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Sunny AZ Girl

Hawaii by Land & Sea – POA Cruise 5-14-2011

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A Bit About Us.

 

Over a year of planning, reading Cruise Critic every day, searching out the very best places to see, the very best activities for our interests, plotting out Google maps for amazing itineraries and here I was…….two weeks before our dream vacation to Hawaii….in the hospital, recovering from my second surgery in a week after a sudden gall bladder attack and subsequent abdominal abscess. I had made it very clear to the doctor before my surgery that I WAS going to Hawaii in a very short time and he had assured me that a gall bladder surgery was routine and I would be up and at my normal activities in 4 days time. Did my insistence on keeping the surgery simple cause him to miss an infection already brewing from a leaky gall bladder? Or was it just a case of bad luck? I will never know. However, I did know that for about a week all my careful planning was about to go for naught as things went from bad to worse in the hospital. However, true to his word, my doctor had me up and heading for the plane on Wednesday morning, May 11 with instructions to take it easy and listen to my body when it needed to take a rest. I didn’t care. I was heading for my very first trip to Hawaii!

 

Since my youngest daughter graduated from college my husband Steve & I have been bitten by the cruise bug. This would be my 12th cruise and Steve’s 10th. We have cruised to the Caribbean & the Mexican Riviera mostly and I went with my daughter to Alaska on the Carnival Spirit last July. We have sailed mainly on Royal Caribbean and a couple of times on Princess and have loved every cruise. Lately we have chosen cruises for the itinerary primarily and the NCLA Pride of America offered the best itinerary for our needs. The overnights in Maui & Kauai were the main attractions for us. I was a bit concerned about the bad press the POA has received in the past, but encouraged by the better reviews as of late. We decide to approach this cruise with the attitude that the trip is all about seeing the islands and make the best of it. We decided to assure a wonderful experience by booking three nights pre-cruise at the Turtle Bay Resort on the north Shore of Oahu and one night post cruise at the Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach in Waikiki. Joining us on the cruise would be my brother Bob & sister-in-law Cindy. Our age range is 48 – 61. Bob & Cindy are more active than us on a good day and my surgery would hold me back a bit, but we agreed to have a great time, even if it meant we were not always doing the same things. So now, let the vacation begin!

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All packed and ready to go!

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Day 1 – Oahu & the Turtle Bay Resort

 

Our flight from Phoenix, AZ on Hawaiian Airlines was uneventful as far as flights go, despite the people in the seats in front of us who immediately put the seat backs in full recline mode as soon as the wheels of the airliner left ground. I was determined not to let that sour my mood and I pulled out a book to read. I never get a chance to read a good novel except while on vacation, so this was my signal that I could let the chains of everyday life let loose and just relax. Soon enough I was seeing the first signs of the islands from my window seat. As we approached Honolulu Airport we flew right over Pearl Harbor, where we would be the following day.

 

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We had booked the first three nights at Turtle Bay Resort after receiving recommendations from two different friends. This was a change for us as we were accustomed to Priceline Hotels, bottom rate, for our one night pre-cruise stays. I found the best rate with Blue Hawaii Resorts. Our room was to be a Ocean Front Deluxe with a regular lanai where we could sit and take in the ocean breeze and included a lei greeting at the airport. We wanted to unwind before the cruise so the North Shore and its relaxed atmosphere appealed to us.

 

We rented a car through Thrifty and were registered as Blue Chip Members. The office appeared to be disorganized when we were there and the Blue Chip line took longer than the regular line. Bob & Cindy flew in the next day and had the same experience. Once they got through the Blue Chip line they were told they could not do Blue Chip as Cindy had reserved the car under her name & Bob was to be the main driver. So back in line for them! The nice thing for us was that we reserved a mid size car and were upgraded to a Jeep Liberty.

 

Since we were arriving at 11:30 AM and our check in time was at 3:00 PM my Google Map itinerary had us heading out of Honolulu to the scenic eastern (windward) side of the island. But first we had to stop at Bailey’s Antiques and Aloha Shirts for Steve. Ever since seeing this place on the TC “No Reservations” Steve had to go there first. It was smaller than I expected but was crammed with Aloha Shirts, mostly if not all made in Hawaii. Now my husband is a Hawaiian shirt connoisseur. He has over 30 shirts at home. He also wants them engineered, which means the patterns have to match up. So, this can be a pricey collection! I collect Christmas ornaments & pictures on a cruise, so I am a cheap date compared to him. He found two shirts he had to have.

 

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Now it was around 1 PM Hawaiian time and we were hungry. So we asked the lady at the store to recommend a nearby spot. I must say the place she sent us was great! It is called the Diamondhead Market & Grill. It was packed with locals. We both had Hui-Hui Chicken plates. Two small plates (which were huge to us) and drinks cost us about $16. Best deal we had the entire 11 days in Hawaii. It was delicious, too. We knew we were really in Hawaii at this point.

 

After lunch we headed to the Pali Highway to go across the island. Steve had taken my Google maps and put in every GPS coordinate and/or address on our itinerary into his trusty GPS before we left home, so we had no problem finding our first stop, the Pali Lookout. Here we saw our first of many island chickens. Parking is $3 and uses a funky little parking machine which only takes credit cards, so be aware. The views were gorgeous, despite the low clouds.

 

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Our next stop was the Byodo-In Temple in the Valley of the Temples. What an amazing, peaceful place this is! After hitting the gong and taking off our shoes we entered the temple to see the large Budda that dominates the front area. The gardens are amazing. This temple is located in a large cemetery that is comprised of different areas for different faiths. I would recommend a stop here, if only for an hour.

 

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Continuing On

 

We were now getting anxious to get to our resort, but we had a few more stops along the way. As the road north came closer to the ocean and the population became more spread out we felt as if we had entered a different world from the busy highways of Honolulu. This area was quaint and we began to fall in love with this side of the island. More chickens were seen along the road and every turn of the road gave way to breathtaking scenery. The speed limits had a frustrating habit of changing constantly from 45 mph to 35 mph and back again. Quite a change from the Phoenix area when people do not think twice about buzzing past you at 80 mph on our 65 mph freeways! That took a while to get used to. But we quickly fell into the mode of “island time” and we could feel our muscles relaxing the further north we drove. Scenic stops along the road included Chinaman’s Hat

 

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And La’ie Point, where a tsunami once punched a hole in the land.

 

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At 4 PM we turned into the beautiful Turtle Bay Resort. We knew as soon as we entered the gates we were in for a treat.

 

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The friendly staff made us feel at home immediately. Our room was immaculate and luxurious. All of the rooms at Turtle Bay have an ocean view, but upgrading to an Ocean Front gave us a substantial lanai where we could sit and sip our morning coffee or eat a meal should we wish to do so. Turtle Bay has a “surf side” and a “snorkel side”. Our room faced the surf side of the resort and with our door open we could hear the sound of the surf as it gently came ashore. We knew we would not want to leave at that moment.

 

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We had dinner reservations at the resort’s golf club restaurant, Lei Lei’s at 7 PM, so after a rest we changed and went down to the lobby. The staff had a golf cart waiting to take us to the restaurant. Here we finally had our lei picture taken.

 

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After a wonderful meal – we split a huge Caesar Salad and a Seafood Scampi - and a glass of wine the three hour time difference finally caught up with us and we were off to bed. After all, we have an early morning tomorrow. Pearl Harbor is our next stop.

 

You can see the rest of our Day 1 pictures here.

 

I am back to work for the first time since before my surgery tomorrow (ugh!) Twelve hours on my feet, so I will try to post Day 2 on Friday.

Edited by Sunny AZ Girl

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Oh yeah Ginny.....so glad that your first day was wonderful......and you look great in your picture.....can't wait to read your review.....I was starting to go through withdrawals without any reviews to read.......and your view from your room.....gorgeous...

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Ginny,

 

I too am from AZ. I live in Mesa. We are going on the POA in a little over 2 weeks and we can't wait. Just reading the beginning of your review has me so excited. I love the pics! :D Thank you for taking the time to start a review. I sure hope you feel better.

 

Cheri

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Hi, Ginny! Great review so far and your pictures are simply beautiful! I'm really getting excited for our cruise in September!:D

I love the very first picture you posted of your dogs -- are they both Chihuahuas? They are adorable! How big are they? We have an "oversized" Chihuahua, Boomer, who at 16 months weighs 16 pounds and is active as can be!

Can't wait to read and see more of your great cruise!:)

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Mahalo to you all for the nice comments. I will try to keep up, although I am not sure I will be done by the time you leave, Cheri.

 

Sandy - yes the dogs are chihuahaus. The were rescues a few years back, so they may not be "purebred". They wanted to go, too! They learned the hula while we were gone.;)

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Ginny,

 

I too am from AZ. I live in Mesa. We are going on the POA in a little over 2 weeks and we can't wait. Just reading the beginning of your review has me so excited. I love the pics! :D Thank you for taking the time to start a review. I sure hope you feel better.

 

Cheri

 

Cheri: You should join Ginny & I on the Arizona Cruisers threads (see my signature). Lots of AZ cruisers there & Ginny and I have become good friends along with several others.

 

I'm going on my 2nd Hawaii cruise in July and excited to hear Ginny's review. Standing by patiently Ginny. Keep it coming when you are able. Welcome home!

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Loved your pictures Ginny. Turtle Bay looks like a winner. Really nice room.

 

I also like the Byodo-In temple. Very nice. How far of a drive is it from Waikiki area? Not sure if we can swing it or not on our Oahu post cruise stay but I might like to try.

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Oh goody, another review! It is great to read what everyone does on their trips! Can't believe you have been and are home again!

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I love reading reviews and yours is fabulous....I look forward to the rest of it!! Love the pictures too!!!! Where is Baileys Antiques and Aloha shirts located? Would love to stop there for my DH's shirts.

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Mahalo to you all for the nice comments. I will try to keep up, although I am not sure I will be done by the time you leave, Cheri.

 

Sandy - yes the dogs are chihuahaus. The were rescues a few years back, so they may not be "purebred". They wanted to go, too! They learned the hula while we were gone.;)

 

Well, they are both darling!:) What are their names?

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Ginny,

 

Thanks so much for starting your review. We will be on POA in Dec and can hardly wait for our cruise. I have been a silent follower for several months reading everything I can get my hands on about Hawaii. I am sure I will have lots of questions to ask you as there will be 7 in our group with ages from 60 to 81. I am trying to find tours and excursions that will not be too active for my mom and I since we both have bad knees. We would like to see as much as we can without walking ourselves to death. I am hoping you will be able to give us tips and recomend tours that might be suitable for us. Also I would love to hear about the must see places since this might be the only time we make it to Hawaii.

 

Can't wait to read more...love your pictures also.

 

Thanks,

 

Sheila

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Ginny - I've been looking forward to your report and am enjoying it like I knew I would. Your pictures are beautiful. I too am waiting patiently for the next installment.

 

Did you watch "Cougar Town" last night? The group went to Hawaii and stayed at Turtle Bay.

 

Donna

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Loved your pictures Ginny. Turtle Bay looks like a winner. Really nice room.

 

I also like the Byodo-In temple. Very nice. How far of a drive is it from Waikiki area? Not sure if we can swing it or not on our Oahu post cruise stay but I might like to try.

Turtle Bay was fantastic. Truly, I could have stayed there much longer.....if my vacation time and budget would hold out.:eek:

 

I believe the Byodo Temple would be about 1/2 hour from Waikiki. Not long at all. It is just off the end of the H-3.

 

Oh goody, another review! It is great to read what everyone does on their trips! Can't believe you have been and are home again!

I can't believe we're home already, too. I just got home from work and I would love to just be transported on a magic carpet to the sounds of waves and alohas . Oh well, back to reality.

 

I love reading reviews and yours is fabulous....I look forward to the rest of it!! Love the pictures too!!!! Where is Baileys Antiques and Aloha shirts located? Would love to stop there for my DH's shirts.

Thank you for the nice comments. Bailey's is located in Honolulu not far from Diamondhead. Here is their website.

Edited by Sunny AZ Girl

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Well, they are both darling!:) What are their names?

Tex (with the mask) and Daisy.:)

 

Ginny,

 

Thanks so much for starting your review. We will be on POA in Dec and can hardly wait for our cruise. I have been a silent follower for several months reading everything I can get my hands on about Hawaii. I am sure I will have lots of questions to ask you as there will be 7 in our group with ages from 60 to 81. I am trying to find tours and excursions that will not be too active for my mom and I since we both have bad knees. We would like to see as much as we can without walking ourselves to death. I am hoping you will be able to give us tips and recomend tours that might be suitable for us. Also I would love to hear about the must see places since this might be the only time we make it to Hawaii.

 

Can't wait to read more...love your pictures also.

 

Thanks,

 

Sheila

I will be commenting on how someone with mobility issues sees some of the commonly accepted areas. Stay tuned!

 

Ginny - I've been looking forward to your report and am enjoying it like I knew I would. Your pictures are beautiful. I too am waiting patiently for the next installment.

 

Did you watch "Cougar Town" last night? The group went to Hawaii and stayed at Turtle Bay.

 

Donna

Now I would have liked to have seen that! No, I missed it. There are some nice looking young men working there. I wonder how it was for them?:p

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Ginny - I've been looking forward to your report and am enjoying it like I knew I would. Your pictures are beautiful. I too am waiting patiently for the next installment.

 

Did you watch "Cougar Town" last night? The group went to Hawaii and stayed at Turtle Bay.

 

Donna

 

 

I saw a part of Cougar Town last night and noticed right away that they were at Turtle Bay....thought that was so ironic that I had just read Ginny's review and then saw it on tv.....I may be changing my resort....we have two days on Oahu before our cruise in February.....

 

Hope your first day back at work wasn't too tough for you......sitting patiently.....waiting to read more....and I do believe that we will work Byodo into our trip after seeing your photos and reading your review about it....

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Arrival at the Park

 

Today I had planned to return to Honolulu and visit Pearl Harbor. This was to be a day of national pride and remembrance. Our fathers had served in the armed forces. We both were post war babies and had grown up hearing stories about the war on both fronts. WWII movies were shown on TV late nights throughout our teen years. In addition, Steve is a bit of a history buff and is very interested in all things WWII. So, the focus for today was not to be rushed, but to enjoy a little piece of our nation’s story.

 

I knew from my research that this day would have to have an early start to assure a place on the tender to the Arizona Memorial, so I planned it for our first morning in Oahu, figuring that the time change would make it easier to get going early. Just as I had thought, we were up early and ready to go by 6:15. Our maps told us it would be an hour drive to Pearl Harbor by either route, so we chose to drive back down the windward coast so we could experience the H3 highway, a modern engineering marvel through the mountains via an elaborate combination of tunnels and bridges spanning deep valleys. Just as we were leaving the resort we were treated to a beautiful sunrise.

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True to form I had every detail of this trip planned, right down to where we would stop for breakfast in the morning. Not wanting to be delayed with a lengthy resort or restaurant meal I found a McDonald’s in La’ie, near the Polynesian Cultural Center. It was an unusual looking McDonald’s as it had previously been a tiki hut, converted to a restaurant. It certainly had a Hawaiian look from the outside, plus the menu featured some unusual items, not included in the familiar fast food fare found back home. The website said it opened at 5:30 AM, so it would work for us, right? This is where I first discovered the meaning of “island time”. We arrived promptly at 6:30 AM to find the restaurant closed and two local workmen leaning on their truck outside. We asked them if they knew when it would open and the response was “Oh, they should open soon. One person who works here just came in. There were some good waves this morning so the other person is probably surfing!” We waited a few minutes and with no sign of progress we continued on, hoping to find an alternative along the way. Luckily, just before we turned onto the H3 another McDonald’s appeared. This one did not employ surfers. We were able to grab some coffee and a couple of Egg McMuffins and continue on our way. I was not really in the mood for Spam & Eggs anyway.

 

We arrived at Pearl Harbor and found parking easily. We immediately saw several guards patrolling the lots on bicycles. One stopped and talked to us for a few minutes. It was overcast and we were wondering if we should wear our sunglasses. The friendly guard suggested that we do, as it normally starts out cloudy, but clears up as the day goes on. This was good advice. Later, I would wish I had also applies sunscreen at that time as this was the only day I got sunburned!

 

Knowing that no bags of any kind are allowed into the Pearl Harbor area I had left my purse at the resort and only brought my camera. At the last second before leaving I had also thrown my drivers license in my pocket in case I needed to drive. Luckily I had done that as a picture ID is required to board the shuttle to Ford Island where the Missouri is located. I had not known that in advance. Steve had a small camera bag for his small camera, but my camera bag is larger, so it was left in the car trunk. The guard told us that Steve’s small bag would be allowed in and it was, although they did open and inspect it upon entering the park.

 

As we were walking in we marveled at how uncrowded the place appeared to be and we noted the time at 7:55 AM. Just as we entered the park we saw two large tour buses pull in, so we figured our timing was perfect. There was no line for AZ Memorial tickets and we picked ours up quickly. Our tour time was 8:45, so we had 50 minutes to spare. We decide to walk around and get our bearings during that time. There are many outdoor exhibits so keeping occupied was not a problem.

 

We headed over to the Bowfin Memorial. Here we were impressed by the tribute to the many submarines that were lost during the war. Each one had a memorial with the names of the sailors who died when the ship was lost. Sadly, only a few of the memorials listed the crew as being saved.

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During this time we stopped in the gift shop at the Bowfin, where Steve found another Aloha Shirt to add to his collection. This one commemorated Pearl Harbor and was engineered to his satisfaction. We also purchased Bowfin Tour tickets at the gift shop. Be aware that you can purchase Bowfin & Missouri combination tickets at the main ticket booth for a small discount. We did not realize that and so we made an extra contribution to the park.

By now it was time to head over to the theater where we would wait to see the movie about Pearl Harbor before heading over to the Memorial.

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The Arizona Memorial

 

This was the day I was most concerned about due to my surgery a couple of weeks prior and so I had bought a folding cane for support. I knew that there would be long periods of time on my feet here. Luckily, I did find many places to sit to rest and I took advantage of them throughout the day. I also have problems with my knees and going down stairs or walking on uneven ground is often a challenge, so I found the cane to be very beneficial, especially during the first part of our trip.

 

We found the waiting place for the movie without a problem. As I approached the waiting area I saw some benches in the shade and was heading towards them when the Park Officer in charge hurried over and directed me to a place in the front of the line and insisted we wait there. Then, when the doors opened she brought us around to an entrance that did not involve stairs and sat us in the front of the theater. I was quite embarrassed and protested loudly, but she would not take no for an answer. The same thing happened on the tender to the Memorial & on the bus to the Missouri. We were brought directly to the front of the lines along with other people who truly needed the assistance. So, for those of you who have mobility issues, or are with someone with mobility issues there is no problem here. Again, I tried to explain that I was not handicapped, just needed the support and did not want the attention, but Steve was loving it and suggested I always bring along a cane, especially to places like Disney Land!

 

Now, back to the Arizona. We were seated in a theater along with the rest of the people who would be on our tender to the Memorial. The movie began and by the end I was wiping the tears from my eyes. I thought I knew it all, but I really knew so little about what lead up to the attack and the events of the day. The movie was probably about ½ hour long, but I did not time it. After the movie we boarded the tender as a group and headed across the water. The gleaming white memorial was more impressive the closer we got.

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Soon we were standing on her decks straddling, but not resting on, the sunken Arizona. We could see parts of the ship below the water and the small amounts of oil that still leak from her as she cries tears for the many who are still entombed within her below the waves.

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Remember that this place is a memorial and a tomb. Low voices and hats removed are encouraged and appreciated.

 

We were allowed around 15 -20 minutes on the Memorial, which was plenty of time to see it all, when we were ushered as a group to one side to allow the next group to enter. Once they had entered we were directed to board the same tender they had left. As we headed back to the Visitor Center we passed mooring posts symbolizing other ships lost on that fateful day on December 7, 1941.

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The Bowfin & The Missouri

 

After leaving the Arizona we headed over to the Bowfin. I was concerned about access into the Bowfin and was not sure I would be able to go into the submarine. It turned out to not be a problem at all for me. There were a few stairs to descend, but the opening had been enlarged for easier access, so I did not have to go down into a little hatch as I had anticipated. For someone with moderate mobility issues who can go down a few steps and can bend to go through tight spaces this would be an accessible attraction. If you have difficulty with those things this attraction is not for you.

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The Bowfin submarine is also know as the “Pearl Harbor Avenger” as it was launched on Dec.7, 1942, exactly one year to the day after the Pearl Harbor attack. I do not remember how many Japanese ships it sank, but the number was impressive. Going through the ship was a bit of a challenge for me as it consisted of a large number of watertight doors between each section of the ship. I got through them slowly with Steve’s help. There were times I stepped aside to let groups of more nimble visitors pass me. Plus, Steve was fascinated with all the gadgets on board and wanted to take his time. I was ready to be done by the time we reached the end as claustrophobia was beginning to take it’s toll on me.

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Here all the kids are playing with the "toys"

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Then we went over to the shuttle stop for the Missouri and the Pacific Aviation Museum. These attractions are on an active military base and the public is not allowed to drive there themselves. As mentioned before, a picture ID is required for the shuttle, which is also checked at the guard gate.

 

We had lunch at a canteen outside of the Missouri which served hamburgers, hot dogs and assorted cold sandwiches prior to boarding the Missouri. To gain entry to the Missouri you can either go to the forward end of the ship where an elevator will take you to the main deck or take a large flight of stairs up. I was able to take the stairs up, but took the elevator back down. The main deck, where most of the history of the ship is explained is 100% accessible.

 

Once onboard we joined a tour of the main deck which was 35 minutes long and included in the cost of admission. This was very interesting and went form the bow to the stern. We saw the large guns, the surrender deck, where the terms of the WWII surrender were signed, the place where a kamikaze Japanese plane actually hit the decks of the Missouri and much more. Just a quick note here – I climbed a small set of steps up to the surrender deck, thinking, “That wasn’t bad”. Then the guide pointed to the way down – down a ladder, with a sign to hold on with both hands and to go down backwards. Hello! Was I going to spend the rest of my life up here? Then a fellow tourist pointed to a small lift to my left where I could push a button and go back to the main deck sans putting my life (and anyone below me) at risk.

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When we got to the aft of the ship the tour concluded. The guide pointed to a door which would take you to the lower decks of the ship and the crew’s living quarters. I knew that was right up Steve’s alley, so we headed to the door. I was stopped by another downward ladder and no lift. So I sent him down and told him I would meet him at the the other end of the ship. I knew he would be a while as he likes to examine every scew holding the ship together, so I was prepared for a long, boring wait. As I headed to the bow I came upon a door to the interior of the ship with lounge area under the surrender deck. It turned out to be an officer’s lounge with comfortable leather sofas, air conditioning and a video playing which detailed the history of the ship. I made myself at home and only missed the popcorn as I watched the very informative and interesting video. An officer explained to me that people touring the lower deck would exit at this point so it was perfect. Sure enough, after about 20 minutes other people from out tour group began to emerge. 45 minutes later Steve finally surfaced and we headed back down to meet the shuttle. You are also able to tour the elevated bridge areas, but Steve opted not to do that part as even he was getting tired by then and I had seen the entire video.

 

From here we got on the shuttle bus to return to our car. The bus makes a loop and also stops at the Pacific Aviation Museum. We chose to skip that stop as we had other places to go.

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Punchbowl Cemetery, the Dole Plantation & Back to Turtle Bay

 

The next stop on today’s itinerary was the Punchbowl National Cemetery, where so many of our nation’s heroes from WWII and beyond are buried and memorialized. This is a gorgeous area, beautifully landscaped & maintained. If you are driving or are on the Robert’s Stars & Stripes Tour you are allowed to get out and look around. No other tour busus are allowed to do anything but drive through. When we arrived the Robert’s tour was there. We looked around the cemetery and drove up to the large memorial.

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While on the shuttle bus on our way back from Ford Island earlier that day the driver commented that if you are driving to Punchbowl be sure to take the footpath that ascends from the back of the memorial to the top of the crater for one of the best views of Honolulu & Waikiki on the island. We found the wide, paved path after a bit of driving around exactly where he said it would be. We parked not too far from the Robert’s bus and started the walk up. I used my cane and found the walk to not be difficult at all. It was a bit long, but there were many benches along the way and I just took my time. This path would be wheelchair accessible. We saw many plaques dedicated to different branches of the service and with some very poignant messages inscribed.

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I was surprised at the lack of people on this walk. I think only two or three other people were there and it was a very peaceful area. The people on the Robert’s tour probably were not told about this as none of them came that way. However, they had plenty of time as the bus was parked in the same spot throughout our stay Once a the top we were rewarded with a sweeping 360 degree view of the island below, from the shores of Waikiki to the crater in which the Punchbowl Cemetery rests.

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From here we chose to head back to Turtle Bay via the Dole Plantation, through the pineapple fields of the northern part of the island and through Haleiwa. Here we experienced our first and only traffic jam on this vacation on the famous H1 & H2. We were glad when we finally broke free of the rush and arrived at Dole Plantation.

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Even though Dole Plantation has paid venues, such as a large maze, among other things we were there primarily for the Dole Whip! As you will see along this revue, my husband cherishes all things ice cream, along with his Hawaiian shirts. So we arrived and headed straight to the back for a bowl of this famous dessert. It was refreshing and yummy and worth the stop.

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After picking up some cookies and snacks for the next week and my first Hawaiian Christmas ornament we continued on toward Haleiwa where we knew there were reasonably priced restaurants for our evening meal. Arriving there sooner than expected we found we were not yet hungry as the Dole Whip had curbed our appetite. I had plotted out a small restaurant on my Google Map named the Grass Skirt Grill (highly recommended on TA) where we picked up a couple of plate lunches. Steve had coconut shrimp and I got teriyaki beef. This place is just a little hole-in-the-wall place with good food, friendly staff & a sign on the door that read “This isn’t the beach. Wear a shirt and shoes”. I think they had three tables inside and two tables outside and interestingly they closed at 6 PM. It was then 5:40 PM so we took our meals to go and headed back to the resort 15 minutes away where we enjoyed them on our lanai.

 

My brother Bob & his wife Cindy had arrived in Honolulu while we were at Pearl Harbor and even though they were staying at the Aqua Palms and Spa in Waikiki they were coming up to join us the next day for a relaxing day on the North Shore. In an attempt to adapt to Hawaii time we forced ourselves to stay up until the late hour of 9:30 PM. So, to the sounds of waves lapping on the beach we fell asleep. Tomorrow would be another day.

 

Next installment on Monday. Have a great weekend!

 

The rest of my pictures from our Pearl harbor Day are available here. The best way to view them is via the slideshow option. Simply select "slideshow" from the box on the top right. I noticed Webshots royally mixed up my pictures in this album. I will try to organize them later. In the meantime, I hope you are enjoying the review and pictures.

Edited by Sunny AZ Girl

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Thanks, Ginny, for the great review and your beautiful pictures!:) Thoroughly enjoying it and can't wait to read more of your adventures and see more of your beautiful pictures!;)

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"Next installment on Monday. Have a great weekend!"

 

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO......you have us in the palm of your hands with your great review and now we have to wait for MONDAY!

 

sigh...this is gonna be a long weekend

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