There’s something just a little bit magical about this place. It’s not just this one city. It’s all of Hawaii. But if I was forced to choose just 1 city to spend the rest of my life? It would be Honolulu…
Maybe it was the fact that we’d just spent 5 days at sea, combined with it being the first bit of land I’d stepped out onto in nearly 10 days… I don’t know? All I do know though is that I’d got hold of a bike and was going to spend as much time as I could peddling around and getting sweaty!
Honolulu is the capital of Hawaii, and contains among other things the Ala Moana Centre, which is the largest open air shopping centre in the world. As tempting as it was to go a bit crazy with the dollar, the minute I wheeled that bike off the ship, I got speaking to one of the local security blokes who basically mapped out exactly where I should cycle for some decent views. I didn’t need to be told twice and was up and racing south towards Diamond Head a few moments later.
The route took me along the 2 miles of surfer filled Waikiki beach, surrounded by all the hotels, shops and restaurants you could possibly imagine.
As pretty as this was, I had a more important destination to get to. An extinct volcano called Diamond Head. I’d been promised (don’t ask me how they work this out) that it hadn’t erupted for at least 150,000 years. This put it nicely in my ‘unlikely to explode’ column and I was happy to get a bit closer.
I’d jogged up and down the volcano a few years earlier (takes about 45minutes) and didn’t fancy doing it again. I had a bike this time anyway (jumped on the bus last time) and hadn’t seen what was on the other side of this beauty. I did however, cycle up to and through the tunnel that leads to the entrance to the trail. This was simply because I like tunnels.
So, after I had got my fill of cycling through tunnels I carried on with the route round the back of the volcano. This is where I discovered…
Beautiful isn’t it. If you look a bit closer you can probably see little dots bobbing around on the sea. These are the clever little surfers that avoid the busy Waikiki beach and head round to the beach parks near Diamond Head. Clever little monkeys I say. You avoid all the crowds of tourists and get to hang out in a nice community of surfers. I’m sure there’s a lot of surfer jargon happening down there. Makes me want to join in but unfortunately I have no time… (plus I don’t speak surfer that well.)
Just in case you didn’t feel welcome in this lovely place they’ve laid out a few flags with a welcoming message to prove they’re a friendly bunch (They really are surprisingly friendly… but then they are living in Hawaii.)
Seems that the only problem in this place is the disposal of shopping trollies in unusual places (i.e. not a bin.) Maybe it’s the excessive use of shopping trollies to cart your paraphernalia back and forth between points of interest (to the trolley pusher) that causes this. Maybe they need to add a pound fee, or maybe just make them more rugged so people don’t have to dispose of them. Bag/Trolley for life?
Eventually I had to head back to the ship, and after realising that I had timed it pretty much perfectly, I jumped in the shower, then ran back off the ship and into a taxi to head back to Waikiki beach to watch the sunset while sitting on a (very warm) wall facing the sea. It didn’t take me long to find the silhouettes of people just as interesting as the actual sunset itself…
I just didn’t realise there were so many posers in the world. Maybe they only come out at night.
The only way to finish this day? Pick up some super tasty Sushi, get back to the ship quickly before the ship sails, and watch a movie!
So finally… Although not related to Honolulu (although it was the nearest big city at the time I took the photos) I grabbed a couple of shots of the Lunar Eclipse taken from the Pacific Ocean. I’m sure it looks just the same anywhere else…?
… and then just because I can, I decided to dress it up a bit with a filter. I think maybe I should have left it as is…?!