Thursday, February 16, 2017

Hawaii!!!

Last week Karl and I got to spent some time together on beautiful Hawaii.  We spent the first portion of the trip in Oahu and the second on Maui.
OAHU
Karl's work paid for us to stay at the Turtle Bay Resort on Oahu.  It was beautiful and we had a lot of fun.  We arrived fairly early on Thursday and decided to stop to get a Pinapple Dole Whip at the Dole Plantation, check out some of the scenery, and a local beach before heading to the hotel.

Pineapple Bushes


These trees at the Dole Plantation were so neat.  They literally looked like they step out of a water color painting.  I loved all the different colors on the bark.



View from our hotel




 Friday morning we thought it would be fun to do a little snorkeling, walk the beaches, and explore the resort.






 While walking we got to see this sea turtle swimming next to the rock cliffs





That afternoon we met with the Coca-Cola finance department for a stand-up paddle board excursion/lesson.This was one of our favorite activities.  Sea turtles were everywhere while paddle boarding.  They would be swimming under and around us.  The water was so clear you could see the the bottom of the ocean floor.




 After, the guide took us on a little hike where these cool looking trees were.



That night we had the Coca-Cola welcome dinner.  They presented everyone with floral leas.


Saturday we went and explored Kualoa Ranch.  This is the site location where many films were produced such as Jurassic World, 50 First Dates, Pearl Harbor as well as many more.  The new movie Skull Island is also being filmed here.  Besides being a famous place for film producers it is also very beautiful and is home to the ancient Hawaiian chief's temple.



 We started off with a guided jungle tour.

 This was an ancient temple ground.







The picture is a bit hazy because apparently a volcano on the big island is erupting causing all the haziness. 

 The Jurassic World cage exhibit still stands.  We got to drive through it.



 The crashed helicopter for the new movie Skull Island is here, covered to keep it protected








 One of the activities we did was an ATV off-roading tour.  It was really quite disappointing.  They didn't stop once to allow me to get any pictures of the beautiful canyon we drove through and it wasn't much of an off road experience.



 After, we took a boat and checked out the shore line.


Once we were done with the Ranch activities, Karl and I decided to watch the surfers and check out the local town
We stopped and got a coconut.  One of my bucket list of items I want to do. Drink from a coconut, check.

Surfers
video


This guy just LOVES selfies

Once the coconut water was gone, Karl busted the coconut open and we got to enjoy the yummy insides. 


 On Sunday, we did the Superbowl.  Coke rented out the Turtle Bay's Resort Surfer bar.



 During half time they had a how many wings can you eat game that Karl signed up for.  He ended up taking 3rd.

 One of the best parts (I thought) was during the game you could look out the window and watch the whales jumping all over the place.

You can see the whales head popping up out of the ocean. It's a bit blurry due to the glass window.

 Once the game was over, Karl and I went and enjoyed the sunset on our last night in Oahu.

Since our flight didn't leave until later in the day on Monday, We decided to go check out the Hawaiian temple and the Polynesian Cultural Center.  




Karl was lucky enough to get this handmade warrior band.

 It was fun visiting the "different islands"




 Around noon they did this river luau where all the islands come and present a dance.








This guy was showing us how to make coconut bread in an underground oven.  
It was really good.  So I took a picture of the recipe for anyone interested in wanting to try it.



MAUI
We arrived late Monday night in Maui since our flight was a bit delayed due to a storm that had come earlier during the day.  However, on Tuesday we grabbed some boogie boards and decided to try it out.  Both of us got tossed around quite a bit by the waves as we were learning, but it was a lot of fun and we had some good laughs.



Karl riding the wave

video
When we got back to the condo we were staying at to wash up, Karl and I got a good laugh at his weird sunburn.  We are not sure how a mustached managed to appear but it did.

That afternoon we decided to explore some other beaches and came upon these sea turtles sun bathing.




On Wednesday, Karl and I booked a water rafting tour with Blue Water Rafting company where we did snorkeling, visited the lava caves, saw whales (lots of whales), dolphins, and sea turtles.  It was such a fun adventurous tour.  We were so lucky to get to go on such a beautiful calm day.  AMAZING was the only way to describe it.  
Like I said before, there were whales EVERYWHERE around us.  The humback mom's come here to have their babies.  It was so fun seeing mom and baby swimming side by side.  We even had one whale swim right underneath the raft we were on.  





Video of a mom and baby coming up side by side next to the boat
video




You can see the whale breaching up out of the water.
One of the first coves the tour took us was where a bunch of dolphins were playing.
video


 They came and checked our boat out for a little bit.

 After the dolphins they took us to the lava caves.  They had one cave that when the water would rise it would shoot out what looked like smoke.  They called it dragons breath or something like that.








video



 Because the water was so calm, which apparently isn't most days, they took the boat into this cave. 


The dark spots on the mountain are where the lava has flowed out and down to the water. 




Swimming Turtle (It's a bit long due to Karl needing to come up for air after diving down to try and swim next to it.) I'm amazed at how graceful they are. 
video

Once we were done snorkeling in this bay they took us to the backside of this island off the coast of Maui.  The guide told us that a lot of times the water is too choppy to snorkel but it was good enough that day for us to get to experience.  From above it didn't look like much as it was a ways out in the ocean and we were told it was  a straight drop down but it was one of the coolest places to snorkel.  Fish were EVERYWHERE.  I had one come check out my goggles.  It was crazy. 

All those little shadows are fish


The coolest part about this place was because we weren't far from where the whales were you can actually hear them talking under the water.  If you turn the volume up you can here the whales in this next video.  They sound like low howls.  

video



That afternoon/evening we took it easy, enjoyed walking along the beach and watching the sun go down.

These legs were trying to soak in the last bit of sun they would see for awhile.  We were heading  home the next day

 





The next morning we headed for the airport and left for home.  
Aloha Hawaii, you will be missed.