First day in paradise
I can’t believe it is so beautiful here. I just arrived to Honolulu and am absolutely astonished by the beauty of this island. I mean everything I ever loved in any place is here. Turquoise water, sand beaches, flower trees, amazing mountains, beautiful views, the greenest gras I’ve ever seen, amazing food and the kindest people. It is just a dream come true. In this post I will talk about things I wish I knew before I came here and what I saw and experienced on my Day 1 Enjoy
What to expect from Hawaiian Airlines flight NYC to HNL
I flew from NYC on a direct 11h fight. First 10h were fine, but the last hour we experienced turbulences. I can’t stand turbulences so i wasn’t able to film the views when we were landing, and those were some beautiful views.
Make sure you sit on the right side of the plane to see this. I flew with Hawaiian Airlines and as my friends have asked, what to expect on an 11h flight, here it is. There is a lunch provided, during my flight it was pasta with eggplant + a glass of water and wine. It was served about 2h from the departure. Than there was an egg sandwich at about 1.5h before arrival, so right before the turbulences. There were complimentary snacks, tea, water and juice available throughout the flight. The entertainment cost $7 and gives access to movies, tv series and games. There is also kids option available. A couple of short documentaries about Hawaii, Sydney and Auckland were available free of charge as well as Hawaiian radio. Make sure to bring your headset as it is not provided. You will get a pillow and blanket. Flight I took was only half full so there was a possibility to change seats or get an extra lunch.
First day in Hawaii – How to get to Waikiki beach from HNL airport
My flight landed an hour earlier than expected, which was communicated by the pilot at the start of the journey. Even though I landed at 3:30, I was ready to leave the airport at 4:30. The journey from landing to complete stop near the gate was the longest I ever had, I was wandering if we are going to cross the island driving in the airplane:) Once we stopped and exited the aircraft we had to take a bus to another terminal to collect our checked bags.
Once I got my beg I headed to the 2nd level to the bus stop. There are 3 buses that go to Waikiki Beach (19, 20 and 42) which for me shouldn’t even matter and here is why. I waited probably 10 min for the bus and when it came, the driver told me it is not going to Waikiki, so I need to wait for another one. 5 mins later a bus no 19 to Waikiki Beach arrived but the driver told me I can’t go as I have 2 luggages, a carry on and checked bag, both the exact size that airlines allow. There is a rule that does not allow 2 bags;/ I never found those rules, so you now know. I wanted to take the bus as it is only $2.75 and was going to take 1h to get to Waikiki. If your luggage is a bag pack you should be fine, only luggage on wheels seems to be a problem.
Next option was Lyft/Uber. Price was $27 and 45min. Seemed to much so I went back on the ground floor as I remembered there was a $10 offer for a shuttle bus. I called them but they were not available ;/ The last option was Roberts Hawaii Express Shuttle, they have a stand near the luggage carousel. I took a ride with Mark and 7 other people and paid $16 for a 40min ride.
Fun fact I learned from Mark, the driver- Oahu has 1.1 mln population, whilst whole HI state has 1.3 mln, this is why they call it “The Gathering Island”.
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Day 1 on Oahu
The weather was beautiful and sunny. I woke up early, at 7am and went straight to the beach. As my airbnb was close to Duke statue I started there and walked towards the pool (Hilton Hawaiian Village).
In the back you can see Diamond Head Crater, I climbed it few days later. There were a lot of small fish in the pool. After the walk I went for lunch and I must tell the story that happened to me.
I ordered salmon and asked what was the fish of the day, it was sword fish so I decided to stay with salmon as planned. When I picked my food I noticed that the fish is white, not pink as I always eat, but i figured maybe there are different colors of salmon, and I decided to give it a try. It wasn’t salmon so I went back to the lady I ordered if from and asked if this was a salmon, she said it was sword fish and she is sorry and they will make a salmon for me. Not a problem at all, I waited for my meal to get ready. The weather was amazing so it didn’t bother me at all. One of the employees or owner (I do not know) came to say he is sorry for the mix up and that I had to wait and he offered me a pineapple smoothie on the house. Couldn’t say no to that 🙂 I love all smoothies:) I got my smoothie and a few minutes later I got my salmon and started eating. Food was delicious, weather was great and then I had not expected guest. A homeless lady came to my table and noticed I had the purple flower near my food , she wasn’t speaking english but from what I could understood she wanted my food, my smoothie and my flower. I was still in shock when she grabbed my flower from my plate so I said yes please take the smoothie. This is when the employee/owner noticed her and asked to leave. He asked me if she touched my food. I said she just took the flower but it wasn’t touching my food and she also took my smoothie. He apologized and said he will bring me new food. I told him that is not necessary as it wasn’t a problem for me I was already in the middle of my meal and wanted to take it as a takeout. When I was leaving I got a bottle of water as they were really sorry. This whole situation made me want to come back to this place again as they truly care about the customer, something I did not encounter in a long time. This are really caring and good people. I would recommend them to everyone. My salmon was $13 and it was delicious, I finished it as a dinner in the evening. That was also all I spent on food on my day 1 as I had my shake for breakfast. I drink Herbalife shakes in the mornings and I make them on water. I also had a banana that i bough night before. I will add prices at the end of the post.
Small salmon I had the other day in Barefoot Beach Cafe
I spent most of the day on my pineapple floatie floating in the left pool. At about 4pm I went on a walk to Diamond Head Beach and passed many nice beaches, War memorial, Aquarium and Diamond Head Lighthouse. Some photos from this walk as well. I also run into a guy who was keeping me company for some part of my walk, till the moment he told me there is a secret beach where he goes naked and asked me if I want to see, I said I am not interested and he replied that it could be a highlight of my trip. Well it definitely would but I still wasn’t tempted.
The highlight of my trip was Stairway to Heaven, and you can read the post here.
Makalei Beach Park
Red trees near Barefood Beach Cafe
Prices in Honolulu, based on ABC Stores current prices:
a 1.5l bottle of water cost $0.99
1 banana – 50- 69 cents
lunch – starts at $10, most dishes are for $14
Beach items are much cheaper than I expected prices from ABC Stores, chain available on every corner in Waikiki:
basic snorkeling gear $7 – I paid $30 for my mask on Amazon, I hate this mask, it didn’t stick to face at all.
Hawaiian towel, colorful with flowers, thick – $13
Flipflops – $10, I got mine in Nordstrom Rack as I lost mine on day 3 during my round the Island tour, more about it in another post 🙂
Hawaiian shirts $10-13
SPF oils/creams $10
basic floatie $4, my Pineapple floatie $30 (I paid less than $10 on Amazon for mine)
beach matte – $3
This was my day 1. I have a lot planned for this trip so make sure to subscribe as I probably will post daily (https://www.instagram.com/all_the_stuff_i_care_about/).
Let me know what would you like to know about Hawaii.
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