General chatter - Hawaiian Vacation

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08-09-2007, 01:07 AM
I am going to Hawaii (Waikiki on Oahu) in about 10 days. Anyone have any special advice on things to do? We went last year and did a lot of the touristy things (Arizona Memorial, Dole Pinapple Plantation), but we are spending more time on Oahu this year. Last year we spent most of the time on the Big Island (Hawaii).

08-09-2007, 01:22 AM
KERRY ~ The only advice I have is to TAKE ME WITH YOU! ;)

My son goes often ~ my daughter has been 3 times ~ Angie has ben there 1 time ~ me = 0

I will talk to the kids and see! Have fun!

08-09-2007, 01:31 AM
We're staying at the Ilikai. I have a vacation club thing and they have some studio suites at the hotel. We have a full kitchen, so it's nice.

08-09-2007, 01:40 AM
Gary, I would take you in a heart beat, but what would I tell my hubby? Hmmm....I had to take my baseball coach?
Maybe you and Angie can go sometime. You certainly deserve it.

08-09-2007, 04:57 AM
You want to take a drive to the North Shore, go to Waimea Bay. There are some really good (and not too expensive) places to eat up north and the water is wonderful..
Best beaches if you just want to swim and veg are Kailua and Lanakai.
The south shores are pretty but the water is wild this time of year.
If you want to surf or boogie board there are lots of good places.
Waikiki is always nice but so crowded.
Definately take in the Swap meet on Weds or Saturdays. Lots of good stuff, and so inexpensive, 100s of booths.
The zoo is nice, but I found the aquarium too small for the price.
There is always so much to do, but the traffic is awful that is why I moved to kauai :).
Have a great time.

08-09-2007, 09:31 AM
I was there this May and my favorite thing was snorkeling at Hanauma Bay. We went early (before noon) but even then it was not nearly as crowded as Waikiki beach. I didn't want to leave, but I had to get out of the water sometime!!

The one thing I didn't get to do was go on a hike to a waterfall. Even though Kauai would be the place to do that, I still wanted to get that in on Oahu.

Have fun!

08-09-2007, 12:57 PM
I don't know if you have kids or not, but my DS (age 12) and I were in Waikiki for a week in early July. Unfortunately, we were there for a competition and we spent 5 of the 7 days in the convention center. But the days we had off were fun. We hiked to the top of Diamond Head (cheap, fun, not too difficult--but be sure to go EARLY because it gets hot and crowded). We took a submarine ride (not so cheap, but fun). We also had a rental car and drove up the south coast and east coast. It's amazing how big the island is! We didn't get a chance to go to the north or west coasts. I would have liked to go to the Arizona memorial and perhaps the Polynesian cultural center (I hear that is a whole day thing). DS would have enjoyed parasailing. We thought about the zoo and aquarium, but didn't do that. I heard that somewhere (the aquarium??) you can swim with the dolphins. There is a great preserve where snorkling is great--near where the famous blow hole is.

I bought a book (used from Amazon as I believe it is out of print) called Driving tours of Ohau. It had a lot of great ideas.

Have fun!

08-09-2007, 07:53 PM
I've never been to Hawaii. Heck, I've never been farther west than Wisconsin. But if I were going, the first thing I'd want to do is visit Dog the bounty hunter, lol. Yep, I'm THAT much of a dork!

08-09-2007, 08:37 PM
Holy Cow! ABC Stores! Those things just amazed me!! There were TWO in the hotel we stayed at. I swear (and you just TRY to prove me wrong) there is at least one every block in Waikiki. I have to admit, we spent a lot there, though. Each night, we'd run down and pick up our breakfast at the ABC store (our room had a fridge) so we could have breakfast at our leisure (and cheaper). I also got my bottle of wine down there so I could relax and read my book before bed while DS watched TV. We bought souvenirs and towels for the beach and T-shirts to bring home.

08-09-2007, 10:40 PM
I've never been to Hawaii. Heck, I've never been farther west than Wisconsin. But if I were going, the first thing I'd want to do is visit Dog the bounty hunter, lol. Yep, I'm THAT much of a dork!

If you're a dork, I am too. I already looked into that and he is out of town while I am there. Bummer. Hmmm....maybe a day trip to the Big Island to track down Leland???;)

I hear you guys about the ABC stores. I thought Circle K was bad in Arizona!

Where is the Swap meet?

Thanks for all of the tips...keep 'em coming

08-09-2007, 11:44 PM
Do you all mind me joining this conversation?
Just smack my nose with a rolled up newspaper if I'm butting in!

I've been to Kauai twice with my hubby, but this coming Feb/Mar my mother and my two sisters and I are going to maui.
I LOVE girl's vacations!

Anyway, I've never been to Maui, anyone here been there?

08-10-2007, 01:18 AM
We're staying at the Palms at Wailiea. Ground floor condo that is really gorgeous!

08-10-2007, 02:39 PM
Hey there, an O'ahu girl chiming in... the Aloha Stadium Swap Meet is the place to be to pick up all kinds of goodies, both local and very touristy. It's located in Aiea (eye-A-uh), about 5 minutes away from the airport, about 20 minutes away from Waikiki, 15 if you drive real fast :lol: If you've been to the Arizona Memorial, it's just across the highway a little ways north, you can't miss it. It's held in the parking lot of a stadium and costs $1 to get in. It's open Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. Sunday is the best day to go since it has the most vendors, but if your visit only allows a Wednesday or Saturday visit, that's OK too. I would plan on wearing lots of sunscreen and a hat--I even carry an umbrella on sunny days . Stop at a 7-11 and buy bottled water before you go in. You can get nice "Hawaiian" stuff (made in the Philippines :lol: ) housewares, stuff for your kitchen, aloha shirts, hawaiian print dresses and cute necklaces for cheap. They sell cheap luggage there as well, so in case you buy too much stuff, you can always find a bag to bring it home in. Don't forget to pick up some local and Asian snacks to try from Lin's. There are several booths there at the swap meet.

The Ko'olina lagoons beach on the west side of Oahu is beautiful and adjacent to the Ihilani hotel and Ko'olina marina. Parking is very limited, so go early and park for free, or go down toward the marina end and there is pay parking. I think you can even valet your car at the timeshare condo but it is pricey at $10, but it has great access to the lagoons. If you want a real beach experience (vs. man-made) do the Kailua or Lanikai beaches as suggested above, or even Ala Moana beach, right across from the shopping center. Lots of free parking there. I prefer Hanauma Bay for snorkeling (yes, even I, the non-swimmer have been snorkeling :lol: ) and just laying in the sun.

I would definitely try to take in the Polynesian Cultural Center, it is a day trip since it is in Laie on the north shore and only opens at 12 noon. I loved this place as a kid and still have to take my son there since he's never been yet (he's 8). It basically has little villages of all the different polynesian cultures (Samoan, Hawaiian, Tongan, Maori, Tahitian, etc.).

The Honolulu Zoo is much improved in recent years, although still small compared to mainland zoos. But it's right in Waikiki and is relatively inexpensive. The male lion was just euthanised due to ill health a few days ago, he was 21 years old, so pretty long in the tooth for a lion, but there are other great exhibits to see as well.

I've seen Beth, Tim and Duane Lee shopping around town in different places, but I've never seen Dog in person. I'm always on the lookout for SUV's on the freeway in case they are on the road, and I admit, Leland is hot for a young'un. We have the same birthday :love: :lol: I was watching an episode once and they were chasing a guy down near a park in my neighborhood, one of the scenes shows them making a phone call sitting in their car and they were parked right in front of my next door neighbor's house! But I digress... :lol:

Are you much of a shopper? I'm sure you've been there already, but Ala Moana shopping center is right outside of Waikiki, there's also the Waikele Outlet stores in Waipahu. Pearl Ridge shopping center is another mall near Pearl Harbor but kind of small.

Try some restaurants along Kapahulu Avenue right near Waikiki. Lots of ethnic places to try--if you're not doing the Paradise Cove Luau like someone mentioned above, try eating at Ono Hawaiian Food in Kapahulu. A real small place, but the food is great, especially the laulau or kalua pig. There's also Genki sushi or better yet, Tokuri Tei for the real deal sushi and sashimi :hun: . Tons of eating places around so just grab a tourist guide on the streets of Waikiki or at the airport and see what's out there. Lots of good restaurants right in Waikiki too... let me think about that one and come back later.

Someone was asking about Maui? I'm a tourist there also, but I really liked the Maui Ocean Center. Drive up to Haleakala to see the sunrise--you've got to head up there around 2 a.m. though ;) Drive up through Wailuku and beyond to Kahakuloa (you know where the rental car maps say not to go?) and visit my friend Auntie Lorraine at Lorraine Shave Ice. Rest up a bit and enjoy the shave ice and the view. Tell her I said hello and pet her Pug Ilio Mai for me :D.

I know I'm rambling but those are just a few of the things I'd do while visiting. If I think of more local experiences I'll post more later. Have a great time.

08-10-2007, 06:15 PM
Wow, thanks for the great advice everyone and especially melekalikimaka. I think I will have to print this thread and take it with me!

We are planning to go to the Polynesian Cultural Center this time. We splurged and got the "Super Ambassador" package. I know it's a bit extravagant, but it's our one big thing. We have a personal tour guide for one day as well as first row seating at the evening show with a sit down dinner. Did the luau last year and it was nice, but I really just enjoyed the show.

I'll have to get to the Leeward side of the island this year. I was looking at some pics of our hotel. Mind you, it is the same hotel we stayed at for 3 nights last year. We saw in the pics that there is a ramp on the back of the hotel that leads down to the beach! We did not know there was beach access last year. In fact, we couldn't find Waikiki beach until our last day. We are dorks!:dizzy:

I'll have to be on the look out for those SUVs!!

08-10-2007, 06:28 PM
You're welcome! I just came across this website: ( which is great for checking out beaches and things to do. It gives you an overview of the shape of the islands and the cities held within. Wow, I didn't know I could still get excited about where I live! :lol: I may have to go play tourist myself soon, I think I want to try one of those Duck Tours around the city. Go see the website!

Just a note of caution: the leeward side of the island is nice too, but be careful where you venture out toward the Waianae coast (out past Ko'olina). It is in the rougher side and there's only one way in and out. Not much out there for toursits IMO. Lock your car doors and keep your valuables with you--you know, common sense stuff like when you go vacation anywhere else.

I just thought of another place I would go see, the Nu'uanu Pali Lookout. It's just a windy lookout where Kamehameha defeated the army of Oahu and united all the Hawaiian islands. Beautiful views!

08-13-2007, 01:23 AM
One more week, ladies and gents. ACtually only 5 days till I meet up with DH in Phoenix. We leave a couple of days after that. WOOHOO.

08-13-2007, 02:26 AM
Have a great trip and we'll look forward to seeing pictures of the sites you saw when you come back! Wishing you safe travels :wave:

09-06-2007, 10:00 PM
I'm back now from my wonderful 2 weeks in paradise! We went to one of Dog's book signings (in Waipahu) and shook Beth's hand as well as one of their daughter's. Beth even patted me on the shoulder. I know, I'm just sounding like a stupid fan, but it's the first celeb I've ever met. More details to come later.


09-06-2007, 10:06 PM

Were her big as they look on tv?....:dizzy:

09-06-2007, 10:59 PM
I've seen her Gary... they're BIGGER :rofl:

you were talking about her feet weren't you????

09-06-2007, 11:29 PM
Of COURSE...what were YOU thinkin'? :D

09-07-2007, 12:39 AM
:lol3: You know...I didn't even notice "them" I was too star struck. And she really is a beautiful woman. She and Dog thanked everyone for coming. Please, they are the ones taking time away from their family to meet all of us crazy folks!

BTW, Gary, I just noticed you are tasting your goal in the back of your throat. Good for you!!!! :cheer:

09-07-2007, 01:14 AM
Gary, shame on you!!! :nono: :rofl:

This thread brought back such awesome memories! I spent a month in Hawaii back in January of 1974. I went to a small college in the midwest (Drury College) and they had what they call a "winter term." You either stayed on campus and took a 3 credit hour course and stayed drunk most of the month or traveled for 3 credit hours. My dad opted for me traveling - get month including air fare, hotel and one meal a day for $800.00. Ahhhhhhhh the good old days! We went to Oahu and Kaui and we loved every minute of it! We did the sit-down dinner at the Polynesian Cultural Center, saw the gorgeous waterfalls all over the island of Kauai and were supposed to go to Kona, but the "gas shortage" back in the day prevented this. I always wondered what that was all about, but we did have a great month on two of the islands.

Ahhhhhhhhhh the good old days!!!