Thursday, 11/22/07 Thanksgiving DayHonolulu, OahuSunrise 6:47 A.M. We received another traditional Hawaiian greeting when we arrived at the most famous city in Hawaii, and its capital – Honolulu - at 7:30 this morning.
Aloha Tower is the landmark of Honolulu’s Our tour today is the Natural Highlights of Oahu waterfront. The bus drives to different areas, you get out and explore a bit and then hop back on it for the next stop. We received water and snacks again! Our tour guide was extremely knowledgeable.We shopped at the Aloha Tower Marketplace atthe harbor, right next to the ship. The shopswere open for the cruise ship passengers, eventhough it is Thanksgiving. Another cruise shipwas in port, too.
If we ever comeDiamond Head Crater is the most recognized back, Carol wouldlandmark in Hawaii and is the backdrop to like to hike up theWaikiki. The cone and crater of this extinct steep 760-ft.volcano was formed by a steam explosion. It got summit.its name when explorers mistook calcite crystalsfound there for diamonds. Here in the crater we saw a variety of Its Hawaiian name is Leahi. It is said that trees, includingHiiaka, sister of the fire goddess Pele, gave Leahi monkeypod,its name because the summit resembles the schefflera andforehead (lea) of the ahi fish. The Hawaiians coconut.used to use the summit for sacrifices!
We saw some expensive housing along Oahu’s southern coast.Koko Crater Coconuts! A Pacific Golden Plover and a Red Crested Cardinal at Hanauma Bay Nature Park
Hanauma Bay Nature PreserveThe bay floor is actually the crater ofan ancient volcano. We bothcommented on its great snorkeling!
Sandy Beach and its volcanic rock reef as viewed from the Makapu’u Lookout
Manana Island (Rabbit Island, rear) andKaohikaipu Island (Turtle Island) from This cove wasMakapu’u Beach Park featured in the movie “50 First Dates.” Rabbits were raised on Manana Island until 1994 and today it is a protected bird sanctuary. Deborah Kerr and Burt Lancaster rolled around passionately on this beach in the film Halona Point Blow Hole - the sea is forced "From Here To Eternity." through volcanic vents erupting into a fountain. When the tide is high it has a huge spray.
This small state monument protects the ruins of Ulupo Heiau, a Hawaiian religious site. The heiau ruinsincorporate the stonework and beliefs of the early Hawaiians, both rich in folklore. It is likely that thefunction of this heiau changed over time. It probably began as a mapele or agricultural heiau withceremonies and rites conducted to insure the fertility of the crops grown in Kawai Nui. In later times, it mayhave become a luakini heiau, dedicated to success in war, with structures erected atop this massive stoneplatform, including an altar, an oracle tower or anuu, thatched hale, and notches in the terraces to hold thekii or wooden images.
Wild Maui roosters and hensnear the lookout The 1200-ft. elevation of the Nuuanu Pali Lookout ("Cool Height Cliff") overlooking the 985 foot cliffs of the Koolau Mountain Range, offers spectacular views of the windward coast and Kaneohe Bay. It was here in 1795 that King Kamehameha and his warriors defeated the Oahu armies by sending them over these steep, forested cliffs and claiming his It is very windy up here! victory and uniting the Hawaiian Islands.
Back on our own at theharbor, we took a moment forJim to feed the fish.
The Official Residence of King Kalakaua from 1882 until his death in 1891 His sister-successor, Queen Lili-uokalani, lived here until the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy in 1893. She wrote the farewell song, “Aloha Oe.” The monarchy used to marry within the family until Christian missionaries brought Christianity.Aliʻiōlani Hale, home of the Hawaiʻi State SupremeCourt with the statue of Kamehameha the Great
Sights around downtown Honolulu Four different boats played the part of the S.S. Minnow in the Gilligan’s Island TV show. One was used in the opening credits and rented here from the Ala Wai Small Boat Harbor. It is also the end point of the world famous TransPac sailing race.
Diamond Head Crater and Waikiki from Ala Moana Beach Park, the largest urban beach park inHonolulu. There were many locals enjoying their Thanksgiving day at the beach.
We can’t believe this is our last night on board! Tonight we have to pack and put our luggage out in thehallway. They will pick it up during the night for us to retrieve from the port. The Christmas decorations were put up today.
Friday, 11/23/07 Sunrise 6:47 A.M. Aloha, Honolulu – Aloha, Hawaii! The souvenirs we brought home for ourselves included a goblet carved from a coconut, a toothpick holder, a lei, and a shell necklace. Total nautical miles traveled: 2255 + 110 +173 + 230 = 2,768 Total air miles traveled – 1723 + 2556 + 1745 = 6,024Yikes, we can see ourbreath! We need avacation!