Thursday, July 15, 2010

Worldboarding Memory #9 - Honolulu

Traveling is such a huge part of my life and work (Red Deer, here I come!!!), and I am absolutely in love with it.  Whether it's to Toronto (pics from this weekend's Afrofest 2010 are coming soon) or Latvia (Riga is really the bomb, y'all!), each place is such a jewel with soooooo much to offer. 

I was in Honolulu last year, and as with each trip, I really tried to build in my list of criteria - stuff to check off to make sure I get the best out of every trip.  One of my mantras is DO IT ALL!  On vacay, that's not always possible, but this list helps keep me grounded.  It helps me to do a smaller number of things, but enjoy the substance of the place, its people, and its traditions. 

  1. Art/culture - I stopped into tons of galleries, which often feature the best of a town's up and coming artists.  Also paid some homage at Pearl Harbor - it's actually memorialized quite beautifully.
  2. Nature - Enjoyed mucho tiempo en la playa.  How else do you really see spending island time!?!?
  3. Adventure - See my humble attempt at cliff diving.....the smack on the tummy was worth the thrill!!!
  4. Athletic/Fitness - The stairs at Diamond Head State Monument were a killer!!!
  5. Nightlife - This is always the easiest to cross of the list!
  6. Relaxation - I had a spa day at the Kahala Hotel, and it was just amazing.  Lots of hotels around - check the timing of your trip for special deals!!!
  7. Live Music - The Polynesian Cultural Center is an obvious choice, but I still enjoyed!
  8. Local Food - Stopped by a church yard for some local barbeque.  It was a fundraiser, so I stuffed my mouth for a great cause!
How about you?  I'm curious to learn about new ways to make the best of trip-hopping.  Would love to hear about your travels and adventures!

Ciao y'all!

California Dreamin'

Back from an AWESOME Pacific Coast Venture, and it was such an amazing time.  It started with the surprise of my life...running into my good friend Tori (now living in North Carolina) at the San Francisco airport. 
Best way to start off the trip!

The first stop - Golden Gate Bridge
It was kinda foggy that day (chilly, too!). 
Glad I packed in layers!

On our first day driving down the Pacific Coast highway, I got attacked by stationary biting nettles.  Felt like an army of bees!!!!

(Note to self: 
next time, wear the jeans that I over-packed).

First day in LA - and Rodeo Drive it was!

The block is incredibly small, but there were enough cafes and restaurants to keep us busy. There's a shuttle now that takes you all around Beverly Hills.  It hadn't started while we were there, but if you go, check it out here.

It was a total accident (I wanted to exchange a dress from Zara) that we happened upon
The Grove, an outdoor shopping plaza that was just beautiful.  A trolley runs the length of the plaza!


We made our way back up the coast to
San Francisco, where Fisherman's Wharf kept us very well fed!  Instead of taking the 8 hour drive back up the Pacific Coast Highway, we cheated a bit and took the less lengthy California Route 101.  Not quite as scenic (but there are some glorious mountains to behold!), but worth the savings in hours!

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