Monday, June 12, 2017

Quick Trip Around Oahu.

I'm sharing a few pictures from my all day tour around the island.  I haven't lived on Oahu for many years so I thought it would be nice to take a guided tour around the island to see what has changed.

I got picked up in Waikiki by a huge Roberts of Hawaii bus.  The location of my pickup is on a small side street that can get extremely congested.  

The bus drove us by Diamond Head, past Kahala with some of the most expensive land before heading out to Hawaii Kai.  One of our first stops was at Hanama Bay.

When I grew up there, we'd pop over to swim in the beautifully calm waters but in the last 20 years, the state has taken over, started charging a fee, and monitors the number of people who are there. They are known to close down the parking lot when they feel there are enough people.  For most tours, you are told the stop is space available.    We got to go in.  As you can see it is absolutely beaurtiful.
 After wards, we headed towards the Blowhole.  Unfortunately, the surf wasn't strong enough to send water through the hole.  Occasionally, we'd see a mist flow out but no stream of water. 

This picture was taken off to the side. According to the tour guide, this is where the beach seen in "From here to eternity" was filmed.  Its a beautiful little cove.  Its also a steep climb down but that does not stop people. 

After the driver managed to get everyone on the bus, we hit the road again.  The next stop was at the top of the Pali where the last battle was fought in which Kamehameha united all the islands under one government.   The wind seems to always blow every time I go up there.

The story from when I was young, went this way:  Some days the wind is so strong that it will blow a person who jumps off the cliff, back up.  I don't know how true it is.  I do know you can see the original road from before the current road.  It comes in to the right of where I took the picture.

The original road hugged the side of the mountain, twisting and turning all the way up.  I heard the original cars did not have a gas pump so they had to go up the hill backwards or they wouldn't get enough gas.  In addition, there is a small seat where people waited for the bus long time ago.

 This is a beautiful picture of one of the buildings on the grounds of the Valley of the Temples, a cemetary where  Christians or Buddhists are buried. It is a beautiful site filled with green, trees, and chapels.  The guide explained how family members often put the deceased person's favorite food or drink on the graves.

People used to put bottles of alcohol but the cemetery changed its policy when young people would come onto the property to steel the bottles.

In recent years they've added a pet cemetery just outside of the regular one.

This is China Man's Hat, named for its look.  According to the tour guide, the small piece of land to the left is where the Minnow from Giligans Island crash in the opening.  Again, I don't know how true that is but it is quite possible.

The day was great so we were able to see Maui across the water.  The North Shore has the best waves for surfing during the winter, while the other side is better in the summer.
 We stopped through Koaloa Ranch for a quick tour and lunch.  Koaloa Ranch is where many of the Jurrasic movies have been filmed and they say another one is in the works there. 

The ranch has been around since the mid 1850's a lot smaller but over time has acquired additional land.  At one point, they tried running a sugar mill but it only lasted 8 years.  Otherwise, they've been raising cattle or being used for filming. 

To the left is one of the original bunkers form World War II. The government took over the ranch for a runway, complete with bunkers guarding it.  This only lasted a couple of years before it was returned to its owners.

The bunker to the right was built as a movie set for one of the World War II movies. It might have been Pearl Harbor with Ben Affleck.  The ranch turned the set into a museum.  The guide said it does not go back very far.

From there, we backtracked about a mile to take advantage of the macadamia nut store.  They had the usual flavors in addition to some unique flavors.  I love the cinnamon sugar ones.  The other ones are the salted caramel but I didn't even try the Kona coffee ones because I do not like coffee flavor.

They gave out free coffee for those who drank it.  I grabbed the flavors I wanted, checked out and was outside before most of the others finished.  As you can tell it is a regular stop.

The final stop was at the Dole Pineapple plantation.  It has a small train for people to ride, a maze where one can get lost and a small miniature  golf course.

I had to get a pineapple whip topped with fresh pineapple bits. I loved the tangy smooth taste of this concoction.  It is so good.  I didn't have time to get any fresh squeezed juice but I know where I can get some.  There is a small Dole outlet near the hotel.....LOL.

It was getting late, so we headed back to town.  I arrived back at my starting point in time to visit the farmers market held at the Hyatt.  I found the small apple bananas I prefer and mango sticky rice.  I'll share a picture of that later.

Hope you enjoy this peak of Oahu.  I'd love to hear from you.  Have a good day.

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