Author Archives: Greg

Waikiki

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Looking at the Waikiki surf from our hotel balcony

We were a bit overwhelmed when we arrived in Honolulu after being in Maui and Kauai. Lots more people and high-rise buildings. Our hotel, The Outrigger Reef, is right on the beach. We can watch people surfing from our balcony  and the restaurant is about 10 metres from the water’s edge.

Spent the whole day on the beach … hired beach umbrellas and chairs. It seemed weird to get the SUP from the storage, walk past the pool and onto the beach. I was up at dawn to get uncrowded surf. The waves look small in the picture above but there were 4 foot sets and I had a ball. Cathy had a couple of SUP sessions and enjoyed the scenery of the Waikiki shoreline. Lots bare (female) butt cheeks on display on the beach … I didn’t know which way to look.

Check out the video below of my walk (with SUP) to the beach. Some scenic shots of Diamond Head and our hotel. Also some footage of Cathy supping.

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Last day in Kauai

We really do not want to leave this island. Our time here has been truly memorable … great beaches, stunning scenery, delicious food and friendly locals. Cant wait to come back.

Off to Oahu tomorrow for some chill-out time on Waikiki beach after such an energetic holiday.

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Cathy watching the entertainment after dinner at our hotel.

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Surfing in paradise

Watch the video below and take notice of the backdrop to the surfing. It’s just great paddling around and soaking up the surroundings of Hanalei. The surf reef is called “Summers” and is about one kilometre from the shore. We are now really set up … our hotel has loaned us beach chairs and an umbrella.

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Helicopter and Hula

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Kauai’s Na Pali coast from our helicopter.

Best day of the trip so far. The helicopter tour over the entire island was just mind blowing. We both had front seats beside the pilot and both admitted to almost bursting into tears it was so emotional. Music matching the scenery was playing through our Bose noise cancelling headphones as our pilot gave a narration of  sights below us. We flew close to lots of waterfalls, into massive valleys and over rugged coastlines. You could easily imagine dinosaurs still roaming around on this island.

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Fire lighting ceremony at the Marroitt Courtyard hotel in Kauai.

Our hotel put on a great Hula fire lighting ceremony followed by some really cute local kids performing on the stage at the restaurant where we were having dinner. I was one of 4 lucky blokes chosen to perform a bit of hula for the audience … embarrassing but very funny.

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Kauai tourists

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We’ve been exploring the island of Kauai over the last couple of days. The most breathtaking scenery so far was at Waimea Canyon. After a snaking our way up a narrow road to 3500 feet we were treated to the “Grand Canyon of the Pacific” … the photos don’t really do it justice.

Did the locals thing today and parked on the beach at Hanalei (where Puff the magic dragon lived by the sea). This beach has become our favourite. The weather changed every 20 minutes … rain – sun. The surf was really good but it was a long paddle out to the reef. There was only one other guy out so there were plenty of waves. Cathy hired her own SUP today and had a great time paddling around the bay.

We are enjoying the local seafood and, of course, the tasty cocktails.

Looking forward to the helicopter tour tomorrow.

The time-lapse video below was taken on a 20 minute trip along the coast from Hanalei Bay to Tunnels Beach.

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Kauai

First day in Kauai. Another beach view room, this time on the east coast. Live entertainment every night and a free Mai Tai each every afternoon. Not as busy here and getting around in our hire car is really easy. Went to Hanalei Bay on the North Shore today … about a half hour drive from our hotel. It was Sunday and all the locals were out for their weekly picnic at the beach. Big pickup trucks backed right onto the beach – cabanas – BBQs etc.

Hired a great SUP and had to paddle a long way out to a reef break which was small but fun. Cathy had a paddle in the bay. The view from the bay was breathtaking … huge, steep mountains – waterfalls – gorges. The mountain was topped with cloud. Apparently it is the wettest place on the planet … over 400 inches of rain per year.

We drove as far north as you can go by road to a place called ‘Tunnels’. There are no words that adequately describe the scenery there. Tomorrow we are going back equipped for a bit of a walk.

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Hanalei Bay, Kauai. Locals doing their Sunday picnic on the beach.

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Maui magic

Still more of the same … sun, surf, scenic drives etc. Had lunch in an old pub on the waterfront at Lahaina yesterday and had a stroll around the town. There is an amazing Banyon tree in the town centre which is only one tree but has lots of trunks which are all connected to a huge main trunk with vine-like branches.

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Banyon tree in Lahaina … just a single tree

Went on a bit of a road trip today and stopped at a renowned ukelele shop in Wailuku. Lots of great hand made traditional Hawaiian instruments and a talented musician to demo some of the ukes. Being a guitar player from way back, I bought a nice uke and the guy gave me a free lesson and I can already knock out a few decent tunes.

We had lunch in Paia which is a lot like Byron Bay … a bit alternate but lots of character. Finished up at Hookipa which is a famous surfing and wind surfing spot. The trade winds were howling and we saw some spectacular wind surfing.

Last full day in Maui tomorrow. It will be hard to leave but we are looking forward to a new adventure in Kauai.

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Cant get much more relaxed than this. Playing the new ukelele in our front yard at Maui. Stunning scenery.

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Maui Sunset

I keep banging on about the amazing sunsets we are seeing every afternoon from our balcony at the Aston Mahana on the Kaanapali coast in Maui. Below is a time lapse movie of today’s sunset. The island of Lanai is on the right and the island of Molokai is on the left.

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A day in Maui

We are now over the jetlag and are starting to enjoy this fantastic island. Check the video below which captures a typical day for us.

We drive our Dodge Journey SUV for an early surf (still very small) and then look for a local lunch venue. Today we drove to Kihei and had some great local seafood at a place called ‘Coconuts’. After lunch we come back to our condo and hang around the pool – there may be a little napping involved.

Our condo is fantastic – it is so close to the ocean it feels like we are aboard a ship. Sunsets on our balcony are magnificent.

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Maui — our first day

Business class flight from Sydney very nice (comfy leather recliner, 3 course meal and plenty of free grog). Nearby kid screaming for 6 hours non-stop made sleeping a little difficult.

Went out to Dukes on the beach last night – fire lanterns, multi-coloured cocktails, great food and atmosphere to get us into the Hawaiian lifestyle.

Went to Puamana beach park near Lahaina today. Lots of people there for a Sunday picnic and surf. First go on the hire sup in the small surf a little wobbly but had lots of fun. This is truly sup heaven and there were heaps of locals out but they were spread out and there were plenty of waves to be had.

Did the big Safeways grocery shop on the way home and saw a live hula performance at the shopping mall.

Cathy is loving the relaxed atmosphere and the view from our balcony of the sun setting into the ocean.

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Puamana beach park near Lahaina

 

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iPhone snap of a hula show at our local shopping mall

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