|Subject: Hawaii Notes - Oahu|
HONOLULU Waikiki Beach Marriott Hotel (where we were treated to a surprise beachfront upgrade, courtesy of David and Anita - Limo/Cab about $35 -- Airport shuttle $16pp...or try Hawaii Super Transit (flyer passed out on the street) which says $6pp..1-877-247-8737.
This is a (too) busy, but beautiful, beach area along a commercial avenue ...a park along the beach holds evening events ... but the myriad of shops/restaurants/hotels, tho convenient, make it a very bustling atmosphere! Try Cheeseburgers in Paradise for a reasonable and delicious meal.
Attended The Don Ho Show at Beachcomber ...more nostalgic since I saw him 28 years ago! Tiny Bubbles is still going.
Local Bus Service is great! We took a 4 hour island tour (on and off w/ 1 transfer within 2 hours) for $2-4..first stopped at Dole Plantation (buy: dried pineapple, try: pineapple ice cream) and lunched at the buffet (see note on Turtle Bay for lunch) in a separate building and shopping area located up on the grounds... check schedule for tram tour of the fields or Pineapple Garden Maze upon arrival if interested.
We then took the next bus up to the northernmost famous Turtle Bay Golf/Beach Resort where Bus #52 going up the northwest side changes to #55 before it makes the return southern trip along the northeastern coast area... (brief stop on Turtle Bay grounds for driver changes – suggest lunch here at your leisure before catching a return bus (pay another fee if you’ve used the first transfer at Dole).
You will pass Kohala Ranch and the Macadamia Nut Farm on the left ... ask the driver to drop you off here and go down to the farm and ask to tour Kuola Gardens, which is located behind the farm but not marked; recommended as a sight not to be missed since it has been the spectacular site of several tv shows and movies.
Then catch the next bus back to Honolulu with your new transfer - in other words, it is not necessary to have a car or take a scheduled tour to see these sights; it can be done on your own schedule at an unbelievably low cost!
Diamond Head Lookout was quite a hike up!! but definitely worth the view!! One unexplained and uncomfortable part, however, was reaching the top and entering thru a cave with a very small ceiling hole which you have to pull yourself thru to get out to the view...it could be a real disappointment to a heavy person who makes his way up there only not to fit thru the minisicule entrance.
The Elks Lodge has a spectacular beachside setting...we dined on the torchlit patio and danced to the Little Big Band; membership is required.
We opted not to visit the Arizona Memorial (I had done so previously) and time prevented a tour of Shangri La (Spanish inspired home of tobacco heiress Doris Duke reservations required 866-385-3849) or the Bishop Museum (history of Hawaii).
Our three nights in Honolulu went by quickly and we picked up an Avis car right in our Marriott hotel before we headed to the east side of the island, Kailau for the next three nights.
KAILUA ... Vera Trapp’s Guesthouse with pool (808-261-5497) was a short block from the most beautiful white sand one and a half mile beach!
This quiet side of the island has a small downtown area with a Macy's and Long's Drugstore - Assagio for delicious Italian food,AgneS' Portuguese Bakery for the famed Malasada pastry; we were treated to a delightful, authentic chinese meal at Kailua Chop Suey.
Aloha! Dom & Lucille Gioello IN West Hartford,Ct