Saturday, April 13, 2013


We are back in New Zealand but I will continue writing into this Blog with our day by day activities over the last week for the next few days. We had no internet in our hotel room. We seemed to be on the go every day in Honolulu. It simply was not very convenient to go sit in the lobby when I was dropping from the humidity, heat and activity. As you will read, we have had a wonderful time and we left Hawaii with reluctance. It will be good to catch up with family otherwise there is nothing to keep us in NZ. I do get homesick sometimes but not on this trip.

Hawaii time:- 6 am. Thursday, 11th April. 2013 
New Zealand time:- 4 am. Friday, 12th April. 2013

Today is our last full day in Hawaii. There are so many things we have not done that we would have liked to do but most days have been about as full as we could cope with. I am very glad we have nothing planned for this morning. This afternoon about 3 pm we catch another tour bus and go out to Paradise Cove for a Luau and show.

The days have flown by here in Honolulu and I’ve either been too tired to write them up or we had no internet connection so I’m catching up with a bunch of posts now. I can only get on the internet in the lobby or pay $10 per day for it in our room.

Our last day on Hawaii Island, Big Island was a mixture of sadness and utter pleasure.

Hawaiian time Saturday, 6th April
We were packed and ready with a little time to chat with our hostess. John was surprised that all our shopping fitted easily into our existing luggage. I did separate out books and put them in a sturdy carry-on bag as they would have put us over-weight for the inter-island flight. Our allowance was 50 pounds/27kg each or a big penalty for being overweight.

Looking toward The Place of Refuge from Two Step Beach and Plumeria flowers, Hawaiian name, or Frangipani, as we know them. The perfume is popular, the trees are everywhere and the beautiful flowers are used in all kinds of decoration including leis. For a while I was confused by the Hawaiian name, not recognising these flowers for the treasure they are.

We had time for one last look and short walk around The Refuge Place and enjoyed watching the swimmers, snorkellers canoeists and children at Two Step although it wasn’t until we were chatting with the barman at our hotel In Honolulu, that we realised we had been at the beach which had been recommended to us many, many times. The King’s landing place is one end and we watched the canoeists carefully because this was a calm day and the entrance looked very tricky with a dogleg channel through the lava rocks. Not something you would want to do if there was a wind or the waves were much bigger.

We stayed there until we felt it was time for brunch at Mihala’s, a small restaurant run by a mother and her two daughters. I took some photos of the unusual sand art on the walls.
 These were given to them by a local artist who has since died so they are unique. I don’t remember what we ate but the food was quite good and it was nice to have a leisurely meal in such pleasant surroundings.

Art in Mihala’s Restaurant. The sand art was unusual in that the picture was built up in layers so had a 3 dimensional effect. The bird of paradise flower was all made from metal, beautifully crafted and balanced in the hanging ring.

MARINA AND HARBOUR FOR THE KONA AREA. The entrance is narrow but there was enough room for hundreds of expensive boats

We set the GPS for a beach near the airport and found ourselves driving along Ali’i Drive again past Magic White Sands Beach, through the shopping and restaurant mile and past the pier. I think White Sand Beach is called magic because there are very few beaches with white sand on Big Island but also because in stormy seas the sand is washed out leaving the bare rocky shoreline, only to drift back with the currents when the sea calms once more. This is typical of beaches in the area.

It is only  9 or 10 miles from the pier to the airport and we had a couple of hours to spare so we made our first stop at a sheltered harbour where there is a huge marina. It was hot but I enjoyed a few minutes sitting on the rocks cooled by the sea breeze. Our next stop was the Kaloko-Honokohau National Park and John got our National Park Passport book stamped along with directions to getting to the beach with turtles.

 Funny. In spite of reading and reading the guide book and listening to people we found ourselves back at the marina but on the opposite side of the sheltered harbour. A 5 minute walk took us to a lovely white sandy beach and there was our first turtle in the wild. He/she was a beauty, large and sleeping in the sun with a gentle wave coming up around his/her tail every now and then. There are many warnings to keep 20 feet/7 metres away so as not to disturb them. We continued to walk along the beach  and saw a couple of others swimming around in the water.

It was terribly hot. This was one of the sunniest days we had on Big Island. The sky was bright blue and there was no escape from the bright sun in the middle of the day. My nose got a little red before it was time to go to the airport. What a magical finale to our time on Big Island. There were not many people on this beach and I would have spent a lot more time here if we had found it sooner.

There was some kind of mix-up over our flight and we nearly missed the one they put us on. John was being alert to the messages over the loud speakers, which were almost impossible to understand. It seemed that our flight was not going to happen and they were putting us on another one but the message was confused. We ended up second to last on the plane, in the very back seat with no window. I was glad we had an extra fast flight, chopping 5 or even 10 minutes off the normal time of 40 minutes, arriving only a few minutes later than our original time.

We were met in Honolulu by a Greeter with fresh flower leis and instructions for our free breakfast the following morning. It was good to arrive at our hotel and the shuttle driver gave us a few tips only friendly locals can do. Once checked in we freshened up and went to the Steak House adjacent to the hotel and feasted on ribs for John and coconut crusted chicken for me, then it was early to bed.


  1. Cant believe you guys are back already, what a wonderful memory for your 50th wedding anniversary :)

  2. How lucky to see a turtle in the wild. Great picture. Glad you had such a wonderful trip and made it safely home.

  3. Even though you are "back" now, I'm glad you decided to continue with the photo journal. These are lovely to see... and yes, how fun to come across the sleepy turtle. The art in that restaurant was unique!


I love to hear from you