Tackling Honolulu in 24 hours with Waikiki beach fun

Yes when you get news you have a long layover in Honolulu Hawaii of all places it is like you stepped out of a nightmare and right into a dream. My path to Honolulu was definitely not blue skies as there are few things worst then being told you won’t make a leg of an international trip.  So after a night of being puked on by a baby and a couple of hours sleep in LA I was stood at a counter close to tears about my flight to Tokyo.  Luckily an unexpected blessing was coming my way as although there were no flights to Tokyo in the next 2 days out of LA I could connect in Hawaii for a long layover.  No question my answer was yes!!!

 

So what do you do in Honolulu with just a day there and no real preparation for your trip? Well that’s easy.  First is just to remember there is always a silver lining and just be grateful.  After that immediately book a hotel room around Waikiki, buy some flip flops, and go flying towards the beach.   Just to highlight all the wrongs made a right on this trip for me a rainbow popped up to highlight my great luck.  The Waikiki beach and sunset is nothing short of amazing.  It is a great time to give pause to just what a blessing life is.  And as things are looking up there is still a ton to do in Honolulu once you get your beach time in.

The Waikiki beach area has really built itself up with great shopping and restaurants all within an easy walking distance. With their late night hours and busy walking traffic you almost get a baby Vegas strip vibe.  We set off to do a little shopping and fill our bellies as we took on the 24 hour Hawaii challenge.   The only downside of a very commercial build up is that you can lose some of the more authentic stores that are a real refection on Hawaii.  So after popping in a couple of Urban Outfitters and other stores we decided that food was the new top priority.  To start Hawaiian shaved ice!!! Okay I had a mild obsession while I was pregnant but my love did not prepare me at all to an authentic Hawaiian twist.  At Island Vintage Coffee Shave Ice they had fresh favors and Hawaiian ingredients that were one of a kind.  Not to mention how amazingly light the ice was.  It was a great warm up for what was to come.

We took some good advice from a stranger also scarfing down shaved ice and wandered into a newly renovated shopping center, the International Market Place.  In addition to some great luxury shopping options the third floor is dedicated to some great eats and good times.  On the weekends they have live entertainment and the band that was rocking 80’s music and 70’s funk had my son getting his serious grove on.  At the Eating House 1849, the food was an eclectic mix of Asian Hawaiian influences and the 1849 Spicy Ramen Bowl and Tavern Style Fried Chicken were a perfect cap to a long day.

Up in the morning and while my mind is on Tokyo there is still time for some final Hawaiian moments. We heard that the Island Vintage coffee company with their honey latte was the place to be and the long line we faced confirmed the recommendation.  With a gorgeous grassy area and great view of the boulevard it is a great way to wake up your day in Hawaii.  It is a great reminder that the best memories happen in a moment.    You don’t always have to have an extended stay, just a fabulous location with the ones you love can give you the opportunity to make memories that last a lifetime.

Adventure Time – 5 Musts on a Hawaiian vacation

Paradise Cove us and luau dancersHawaii is renowned as a perfect travel destination and with the wide assortment of things to do once you get there it can be hard to narrow down the activities that give you the best experience at the island.  In my recent family trip to Hawaii I planned on a mix of relaxation and adventure in enjoying the beautiful island.  Here are my recommendations of must’s when visiting the island. Mahalo!

Paddleboarding in HawaiiBeach Day – With some of the beautiful beaches in the world, Hawaii surf and sand begs you to just stop and enjoy.  I am one to love an adventure packed vacation, however, there is something to be said for doing nothing on the beach in Hawaii.  The beach outside of the JW Marriott was a great place to just sit and enjoy the perfect weather, beautiful sands and crystal clear water Hawaii has to offer.  Once you have gotten a chance to chill out you can always pick up the pace with a paddleboard or water hammock if you book a hotel that offers these fun amenities.  In nothing else, naps on the beach are always amazing!

Hawaiian sunsetSunrise or Sunset – There are few moments in nature that offer more clarity as to how magnificent the world and its Creator are than a brilliant sunrise or sunset.  It shows just a glimpse of just how complex the world really is and just how small of a piece we occupy on it.  This perspective is a great way to get put things in order the things that stress you in your own life that seems big, but really may be a small problem in the grand scheme of things.

Waimea Falls Waterfall 3Waterfalls – Part of the joy of vacations is exploring all of the things that we cannot do or see locally.  The waterfalls in Hawaii top my list as it is a great way to get in tune with nature and an essential variation on the fun and the sun that Hawaii is known for.  For some family fun the waterfalls at Waimea Falls Park offers not just an easy hike through a botanical garden to get to the falls, but some great cultural knowledge along the way.  Waimea Falls Waterfall 1The entire trip was breathtaking and jumping into the falls was an exhilarating family moment we will remember forever!
Stop and enjoy the beautiful views – In taking a look at the scenes in Hawaii you can tell that God was flexing his muscles when he made the island.  Waimea Falls Park Creek Hawaii Trip (26)It is not just the winding roads of the north beach with views of the mountains and the beach, but at almost every turn you get an eye full of nature’s beauty. Even off the beaten path in a resident recommendation for a restaurant we found some great views and local fun that really makes a trip personal.  To take it up a notch we visited Kualoa Ranch which takes you deep in the undisturbed terrain of Hawaii that made it a perfect location for movies like Jurassic Park.  At the top of a mountain with an incredible view it’s hard not to miss the peace that nature has to offer.

Luau – Although it has begun to sound like a clique, the luau is not just a great show, but some real insight to the beautiful culture of the Hawaiian people.  Paradise Cove LuauWe were on the fence about going as they can be pricey, but those concerns disappeared once we stepped into Paradise Cove.  The luau was its only adventure and living museum all in one as you got to explore the games, lifestyle, clothing, and food of the Hawaiian people.  All this on top of such a great show and you pay for the luau pretty quickly and walk away happing yelling Mahalo to all you see. Paradise Cove Luau Dancers Paradise Cove Sarong Demo Paradise Cove Painting

 

 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...