Monday, October 31, 2011

Highlights from our trip to Oahu

Yes, we went to Hawaii!!! We were in Oahu for five days and then Kauai for three days. It was everything you would expect from a tropical family vacation.

It has been over 10 years since Jean-Louis and I have been in Oahu. We lived on the Big Island of Hawaii for awhile and visited Oahu a few times. Our impression of Oahu at the time was that it was dirty and was way too busy and we had no idea why it was so popular. Waikiki was lame compared to the beautiful beaches we have been to on the Big Island and Kauai. There were beggars, prostitutes and it didn't feel safe to wander around in the city at night.

Now in our 30s with a toddler, our impression of Oahu is that it's actually a great place for a vacation. It has cleaned up quite nicely and there are so many new buildings and roads. The Waikiki area is lovely now. There's great shopping, entertainment, and I hardly saw litter on the streets. A lot has changed. We have also changed.

We stayed in Oahu for five nights, which we thought was plenty. Since I was so organized, we got to do a lot of stuff and when we left, we didn't feel like we missed out on much.

Here are the highlights from our trip:
  • We visited with a friend, who we haven't seen since our wedding.
  • Coffee & Tea has better bubble tea than in Vancouver. It's true!
  • Diamond Head State park is a long walk from Waikiki. Tristan walked all the way up and down on his own and the other hikers were impressed. That made us proud :)
  • We all enjoyed the Grand Circle Island tour. It gave us a look at the real Oahu, not just Waikiki. However, I got four nasty mosquito bites from that trip and Jean-Louis got stung my a bee on his foot.
  • Island Vintage Coffee on Waikiki rocked.
  • The Magic of Polynesia show was excellent. The dinner portion was just okay.
  • The Waikiki Aquarium was okay. The Vancouver Aquarium is way better.
  • The Ali`i Kai Catamaran dinner cruise was nice. Tristan partied really hard. It was kind of embarrassing since we normally don't dance and he had to drag us out for every song. He kind of threw a fit when we didn't let him dance out there.
  • Hit places we ate at: Padovani's Grill, Rainbow Drive In, Leonard's Bakery, Waiola's Shave Ice and Bakery
  • One of the Groupons we bought for ice cream, Hula Swirl, went out of business:( Luckily, Groupon refunds you in an event like this.
  • Surprise find: reliable wireless Internet was hard to come by. Many coffee shops didn't have WIFI or a bathroom. What the heck!
  • Everywhere I went, people thought I was a local resident since I was Asian and tanned
  • The weather was great! We only encountered a brief shower once.
  • No rain, no rainbow. Even though we weren't rained upon, we got to see two rainbows in Oahu.


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