Port 2: Honolulu Day 2

Having already toured Pearl Harbour and several other sites on a previous trip to Honolulu, we followed the advice of fellow cruise passengers for our second day in Honolulu and went to the north side of the Island.

City bus passes (for a bargain $5 a pop) took us the scenic route and stops peppered all along the King Kamehameha Highway loop provided lots of opportunities to hop off to explore food trucks, beaches, quaint shopping areas and other landmarks.

We stopped at the Dole Plantation for their famous Pineapple Whip- a touristy move on our part but ever since learning that it was dairy free (the main reason we didn’t try it when we were there in 2014), I’ve wanted to get back. It was very well worth the effort, particularly after a long day in the sun.

another convert to the magical Dole Whip

On our ride back downtown Honolulu and walk back to the ship, we passed numerous murals, many of which were strikingly beautiful.

Jeff’s favourite. It became his tag line for the rest of our time in Hawaii!!

We caught the final seconds of sunset as we slowly moved out from the dock that evening.


We were likely some of the few (only?!) passengers on the ship not to visit Waikiki during our two days in Honolulu. Perhaps next time…. although we’d be hard pressed not to hop the bus or rent a car and head back up to the North Shore to explore more. That shrimp…. well, there are no words for how good it was.


Caught My Eye

Life On Van IslandJeff has worked with a 3D printer for several years and our nephew made national headlines with a 3D printed bike university project– 3D printing has long been a normal topic of conversation for us. But this 3D printed faucet takes things to a new level. Jeff’s mechanical analysis is that it’s not durable long term (as any plastic faucet would not be) but we agree it looks super cool.







Port 2: Honolulu Day 1

Before starting last month’s tour of advent and Christmas music, I shared about our trip to Hawaii in October but only got as far as our first stop on the big Island. As I look out the window from my home office today at dull, grey skies and more rain, it seems like a good time to remember the other stops on our Hawaiian getaway.

After a first day in Hilo, we sailed overnight to Honolulu, arriving just after sunrise on Sunday, October 8. The ship docked next to the Aloha Tower, close to the historic and business districts downtown.

I had done a fair bit of research about what was happening in the city that day and we started with a choral service at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Cathedral. We received the warmest of welcomes and enjoyed the very fine choir and pipe organ (things that truthfully appeal to us more than cocktails at Waikiki).

Incredible wall of stained glass at the Cathedral’s entrance

Our research also came across very high ratings for the Bishop Museum, the designated Hawai’i State Museum of Natural and Cultural history.

replica Polynesian Moai statue on the front lawn of the Bishop Museum

We hopped the city bus downtown and spent a full afternoon taking in the museum,science center and planetarium.

I was always vaguely aware of Polynesian migration patterns but several exhibits in the museum made this incredible history come alive. The planetarium presentation on the Polynesian’s nagvigation by the stars was fascinating- I left the afternoon truly awed by how far and how accurately these brave travelers crossed the Pacific with the most simple of tools and transportation.

Exhibits in the main museum give a great picture of life at different points of Hawaiian history.

Great Hall

I found exhibits on Hawaiian Ali’i (the royal family) particularly interesting. The feathered plumes below, called kahili, were standards used as an honour guard for different Hawaiian kings and queens in the nineteenth century. The primary motivation behind the Bishop Museum’s formation in 1889 was a desire to preserve the Hawaiian royal legacy following the death of Bernice Pauahi Bishop, one of the last members of the House of Kamehameha which ruled from 1794 until 1874 (it was succeeded by the House of Kalākaua which ruled until the kingdom was overthrown and annexed by the United States in 1893).

Kings from the House of Kamehameha wore cloaks made from small feathers as a sign of their power and authority. These cloaks, which each had a distinct pattern specific to its wearer, were astounding seen closeup.

The science center is wonderfully interactive for children- it was very quiet during our walk through and I had great fun with the hot wax lava flow exhibit.

The grounds around the Bishop Museum are full of local flora and fauna that we greatly enjoyed, despite having to duck inside during several afternoon rain showers.


Getting to the Bishop Museum from downtown was fairly simple via city bus and we left with a much greater awareness and appreciation for Hawaiian history. We highly recommend it!

Caught My Eye

Life On Van IslandLooking for a new upholstered bedframe and after scouring hundreds of options, narrowing down the search to something tufted with a slight camelback curve. I like clean and classic, Jeff likes fancy and traditional. Seems like a good compromise.

Because ceiling height is important ... | by @spinnakerdevelopment |

A post shared by Interior Design | Home Decor (@the_real_houses_of_ig) on







New Year

Our December schedule slowed at the same moment snow arrived on Christmas Eve, setting the stage for several relaxed days with free schedules to sleep in and enjoy late, leisurely breakfasts.

Today, life returns to normal with returns to work and the packing up of this year’s Christmas decorations (only the gold, silver and bronze items were brought out this year). And so we begin another year. Hope you had a lovely holiday.