Travel Diary: Hawaii Part 2

Here are a few more pics from our trip to Oahu, Hawaii. We stayed at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa, it is located right across from Waikiki Beach in the city center, which was wonderful because these was lots of options for things to do within walking distance, including multiple restaurants. The hotel offered various activities for guests and on our second night, we saw a luau. After the performance, we walked to Tikis Restaurant and enjoyed dinner on the balcony overseeing the ocean.

During our trip we did some sightseeing, but I was also able to get some R&R time! On one of the days, I spent the morning exploring the hotel and enjoyed some time in the jacuzzi, as well as reading by the pool. As a gift, I surprised my hubby with a massage at the Na Ho’ola Spa at the hotel.

Within the Hyatt are the Pualeilani Atrium Shops, a three-level shopping center, which had some nice stores. It made shopping for keepsakes and gifts we brought back for family convenient. My hubby also bought a nice Aloha shirt (Hawaiian shirt) at Rix Island Wear in Pualeilani. The hotel has an amazing open-air atrium. One of the guest activities is a guided tours of the atrium. They also have a number of beautiful parrots, which repeat the words guests say to them, it was cute! They reminded me of the parrot my grandmother had when we were growing up.

Hope you enjoy these pictures. In the next Travel Diary posts, I’ll include my visit to Ala Moana Center (the world’s largest open-air shopping center), the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort (hotel where my sister’s family stays when they go to Hawaii), walk along the Waikiki beach, and our visit to the Aulani – Disney Resort & Spa!

In case you missed it, here is the link to the post from our first full day in Oahu, Travel Diary: Hawaii Part 1 – Flight Over Oahu.

Have you been to Hawaii? If yes, which island? Do you have any hotel or sightseeing recommendations?



PS – Our trips to Orlando & Germany


The waterfall in the center of the Hyatt.


One of the beach views from the hotel. The location was wonderful, very central, and within walking distance of multiple shops and restaurants.


Waikiki Beach is located right across from the hotel. Look at the palm trees & clear water – breathtaking!


The Luau performance, presented by the Hyatt.



We enjoyed dinner at Tikis Grill & Bar.


I had a tuna tartar as a starter, hubby had a salad.


Hubby had steak as his entree, I had a salad.


The weather was a nice warm temperature, but more humid than San Diego. I spent most of the vacation with my hair styled back or up, and minimal (if any) make-up. The lei I am wearing, was one of the gifts we received when we checked-in at the hotel. It is made of kukui nut beads, which is the seed of the candlewood tree.

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On most of the days, we had breakfast at the hotel. The buffet had a good variety of options.


Hawaiian papaya & pineapple! The sweetest ever! Delicious!


I also tried this fruit.






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DSCN6317 DSCN6321 DSCN6322 DSCN6316 DSCN6326 DSCN6328 Hawaii has many visitors from Japan. There was signage  in Japanese throughout the hotel. On the islands, there are lots of shops catering to Japanese travelers.


These ABC stores are everywhere in Waikiki! There were three in the hotel!

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Travel Diary: Hawaii – Flight Around Oahu

Do you ever take pictures on vacations and then don’t get around to printing the pictures…..or in my case posting them? That is what happened to me with two recent trips we took: Hawaii & Boston. I think I also missed posting the pictures from our visit to Nancy, in France. With digital cameras, I tend to take hundreds of pictures. As a result, it takes me quite a bit of time to look through the pictures and select which ones to share with you, and then actually do the posting. I did mean to write a blog post with the pictures, but then life got in the way 🙂  You know how that goes.

Recently, a friend asked me why I didn’t post the pictures from Hawaii. When I told her, she replied, “you should still post them now.” It is not like the island or beach have changed, ha! So true! The pictures are recent! So, I’ll post the pictures from our trip to Hawaii.

Before this trip, I had never been to Hawaii. When I was single, I’d travel often with friends. When we would plan a vacation and Hawaii would come up as one of the options, we would end up choosing other locations like Europe, Miami, Cabo, or Northern California. I am not a lay on the beach all day, for multiple days, type of a person. Also, for some reason, to me Hawaii seemed like a romantic destination, which it is, but it is also a wonderful destination for a family vacation, surfing trip, or get-away with friends! And, there is a lot to see, historic locations, gorgeous landscapes, cultural venues, tourist locations, excellent shopping and top cuisine restaurants! And, of course some of the most beautiful beaches in the world…with warm water. Would I go back? Most definitely yes!

We visited the island of Oahu. The weather was warm and humid, but bearable, it reminded me of Miami weather. The first day, we checked in, had dinner, and explored the area around the hotel. We were staying right in front of the beach, but also on one of the main streets, with lots of other hotels, shops, and restaurants, so there was a lot to see – and lots of people! It was fun to walk around and see the shops.

As a hobby, my hubby is a pilot. One of our favorite things to do when we visit new cities is make (take) an aerial flight. This was a unique flight because it was around the entire island and in about an hour we flew around Oahu. It was amazing! We saw the landscape, beaches, farms, many homes, Pearl Harbor, tourist destinations, and Disney’s Aulani. I work with the Disneyland Resort folks and interview them a couple times per year. When Aulani was about to open, I did an interview and when we went to Oahu, I was very curious to see and visit Aulani. My hubby has a friend who lives on the island and he joined us for the flight. Between him and the co-pilot, they gave us aerial tour of the island.

Here are the pics – an aerial perspective of Oahu. Hope you like them!

Have you been to Hawaii? Did you like it?



PS – Travel Diary: Hawaii Part 2; Travel Diary: Hawaii Part 3 (Ala Mona Center & Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort), and Visiting Disney’s Aulani Resort & Spa


A quick pic before the flight – next to the plane.


An interesting little fact about Oahu is that private flights also use the same landing strip as major airline flights (we flew out on a small, private plane, on the same landing strip we arrived to the island on –  while on a commercial airline flight). Usually, in larger cities, private planes are kept at smaller airports and use those landing strips, not the same landing strips as major airlines. So, in Oahu, we had to wait in line to depart after a huge plane, it was interesting.


You don’t see this type of landing strip everyday, water on both ends (sorry for the dark spots, this is the best shot I could get, the plane’s wing is visible in the right corners of the pic).


So green & tropical!

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These homes were nestled among the landscape.

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This is one of my favorite aerial shots: I like how it represents the three perspectives of ocean, land, and open space – plus the way the sun is beaming through the clouds, and the visible waves in the right side.


Sky, land, & sea.

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Nature at its best! Took my breathe away!


I was able to zoom into a catamaran that was sailing in the ocean, look at the clear water!

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The Disneyland Resort – Aulani! An aerial perspective. We visited it while we were there, I’ll post those pics in one of the next Parts of the Hawaii Travel Diary.  It has the Disney magic, captured in a resort, on its own private beach!

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Pearl Harbor.


We landed .