Existing Member?

Going Around the World


USA | Saturday, 3 June 2017 | Views [224]

On Thursday, we started off the day making eggs at the apartment then caught an Uber to pick up a rental car. We had plans to explore a bit of the island so we needed a rental car to make that easier. We get dropped off at the Economy Rental lot and it was the most sketchy rental car lots I have ever seen, no wonder it was cheap. The car is a tiny Nissan but it will get the job done. We headed over to Lanikai Beach, which is on the east side of Oahu. The drive was beautiful as we drove through the center of the island, passing volcanic mountains  and driving through the jungle forests. As we got over closer to the beach, Tommy and I stopped for lunch at a sandwich shop called Timmy T’s. It was a great little shop, the people there seemed to love their jobs and had fun with it. They throw you your sandwich to your seat once it is finished. Very unique.

We arrived near Lanikai beach and we planned to hike the Pillbox Trail which overlooked the beach. We parked and headed to the trailhead and quickly realized that this was going to be much more of a tricky hike than either of us had originally thought. The first portion of the trail was extremely steep and had some loose gravel in some areas, which made it difficult to climb without using the trees as an anchor on each side of the path. We continued up the trail taking breaks along the way. Very quickly you could see the gorgeous Lanikai Beach from the hill we were climbing. The view was absolutely stunning, water crystal clear, perfect sandy beach, sun was shining, and islands in the background. It was an incredible view. Tommy decided he had hiked enough and I continued the rest of the way by myself. There were 2 old WWII bunkers that overlooked the beach, along the hike. They have since been painted over with graffiti, but you can climb onto the top of them and get an even better view of the beach. I made it to the top of the second bunker then I turned back to head down the hill. It was obviously easier going down than up, but it was still very tricky to get down without falling.

We changed shoes at the car then we walked across the street to the beach. The beach looked just as beautiful as it had when we were looking over it from above. We hung out on the beach for a while and went swimming as well. The water was a perfect temperature and we just floated around for a while. After a few hours, it started to rain and we packed our things up to go find dinner. The first place we found nearby ended up being a very fancy place near the beach, which was not what either Tommy or I were vibing. We went and found The Shack, which was a locals bar and we watched the end of the first NBA Finals game. On our way back to Honolulu, we decided to go explore through some of the neighborhoods that were high up on mountains that overlooked the city. We wanted to see how difficult it was to drive up there and we started looking up values of houses, just to see how crazy. The houses on the mountains were expensive, but very cheap relative to the ones we saw near the beaches. We also stopped at Walmart to grab some breakfast food and other snacks. This place was in a rough part of town, we probably could have picked a better place to go, but we survived. When we got back to the apartment we had to figure out what to do with the new rental car. At first we drove it into the garage and tried to find the apartment number to see if that was the assigned spot...it wasn’t. We then were going to park in guest parking, but we asked the front desk and they said they tow after 1 am, that wouldn’t work. The guys at the front desk told me to go find Jeremy’s spot, they gave the the number, and see if he took his car with him. If so, we just park there. So I went to find the 7th floor of the parking garage, but I couldn’t. I ended up getting locked in a stairwell and had to go all the way back down to the ground floor to get out. I then walked around the outside of the entire complex to get back to the main lobby. I eventually found the spot and parked the car, it sure was an event.

Friday, we were all ready to hike Manoa Falls with Patrick, the bartender from Wednesday night who offered to take us and show us the ropes. We went across the street to the meeting point where he told us he would pick us up and we waited for over a half hour. We called and texted, but Patrick stood us up for the hike. It was not a huge deal, more annoying than anything because we wasted an hour waiting for him, when it was all said and done. We then went to the hike location, it was just 15 minutes outside of downtown. The first part of the hike was cool as we walked through thick jungles and there were beautiful Hawaiian flowers everywhere. As we continued on the hike, we started to get skeptical because all of the people coming back were 100% dry and we were told that we could swim at this waterfall. We make through the pretty simple path, slight incline, and the waterfall is so underwhelming. I had seen online that you are able to hike to the top of the rock wall where the water falls from and had I been on my own, I probably would've attempted it, but I knew Tommy would not want to do it. I also decided not to because my ankle and foot was extremely swollen from the bite I got on my left leg. The redness was increasing and had only been getting worse with each passing day, so I decided I would not try anything too crazy and I would be dropped off at the Urgent Care to get it checked out. I was really pissed that we wasted time going to this hike location when there were so many other cool sounding hikes. There was one that was around one of the volcano craters and had three waterfalls you could swim in along the way. This hike was a 5 hour task and with my ankle, I would have struggled most likely. I guess I will just have to come back and tackle that hike next time.

Tommy dropped me off at Urgent Care and he went back to the apartment. I had concerns that my cheap insurance may not work in Hawaii, so I called and of course there are no providers in Hawaii that I could see. So I had to go and pay out of pocket to get my leg looked at and have a doctor tell me there was a skin infection. He gave me a script and sent it to a different Walmart for me. At the end of the visit, I remembered I have travel insurance, so I should be able to get the money reimbursed because I was bitten on the trip in Thailand.

We went and found Amina’s Pizza for lunch (I am hitting all the foods I have been missing out on the last 2 months) and it was really good. We picked up my prescription at Walmart and I started taking my antibiotics. We decided that we would just hang out the rest of the afternoon/early evening down at the pool. The pool area is extremely fancy, as is the entire apartment. I feel very out of place at this place, the Navy must be giving Jeremy a nice stipend for this place. We chilled at the pool and the hot tub until management kicked us out at 10 pm. We then went out to see what Waikiki is like on a Friday night. We ended up having a great time at a bar called Rumfire, right on the beach.

Today we planned to go to the North Shore of the island. With the city being in the south, the north side of the island is much more rural Hawaii and it gets away from all the tourist hustle. We made the hour drive to the north side and grabbed lunch at Giovanni's, a shrimp food truck. Giovanni’s is a local favorite. Multiple people I met during my travels in Asia that I needed to eat at this food truck when I was on Oahu. The shrimp scampi was really good, cooked really well and gave you a healthy portion with rice. After lunch we went to find which beach we wanted to hang out at. There were several options, one was more secluded but the sand was more “volcanic”, one had rock jumping but it was extremely busy. We decided on Banzai Pipeline, which is known for having the best waves on the island. During the winter months, the beach holds the major international surfing competitions with 25 and 30 foot waves. It is too dangerous to swim during those months, but during the summer it is swimmer friendly. The sand was not quite as nice as Lanikai, but it was still very good. The beach as a whole was also not as picturesque as Lanikai, but the waves were very impressive. The beach is very high relative to the sea level and it drops out very quickly. The steep incline of the beach causes for some strange wave interactions when you stand along the edge because the wave comes crashing in but the previous wave is sliding quickly back down the hill into the ocean. This caused some crazy water patterns and people would get rolled up in the water temporarily, it was good fun.  We were bobbing around in the waves for a few hours then decided we should go find dinner then head back to the beach to watch the sunset. We went to a BBQ food truck that had some wonderful pulled pork, very satisfying. We made it back to Sunset Beach in time to see the “sunset”. The clouds had rolled in and there was unfortunately not much to see. Driving back we took the coast road along the east side and drove right along the ocean for 25 miles or so. It was a very cool drive, but would have been even more cool had it not been getting so dark.

Tomorrow is the last full day in Hawaii, gotta live it up...



Add your comments

(If you have a travel question, get your Answers here)

In order to avoid spam on these blogs, please enter the code you see in the image. Comments identified as spam will be deleted.

About jwagenknecht

Follow Me

Where I've been

Photo Galleries

My trip journals



Travel Answers about USA

Do you have a travel question? Ask other World Nomads.