Well, aloha from Hawaii! We’ve been having lots of fun. We got here Tuesday afternoon (11 pm CDT), picked up a cute little red Cavalier, got to the hotel and crashed.
We both woke up early (just after 4 am HST) and we got to see some of the sunrise. Then we spent half the day hiking around Hawaii Volcanos National Park, getting some great shots of lava and rainforest, including hiking to where lava was flowing into the water from the end of Chain of Craters Road.
We crashed again early, and woke up the next morning almost as early. Got to see another sunrise, then went and saw several different waterfalls, drove lots of miles up the coast, went to a couple beach parks that didn’t really have beaches and ended up swimming in the pool at the hotel.
The next day, we drove down to the other end of Chain of Craters road (where the lava flowed over the road) and tried to find Lava Tree State Park, but mostly Alisha just got carsick on a winding, rollercoaster ‘scenic’ road. We stopped in a 7-eleven in Pahoa, and a local exterminator asked if we were getting to see the local sights. Then he asked where we were from and he told us he had a friend who lived in Loda, IL, at PO Box 1, a local Verizon repair guy. The local here left California, took a steady job and grows coffee in his spare time. What a small world. And now we are waiting around, in a Borders on a t-mobile hotspot, to drop off the rental car and take the flight over to Honolulu. A day and a half there and then we head home on the red eye.
Untouched photos here, stay away if on dialup (Mom and Dad, this means you).
A few tips:
- If you come to the big island, don’t stay in Hilo for more than a couple days. Stay in Kona a couple nights, drive over and fly out of there.
- If you stay at the Hilo Hawaiian, DON’T eat at the Queens Court restaurant, it’s overpriced and bad food.
- The food at Uncle Billy’s Steak & Seafood isn’t bad, and the free Hula show isn’t bad either. It’s the only Hawaiian owned hotel, so that’s kind of neat.
- Take it easy hiking around Volcanoes National Park, the trails really can get to you.
- If you don’t handle altitude changes well, this place is not for you. Going from sea level to 4500 feet is less than a 1 hour drive.
- Cafe Pesto, in downtown Hilo and somewhere on the Kona Coast, is very well priced and darn good food. The best (and cheapest) dinner we had was there.