Friday, February 24, 2017

Hawaii photos- Part 2

February 23:  I've received a few emails from people wondering if I survived the Great Aloha Run. 8.15 mostly flat miles at sea level?  Of course!  Naturally, things have been a little lot achy this week (my piriformus muscles and IT bands were screaming until today) but it hasn't slowed us down a bit. And G finished in about the middle of the pack (all that early morning off-the-ship jogging really paid off). I was so proud of him!. We still managed to walk another 5 miles or so around Waikiki later that day so, in the end it was a 26000 step day. Go us!

We have been having the most incredible time here. We've talked about having an extended stay in Hawaii for years and didn't know how it would compare to cruising for us. Well, it's been wonderful. And now we know. ;-) 

I have decided to break my Hawaii photos into two separate blog posts. The WiFi in our condo does not have the lightning fast speed we enjoy at home (but compared to a ship, it's heaven) and that first photo post was getting slow to download. If you're tired of sunsets, look away now. I've taken hundreds of photos and still get excited by them. Our sunsets, whether viewed from a rooftop restaurant or beach bar or right from the dining table in our condo, have been spectacular. 

We started the evening today with drinks on the beach, decided that the sunset was going to be a bust, and walked back to our condo. We were oh so wrong; when we got there, this is what we saw. It reminded me a great deal of the sunset we viewed from the Intercontinental Tahiti over two years just kept getting better and better for about 30 minutes. 




February 22:  We spent the afternoon walking along Waikiki and the adjacent beaches, checking out some properties for future stays. 

A more recent sculpture addition 

Happy hour at Tiki's Bar and Gril atop the Aston Waikiki Beach Hotel
(this is our favorite happy hour- $5 mai tais!)

These sunset photos were taken with my iPhone instead of my Nikon Coolpix camera. 
We hadn't planned on being gone all afternoon and being away from home at sunset. 



February 21:  

February 20:  Taken from the Hale Koa. As soon as the sunset, we raced back to our condo and were asleep in minutes, having gotten up at 4:45am for the Great Aloha Race and walking over 13 miles that day. 


February 19:
Taken from our condo before an early bedtime

NCL's Pride of America sailed just after sunset
January 18:  Taken from the Hale Koa just before Friday night fireworks at the Hilton Hawaiian Village next door

We went early for Mongolian BBQ for dinner 

The sky was so golden just before sunset





February 17:  Dinner at Sarento's atop the 36-story Ilikai


Sunday, February 19, 2017

Hawaii photos - Part 1

February 19:  The alarm is set for 4:45am tomorrow...
From the Aloha Tower to the Aloha (Pro Bowl) Stadium 
8.15 miles - 23000 participants
Pray for us! ;-)

February 15:  Today was a blissfully lazier day. It rained a bit early this morning and for the first time the air felt muggy until mid-afternoon or so. We took advantage of the less than perfect weather to shop for groceries and rest. 


We loved the reflection of the sky after sunset on the water of the marina across the street

February 14:  We'd already walked along the beach from the west end of Waikiki to the east end and Kapiolani Park, so we took a bus to that point and then walked along Diamond Head Rd. along the coast from one end to the other. Our goal was to find the Diamond Head lighthouse that we had seen from our sunset sail around Diamond Head last year while we were on the Pacific Princess. We did find it, and Diamond Head Beach with its kite surfers and longboard surfers. 


Two of the several beach parks along the way

It wouldn't be a Pacific island without roosters and hens!

The Diamond Head lighthouse (1917) with its original lens

We took a path down to the beach at the base of the lighthouse for a different view. 

In case you hadn't noticed, the sunsets have been spectacular, and we chose a condo with a view
just for the purpose of seeing them even when we're not on the beach. 

February 13:  We set out in an Ewa (pronounced eva with a short 'e'), or westerly direction from our condo to walk along the beaches that lie west of Waikiki. There are some beautiful beach parks all along Ala Moana Boulevard that are actually much nicer than Waikiki. 

We have a condo on a high floor in one of those high-rises. 

Ala Moana Beach Park

Every night we hear this folkloric show taking place next door at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. 

The lights come on at sunset along Ala Moana Boulevard.  

February 12:  We were up early to watch the arrival of the Star Princess from our condo. 


One of the prettiest sunsets we've seen


I wanted to take a photo of the Star Princess sailaway, but though it was scheduled to leave at 11pm, it didn't. I finally gave up around 11:30pm. 

February 11:  We awoke to a heavy rain, which thankfully stopped by mid afternoon. We (and every other tourist on the island) decided to spend the morning at the Ala Moana Mall, forgetting that it is the largest open air mall in the country.

 The first level was fine but the upper two levels required some careful navigating. 

 Still, the weather that cleared by 2pm and  allowed us to have another beautiful sunset. 

February 10:  We had dinner overlooking the beach at the Hale Koa (Mongolian BBQ) and stayed for sunset and the Friday night fireworks show at the Hilton Hawaiian Village next door. 


As far as fireworks photos go, these are pretty horrendous (no tripod), but I found them appealing in a 
jelly fish-electric current-microscope slide sort of way. 




February 9: The Grand Princess was in Honolulu today and we went down to the Aloha Tower to see it. We thought we might see a crew member or officer we knew. We didn't; however, we did see Billie and her husband Martin with whom we've done several Pacific Princess cruises, including the transatlantic last December. And a blog reader recognized me, which was a total surprise. It was fun!


The TV series Hawaii Five-0 has been filming all around us for the past three days (they're working on Season 7, episode 20). Three days ago they were filming from the roof of the Ilikai Marina just across the street. Yesterday two helicopters hovered overhead for several hours filming. And today the marina area was closed to through traffic because they were filming. There's always something happening around here!


Production trailers

Tonight we walked just a couple of minutes to the area behind the Ala Wai Yacht Harbor to watch sunset. It was beautiful, and we could also enjoy the surfers and outrigger canoeists taking advantage of the last few minutes of daylight. These pics are for those digging out from the snow that's hit New England. I hope they warm you up a little!






February 7:  I know I said I wouldn't be blogging while in Hawaii but I will post (very) occasional photos just to send you some tropical cheer. We are having the best time and love not having any schedule at all (and eating our meals in swimwear or shorts and Ts). 

Last night's sunset. We can see it from our condo too, but decided to
take another walk along the beach after dinner to watch it from there and
listen to the live island music along the way. 



February 5:
This morning's beach walk. Life is good. :-)

January 31:  We've arrived in Honolulu!
Life is good!  :-)

Sidebar...look where the Pacific Princess is right now!  Weep!! It's the first port stop for the ship since it left Los Angeles 8 days ago. It's also the first time the Pacific Princess has been in Bora Bora since we were on the ship in December 2015. It is there; we are not. There's something very wrong about that!