Sunday, February 14, 2016

Dreaming of . . . Hawaii

As I've mentioned (many times) before, I've vacationed in Hawaii twice and it remains on my list of top vacation destinations.   Those vacations were so profoundly relaxing and magical, and a different experience from my trips to the Caribbean (Bahamas and Turks & Caicos.)  It's almost difficult to describe the sights, sounds and spirits which encompass Hawaii, making it a top vacation spot.

A trip to Hawaii had been on my bucket list and a place I expected to travel to when I was older.  In 2000, when my friend, Carrie, and I discovered that one of our favorite bands, Tonic, was part of Maui Madness, a week of music in Maui arranged by a radio station out of Texas, and the cost was less than $1,000 per person (airfare, hotel and rental car), we both jumped at the opportunity, knowing that it could be our only chance to travel to Hawaii.  Hey, you never know what life's going to throw your way.  We were both single, approaching our late twenties and had disposal income.  At the time, roundtrip airfare from Boston to Hawaii could cost you $1,000 so this was a deal we had to take advantage of.


(Only film cameras back then.)


Four years later, Rich and I very easily decided to honeymoon in Hawaii.  We spent almost two weeks there, splitting our time between Maui and Hawaii, the Big Island.  Rich fell in love with Hawaii as I had and we vowed to return for our five year anniversary.


(Still working with the film.  I know, so old.)



(The best part of this photo, aside from the turtle, is my shoe selection.  I cannot remember if I bought a new pair or if those are the same exact sneakers I wore to Maui in 2000.  In fact, I think I may still have them in my spare sneaker basket.)


Little did we know that we would be celebrating five years of marriage with two year old triplets.  Needless to say, our return to Hawaii did not happen and we've been planning/discussing (in other words, I keep bringing it up) a vacation there for many years now.  With the girls older, travel is much easier.  They are curious by nature and love exploring.

Here's what the weather looked like this morning.

Ack!  We are in the middle of an arctic blast and I'm so thankful that this happened over the weekend when I don't have to commute to the office.  That was the temperature at eight o'clock this morning.  Our big trip for 2016 is Walt Disney World in Orlando.  Will 2017 be the year for Hawaii?

Potential Itinerary:  While I would like to return to Maui, I think exploring another island is the way to go right now.  And the other island I have in mind is Oahu.  I know people complain about the crowds and city of Honolulu but our entire vacation would not be centered around Honolulu.  I know some people stay elsewhere on the island and then travel to Honolulu for day trips.  Ideally, I would like to stay on Waikiki Beach for three or so nights and explore that area before moving to another hotel on the island.

I may appear to be a "Disney person" because we've been to Walt Disney World in Florida several times but I can assure you that I am not.  (Well, maybe I am and I just don't know it.)  The girls really enjoy that vacation and we've continued to travel there just because.  There are many more places in the United States I would like to visit and the girls have expressed an interest in several different trips, including Hawaii.  I don't know if it's subliminal advertising or what but I would love to stay at Aulani.  The kids would love to stay at Aulani.  Is there anyone who wouldn't want to stay at Aulani?

I've been checking out prices and deals, and based upon my research and calculations, renting DVC (Disney Vacation Club) points is a money saver.  It's still an expensive vacation despite the savings but all I know is that, indulgent or not, I want to be there.  Unfortunately, it takes a really long time to travel from Boston to Hawaii.  You are looking at least twelve hours of travel time and then throw in a six hour time difference.  But I suppose after driving straight through with no overnight stops from Orlando to Boston, this would be easy.


Kelly and Gumbie said...

We traveled to Hawaii this summer to celebrate our 10th anniversary with our 5 year old twins. We spent a week at Aulani and it was AMAZING and worth every penny. Our kids LOVED the kids club there and begged to go there so my husband and I got to spend actual relaxing time together enjoying each other. Our kids were asking to go back the week we came home. We also planned our trip with a two day stop over at Disneyland since we were flying that way anyway - plus it helped a little with adjusting to the time change.

Theresa said...

Maui is my favorite, and probably my favorite place in the world. Weve done all 4 main islands. If you go the Oahu & Maui route, go to Oahu first. We did Maui and then Oahu on one trip and Oahu totally wiped out the relaxing feel from Maui. Also, sunsets on Halekala on Maui are suppose to be awesome (as well as the sunrise, but if your several days into a trip, it may be hard to wake up early enough, especially depending on where you are staying). We attempted the sunset but my daughter got car sick. I love Hawaii. I hope you make it!!

Sarah said...

Hawaii is our favorite too! We went for our honeymoon in 2005 and then before kids in 2008. We are planning to go back in 2020 for our 40th birthdays/15th anniversary.

We did Maui and Oahu the first time, and then Big Island, Kauai, and Maui then second. I love them all!

Bargerboys said...

I went to Hawaii numerous times with my parents when I was younger. Then I honeymooned there in 2001. And have not been back since :( My 8-year old daughter is begging us to go so we will get there...eventually! I love the town of Makawao. It is in upcountry Maui and is just such a quiet place. I plan on retiring there :) But Oahu is amazing, too. We stayed at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. Pearl Harbor, the Honolulu Zoo and aquarium, hiking Diamond Head, snorkeling at Hanauma Bay. Now you have me wanting to plan a trip!

MandyE (Twin Trials and Triumphs) said...

We have never been to Hawaii, but we've always said we'll go on our 20-year anniversary. The girls will be 10, so the timing feels like it will be good for everyone. It's a bit overwhelming to think about planning, though! Still, I cannot wait!

Colleen said...

I lived in Hawaii for a few years; we lived on Oahu but spent time on Kauai and Big Island as well. If you're planning to stay at Aulani, that's awesome (our friends with kids loved it there), but just keep in mind that it's pretty removed from other activities. If you wanted to go to the zoo or Diamond Head, you would definitely need a rental car. But if you're fine staying at the resort during your time there, then you're good to go. It is gorgeous over on that side of the island, and the lagoons are so much fun to snorkel in.