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Messages - Shua

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My wife and I have been looking forward to going away for a few days for our 10 year anniversary. We needed a place where we could a) relax, b) have enough activities so we wouldn't get bored and c) not have zika. Unfortunately, that last criteria knocked out a lot of close options. Hawaii was always somewhere that I was really interested in but I knew that we would need to spend more time there than just a few days. (I'm not flying 10+ hours to go to one island for 4 days). I calculated that we would need a minimum of 8 days with 10 being ideal. After working out my both my work schedule and babysitting (huge shout out to my mother in law), we were able to get away for 10 days! Hawaii here we come!

Well now which of the islands would we go to? We would really only have time for 2. Besides for Pearl Harbor, Ohau didn't really seem to have anything else to offer. So that quickly whittled it down to 3 islands. After reading up online, it seemed like the big island had the most adventures/activities. If we would want to include relaxing we wouldn't be able to do everything the big island has to offer in the time period we were there. So we settled on Maui and Kauai. We weighed the pros and cons for a while on which island we should go to first and which island we should stay for shabbos. We ultimately decided on going to Maui and then Kauai. Reason being is that we a) would be getting a suite at the Grand Hyatt in Kauai (thanks @bades) which we wanted/needed for shabbos and b) because of the Grand Hyatt new kosher food restrictions we had to stay at Kauai last. After discussing with my wife, she said it would be blasphemous to go all the way to Hawaii and not see Pearl Harbor. I realized that instead of having a short stop over in HNL while flying from Kauai to NYC, I'll just expand the stop over so I'll have enough time to visit the USS Arizona memorial.

For food we ordered meals from pomegranate and bought a toaster oven for $18 in the Walmart in Maui. We were able to stuff in two meals in to it, but as there was no airflow in between the meals, we had to switch it out half way so it still took about 40 minutes to warm up the meals.

I don't remember what nights we ate what so I will just list what we liked and disliked overall.

Great: Schwarma chicken, Sesame chicken, Szechuan beef, Eggplant parm, Mushroom rice, Popcorn cauliflower, Israeli couscous, Portabella mushrooms
Very good: Brisket in gravy, Stuffed cabbage, Spare ribs, Penne Ala vodka, Eggplant rollatini, Cheese blitzes, Mashed potatoes, Garlic broccoli
Ok: Corned beef (very dry), Hot poppers (no sauce)
Bad: General tzo chicken (had a weird taste to it)

We also brought a sandwich maker, bread, cheese and a few dried Salami as well.

For a car, I rented through Costco and got a convertible for Maui. I was supposed to get an Altima in Kauai but got upgraded to a convertible as well.

Amazon & Walmart Deals / Re: HOT! Echo Dot (2nd Generation) - free
« on: August 19, 2017, 10:30:59 PM »
I got mine. Did 1 day shipping. Which is always free for me as long it's something sold by Amazon and above $35. This qualified because the item was above $35, the audible promotion knocked it down to $0

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Next Vacation - Ideas
« on: August 18, 2017, 11:54:16 AM »
we went home , ate supper, and then went back for the light show.
While that is definitely an option, just know that Magic Kingdom takes a long time to enter and leave the park. You have to park in a lot then take a tram or boat to the entrance. I would give a minimum of a half hour each way. So unless you are staying at a Disney resort (which would be closer to get to) you would need at least 2 hours but probably 3 to leave the park,  go to house/hotel, eat and get back into the park. If you are only going for one day you might not want to give up 3 hours of Disney. Depends on the family

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Next Vacation - Ideas
« on: August 18, 2017, 11:02:06 AM »

You can always change it in the park if you see that one of them had a small line.
Yes, get the app which allows you to charge fastpass, add on more fastpass after you used up 3, and shows you the wait times on rides

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Next Vacation - Ideas
« on: August 18, 2017, 09:24:00 AM »
Planning on hopping down to Orlando chol hamoed. Fly out Sunday morning. Spend Monday at magic kingdom. Fly out Tuesday evening. Anything I should be thinking about/knowing/doing while planning? I'm doing flight/hotel on points and paying full price for Disney out of pocket. Any insight? (We're 2 adults and a 6 yr old)

You can buy your tickets through undercovertourist (make it a little cheaper) or buy Disney gift cards at Staples (5x ink)

Make sure you set up fastpass before you go. Do some research online which rides you want to do beforehand (and which rides are really popular that require fastpass). You can  make a fastpass reservation 30 days before you go (60 if you are staying in a resort)

It's a long tiring day. Bring a carriage, plenty of food, but try to stay for the shows at the end. The light show on the castle as well as the fireworks are great

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Maui Master Thread
« on: August 10, 2017, 10:42:16 PM »
can someone who stayed at the Marriott Wailea beach resort please give a review

how does it compare to the andez? to the waldorf? and to the other hotels


Just stayed at the Marriott. Really enjoyed. There are 3 main pool areas. The adult infinity pool in middle overlooking the ocean, the kids area with waterfalls, sprinklers and 2 water slides (which they claim are the highest in Maui) and the regular infinity pool with hot tub attached. There is also a regular (lap?) pool and a dive pool where they offer free scuba diving lessons. The adult infinity pool is fantastic with unobstructed views of the ocean (it seemed closer to the water than other hotels in Wailea) but it is a drop cold at night.

Customer service was fantastic with everyone really accommodating. They kept my box of pomegranate meals in their freezer and gladly gave me my meals whenever I asked.

We got upgraded to an ocean view room which was a regular room (nice but nothing over the top) but had a great balcony with views of the adult infinity pool and ocean.

There was great snorkeling directly in front of the hotel where I saw many sea turtles both in the morning and afternoon. I snorkeled from Wailea beach until ulua Beach and saw tons of fish and coral. Viability was better in the morning

The hotel doesn't have a beach directly in front of the hotel, some might view that as a negative but we actually liked it as you had unobstructed views of the ocean from the pool. Wailea beach is a 3 minute walk from the hotel where they will set up a beach chair for you.

There is a $30 resort fee as well as a $25 self parking fee or a $35 valet fee.

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Maui Master Thread
« on: August 09, 2017, 01:01:25 PM »
Can see my TR for what I did and what I skipped.

@Dan @Shua I wrote about that bridge being closed in my TR ^. But there were signs at the church making it seem like you can't go further even by foot, so we turned back. Oh well. Also didn't realize there's a beach there. I thought just a pond/pool.

Sorry, it's not a beach, just the water edge like ke'eane coast. Really great views. Will modify my original report.

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Maui Master Thread
« on: August 09, 2017, 11:39:22 AM »
Yup, pretty much all that.
Can hike to 3 bears falls also, just the first step is a doozy.

I drove across that bridge a few times, is it really closed now?

Too bad about the 7 pools, was fun to wade in.

We didn't hike to 3 bears just pulled over by the no parking signs and took pics. Wasn't in the mood of walking down the road, there was a ton of people down by the falls and hike down seemed a bit steep.

According to the book they closed the bridge in 2015. For good reason! That bridge looks like it's going to fall down any moment. I can't imagine driving over it.

Was a bit annoyed about the seven sacred pools. Luckily the $25 entry fee also covers the crater

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Maui Master Thread
« on: August 09, 2017, 11:30:25 AM »

They have a store in the Wailea shops (and in the other islands as well). Certified under Go kosher Hawaii which is affiliated with Chabad of Hawaii. Chalav Stam

Really good ice cream. Got the try 5 half scoops for $9 (make sure they put it in a a cup). Salted caramel was fantastic

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Maui Master Thread
« on: August 09, 2017, 11:27:54 AM »
Any specific stops recommended? Going tomorrow.

Went yesterday. First, get the Maui revealed app. Really is a life saver in regards to where you are on the map. Service is really spotty so Google maps is out. Relaying on mile markers isn't great either because if you turn off the road to visit the ke'eane coast or the nahiku road then your mile markers are going to be off.

Our favorite place was Wailua Ike falls. (Just make sure you get a permit  ;)) A short hike to a huge falls and then if you keep going a smaller falls on top with a great pool to swim in, even has a rock to jump off of.

Nahiku road was really great drive all the way to the end, park in front to the church and walk to the water with great views. There is also a really nice pool on the way down. Very few people did the drive down (there is a sign that says bridge closed at the beginning so maybe that discourages people? The old wooden bridge is closed, that's why you have to park by the church and walk)

Black sand beach also really cool, check out the cave to the right of the beach.

Biggest disappointment. Seven sacred pools. A) can't swim in them. B) couldn't get too close because closed due to high surf C) At the end of a long day didn't have the energy to do the long hike

Make sure you leave plenty of time while it's still light to do the back road. While absolutely beautiful it's really narrow on the edge of a cliff for large portions of the drive. I wouldn't want to do that in the dark

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Maui Master Thread
« on: July 28, 2017, 08:09:36 AM »
I'm going to be doing the western Maui loop one day. Im coming from Wailea and plan on doing the loop clockwise. I want to do the loop clockwise as I will probably go to Haleakala for sunset so the end of the loop lets you off closer to Haleakala. (Not that it makes a huge time difference to do it counterclockwise but just seems to make sense to do it clockwise).

Im definitely going to check out the two-tiered pools, the acid warzone hike/blow hole and olivine pools. Will also probably stop by ka'anapli and check out the black rock and maybe do some snorkeling. Anything else that Im missing? Is anything to do in Lahaina that its worth stopping by? (Will probably not have time to go see W and A). Is the huge banyan tree just a tree?

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Kauai, HI Master Thread
« on: July 28, 2017, 01:19:35 AM »
Thanks, yea going to stick with the chopper.

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Kauai, HI Master Thread
« on: July 27, 2017, 10:04:49 PM »
When are you going?  Winter, Waialeale Crater is wow!  Don't know if I would bother with helicopter in summer.  Na Pali cruise is better in summer.  Too turbulent in winter.

Going in a few weeks. Everyone who I ever spoke to said helicopter ride is amazing, not to be missed. You would say cruise over heli?

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Kauai, HI Master Thread
« on: July 27, 2017, 09:21:58 PM »
If Im going to be doing the helicopter tour as well as hike the kalalau trail is there any point in doing a Na Pali cruise? Or is that overkill.

Destination Guides And Trip Planning / Re: Kauai, HI Master Thread
« on: July 27, 2017, 06:02:59 PM »
Polihale has by far the nicest sunset on the island.

Might do that the day I go to Waimea canyon. I would like to go to Waimea in the morning (before the clouds come in) so if I decide to do a hike will stick around and go to Polihale for sunset

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