Author Topic: Ten days in paradise: Ten year anniversary trip to Maui, Kauai and Pearl Harbor  (Read 12506 times)

Offline Shua

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Monday

So originally Monday we had planned to go see Waimea Canyon. But (and you might be noticing a pattern by now) we were exhausted from the day before. We had already seen Waimea canyon from the air on Friday, so we decided to have a relaxing day for our last full day in Kauai. That meant pool, spa and Poipu Beach.

The spa has a separate men's and women's area with a dry and wet sauna as well as a Jacuzzi and rain-showers. There is a main area with a lap pool and 2 jacuzzis.



We hung out by the pools and spa for a few hours and then decided to go to Poipu beach.

Poipu beach is a few minute drive away from the Grand Hyatt. We passed by this sign on the way in.



So we were hoping that we would be able to see the Hawaiian seals. Luckily, there were two lounging on the beach!



They swam up at 6AM and the lifeguard roped off the area so no one would bother them.



Snorkeling here was great with a calm surf and great visibility. I made sure my phone/case was working this time! Unfortunately some of the pics still came out a bit blurry.

Eel



Fish





While we had originally planned to eat pomegranate meals every night, we wanted to check out the tidepools restaurant. Tidepool has a kosher menu through Ohau Kosher. As we still had two pomegranate meals left we only ordered appetizers and desserts.

Tidepools is really cool with the restaurant being situated on top of the pools of fish. There is even a swan!





We ordered the knish and minestrone soup. Both were very good. Desserts were brownies and cake. I would skip those. Everything came double wrapped and they gave us plastic utensils to eat with. While I'm glad I got our meals through pomegranate it was cool to check out the restaurant. I would definitely recommend eating at least one meal here or at least order appetizers just to enjoy the great ambiance.

Offline Shua

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Tuesday

Was going through my computer files and realized that I forgot to post the last day of our vacation; Pearl Harbor.

So, without further ado…

Unfortunately, this was our last day in Hawaii. As our flight from HNL to jfk was at 3 pm we decided to go see pearl Harbor memorial before we left.

The pearl Harbor memorial sells their tickets online and in person. It's absolutely imperative that you reserve in advance because the sell out almost immediately. I can't tell you how many people we saw that day that were trying to get tickets to the USS Arizona memorial that were turned away. Online they release an extremely limited number of tickets 2 months beforehand and the day beforehand. The release it 7AM Hawaiian time. So 2 months before I planned on going (at that point I don't think I even booked tickets yet, but I wanted to reserve just in case) I was waiting at 1pm Est time. While I snagged 2 tickets it was completely sold out by 1:03. They release a much greater number of tickets in person at 7AM for that day of you could reserve online.

Since pearl Harbor memorial is only a 10 minute drive from the airport I reserved a 12PM tour. The tour takes an hour and 15 minutes so it seemed like it was enough time to get back to the gate at 3pm. As our luggage was being checked through from LIH to JFK we would only have to worry about our carry-ons.

Pearl Harbor is an active naval base so they do not allow you to bring any bags. They have a storage room where they will hold your bags for $4 a bag.

We had a 10:10 flight from LIH TO HNL. Our flight was a bit delayed but we ended up landing in HNL at 11. We were in a cab 15 minutes later. With no traffic at all, we checked in our carry-ons and got our tickets by 11:40. This gave us some time to walk around and pearl Harbor base.

The tour started exactly at 12 with a short but very informative video portraying the events before, during and after pearl Harbor. Then the entire group boarded a boat to take us to the USS Arizona.



The memorial is situated on top of the sunken USS Arizona that is in middle of pearl Harbor. It is done really well. I strongly encourage everyone to try to go see it.



Gun turrets from the sunken USS Arizona



This shows how the memorial lies perpendicular to the sunken ship



5 quarts of oil that are being leaked daily. Supposedly there are 500,000 gallons still in the ship!



Wall of names of soldiers who died that day



Anchor of the USS memorial




We quickly got our luggage and hailed a cab that was waiting outside the harbor. We were through security (thank you TSA pre check!) and in the lounge at 1:40. With our flight not scheduled to leave till 3PM we had plenty of time to spare.

All in all Hawaii was an amazing vacation with a perfect mix of relaxing and activities that would satisfy everyone

Hope this trip report was helpful as I really got a lot of tips from other users who posted TRs and though I would give back a bit (as well as saving my trip for my own future reference!)