Hawaii Happenings: Favorites

As you can imagine, moving to Hawaii opens up a lot of new and different experiences. This is first installment in series I’m calling Hawaii Happenings. The idea is to give you a taste of our life here. Usually, this post will cover the most exciting thing Trev and I did that week. Since we’ve been here three weeks, I need to play catch up. So, without further ado, here are my favorite things I’ve done since we’ve been here.

The Beach

This one is so obvious I almost think it’s cheating. The thing is, the beach truly is the best thing about living here. Hawaii beaches are unlike any other beaches in the world. The vacation rental we’re in for the month is about a 15 minute walk to Waikiki Beach. Waikiki is a strange mashup of incredibly beautiful oceanfront and tourist hell. That’s not to say I don’t love it it. The sand is almost powder-like it’s so finely ground. The water is the kind of turquoise you see in movies. There’s also a barrier wall to keep sharks out the beach from eroding. One major change living here has been living in the middle of a tourist attraction. No matter where you go (at least so far), there are tourists. The thing is they’re there for a reason: it’s all stunning. You can’t blame people for wanting to see it.

Waikiki is great for people watching and a quick beach visit. We’ve also gone down there for a sunset swim and the weekly Friday fireworks. My favorite beach day so far, though, has been at Kailua Beach Park. This is one of those beaches that even though you’re there looking at it, you can’t believe it’s real. It’s just crystalline water, pristine white sand, and palm trees as far as the eye can see. We went on Easter because, you know, we’re alone on an island in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. Minus family, it was one of my favorite Easters ever.

Food

You didn’t think you would get a list of favorites from me without food on it, did you? You’re clearly delusional. I’ve had so much good food since I’ve been here, I don’t know where to begin. Oh yes I do, with Leonard’s malasadas. Leonard’s Bakery opened in 1952 when Leonard, the descendant of Portugese sugar cane workers, and his wife decided to give Hawaii the gift of malasadas, which are somewhere between doughnuts, fried dough, and heaven. Their history is actually quite interesting if you feel like reading up.

As you would expect, the sushi situation here is out of control. My favorite so far is Aloha Sushi in Diamond Head. Try to wrap your head around a mouth-watering 14 piece ahi tuna lunch special for $8. Another  of my favorites is the coconut pancakes at Wailana Coffeehouse, which is more of a diner than a coffeehouse. We’ve been twice since we found out about it last week. And of course, I can’t forget the fruit. I’ve been going to a framer’s market in the neighborhood every weekend. The mango and pineapple are crazy good. I also bought an avocado the size of my head.

Makapu’u Lighthouse Hike

The Makapu’u Lighthouse Trail is about the best bang for your buck possible. It’s a paved trail and takes about half an hour to reach the top. But once you’re there, you have panoramic views of the entire windward coast along with Koko Head crater. For those of you who have no idea what that means. I’ll let our pictures do the talking. This was a really fun Sunday morning for us and we even saw some whales! I can’t wait to take advantage of all the other amazing trails on the island.

Beach Sunset Yoga

I found Beach Sunset Yoga Hawaii my first week here. They have a pretty amazing thing going with discounted classes for residents – only $40 for monthlong unlimited classes. I’ve been practicing yoga overlooking the ocean in the morning and at sunset and the views are not getting old. The teachers are great and since I love exercising outside, so it’s a perfect fit for me. I’m dying to try one of their Jungle Yoga Hikes but I’m saving my reservation for the day I rejoin the real world and get a job.

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