Friday, September 30, 2011

Day 5 - Pearl Harbour

Up bright and early yet again and on the bus to Pearl Harbour.

What a beautiful place and very well kept. We had a look around the museum and displays, really well done.

You then go and watch a short movie about the attack on Pearl Harbour and then go on a boat over to the Arizona Memorial, which is a platform directly over the USS Arizona which sunk and many bodies were never retrieved.

The thing that you notice first thing off the boat is the smell of oil, apparently the boat still leaks oil as it had millions of gallons of oil in it when it was attacked. You can see in these pics the reflection of the oil in the water.

It is quite a humbling experience to be there.

 The round thing sticking up out of the water is actually one of the gun turrets from the ship.

When we came back we had  a look around the grounds and all the memorials.

The best thing they had there was that some of the remaining veterans often come down and volunteer and sit so you can chat to them. They have a printed sheet about what they were doing when the attack happened and their life after. It was really cool to talk to them, they are getting on in years and I guess it won't be too long before there are none left.

We then headed over on the shuttle to Ford Island to the Aviation Museum. There are some other things you can see there like another boat and a submarine but Craig is right into planes so I let him go to the Aviation museum LOL. I thought going on a guided tour would be quicker and more interesting than Craig taking his time looking at every display and reading every little plaque but I was wrong! I asked the lady at the desk how long the tour took and was told about an hour but 2 1/4 hours later....!!!! I was very bored by then LOL - even Craig was yawning! The guide was very good though, a young university student who is an aviation enthusiast, had a great knowledge.

 Some bullet holes in the glass in one of the hangars...

We had a bit of lunch there then headed back to the hotel.
We decided to walk down to the Ala Moana Beach Park and Magic Island and have a swim later in the afternoon. What a lovely spot!
View from our balcony...

The view looking back to our hotel and Waikiki....

And as the sun started going down we headed over to the wall where everyone was gathering waiting for the sunset - what a view!  
Sunset reflecting off Diamond Head...

Back to the hotel again to clean up then headed to the Ala Moana Shopping Centre (again LOL) to grab some dinner in the food court then around the back of the centre to find Walmart and have a browse and some shopping. Picked up a beautiful lei there for $5 !! $20 at the airport LOL
 The Hawaiian look LOL.... Lei from Walmart & Frangipani from the tree!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Hawaii - day 4

So it is Sunday in Honolulu and we researched a local church last night to go to this morning but we set the alarm clock wrong and we slept in!! 

So we headed off to the beach down in front of our hotel and the Hilton next door. As we were walking down we could hear this beautiful singing and there on the beach in front of the Hilton was this hawaiian choir singing - it was just beautiful. So we plonked on the beach there and it turns out they have a Church service on the beach each sunday. As we were getting settled all went quiet and then they started singing the US national anthem and then we realised it was September 11. The most amazing thing was all the people hanging out on the beach and swimming in the  water all stopped, faced the flagpole, hands on their hearts and joined in the national anthem. It was really goosebump stuff!!Sorry we didn't take the camera down with us!
After a very refreshing swim - the water is just the right temperature there - we headed back to the hotel, got cleaned up then went to the Bar & Grill in the hotel for lunch, these were some pics of the back deck of the hotel and the restaurant. 

The hotel - we were on the 18th floor - about 6 levels from the top. 

A beautiful setting for lunch....

This is looking into the lobby from the rear, all open and lets the lovely breeze in -


 This is the view from the lobby of the rear hotel deck .......full of gorgeous gardens and water features...............

This is the front of the hotel..........

We then headed to the huuuuuge Ala Moana Shopping Centre for yet some more retail therapy! They have the biggest food court we have ever seen there, 

this is just a very small part of it..............but we decided to have dinner at Ruby Tuesday's  - yum!