl Harbor so I’m not posting them here.

It’s easy to look at Pearl Harbor as a checkbox on things you have to do in Hawaii. When you get there, it becomes a place you appreciate. The park has lots of educational material with movies and models to help visitors understand what happened. The Arizona Memorial still manages to inspire quiet reflection even if your visit is at the same time as a high school band.

We tacked on visits to the Bowfin sub (where the light cannon pic was taken), the Missouri and the Pacific Aviation Museum. I recommend expanding your Pearl Harbor visit to include these  – it’s a fuller picture of WWII.

elivsWe stopped at a couple of small towns along the North Shore. Oddly enough, we ate at a semi-ok Mexican place under this dapper fellow.

I think this is my first real-life sighting of an honest-to-god Elvis on black velvet painting.

The other highlight of the trip was snorkeling. We went once at Turtle Bay where we saw no turtles and once at Hanauma Bay where we did see a turtle.

Hanauma Bay was awesome. Visibility was great, and we saw so many fish! In fact, once you were 6 inches from the water’s edge, you were already in the midst of colorful fish. This is definitely a place I want to come back to. You know, when I actually climb all of Diamond Head.

malasadaIf you go to Hanauma Bay, make sure you stop by Leonard’s for malasadas first. They’re the perfect start to any snorkeling day. Heck, they’re the perfect start to any day and may rival beignets as my favorite trip pastry.

 

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