Exploring a Bit of Hawaii with Dad


It was January 1st and we were on a plane to Kona, Hawaii!!! I had asked my dad back in June where he would like to go on a quick trip with me [#everywherealaskaflies] and he said “Hawaii, please”! Specifically, a different island than Oahu…even though he did want to visit Pearl Harbor. So, I made plans for us to spend two nights on the big island and one night in Honolulu. The only complaints were the lack of overnight parking in the city, close to our hotel, and the fact that the sun goes down around 6 o’clock [#equator]. It would just be so epic if beautiful places like this had longer days, right? 😉

Our trip started around 10:30pm on December 31st when I received a call from my dad alerting me to the fact that his flight had been canceled due to fog. So instead of sleeping that night, I hopped in the car to go pick him up and drive us both to Seattle! After waiting six months for his Father’s Day gift, I didn’t want to have to cancel this trip! But we made it! Landing in Kona to the freshest of air and bluest of skies was worth all the effort.

Highlights from the Island of Hawaii:

  • Four mile scenic drive north of Hilo [next time I’ll hike the Onomea Bay Trail]
  • Coconut Island [swimming and paddleboarding would be great here]
  • Hapuna Beach State Recreation Area [gorgeous sandy beach and sunset]
  • Watching the transition from dry to rainforest biomes as we crossed the island
  • Our AirBnb [Artistic Hobbit House] in the middle of the rainforest!!
  • Finding ready-to-eat papayas at the Keaau farmer’s market

I probably wouldn’t return to Hawaiian Volcanoes National Park…the lit lava tube was very short and there wasn’t much to see [craters? steam vents?]. But there were so many beaches and other hiking trails on the south, east, and northwest sides of the island that I would love to go explore.

My dad’s initial reactions to Honolulu were not great…he wasn’t excited about the traffic and big city vibes. We drove up the west coast of the island, past Waianae and up toward Ka’ena Point State Park, which you have to hike to. The water and cliffs are beautiful up here. It was a bit too hot for my dad to enjoy hiking, but next time it would be fun to take the trail around to Monk Seal Beach.

We enjoyed a sunset sail in Waikiki Bay with the Waikiki Sailing Company. Apparently sometimes they see dolphins and whales! The most fun spot on the boat is lying on the front mesh and getting soaked by the waves!

I know this trip was short, but we managed to enjoy several sunsets and some delicious tropical fruit! We were able to visit Pearl Harbor, eat malassadas and mango sticky rice, and get out on the water. Hawaii has MUCH MUCH more to offer and I hope to be able to go back again soon!

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Hi, I’m Laura

I’m based in Washington State and will definitely be showcasing local destinations, but this girl loves to fly all over the world!! If you love adventures and frugal travel, stick with me!