Possibly being the only person in the Mainland United States to have never been to Hawaii, I got my chance last summer, when my husband worked a 6 month stint on the beautiful island of O'ahu. Every day (for 12 days), while waiting for him to return from work, I strapped on my new walking shoes, and with camera in hand, did just that...I was a walkin' fool and, not being able to hit the bricks in Vegas during the summer due to oppressive desert heat, I relished every mile walked.
O'ahu is the third largest, and most populous, of the Hawaiian Islands. The state capital, Honolulu, is located here, as is Waikiki, Pearl Harbor, Diamond Head, and the North Shore, most notably.
44 miles long and 30 miles across (607 square miles), the length of the shoreline is 227 miles.
This is the Waikiki Beach looking from one end, with the hotels - to the other, with the looming Diamond Head volcano...which I also walked!
Peaceful, breezy, friendly, GREEN - I would trade these little beach crabs for our scorpions, any day!
The world-famous neighborhood of Waikiki was once a playground for Hawaiian royalty. Waikiki’s very first hotel, was built on its shores in 1901. Today, Waikiki is Oahu’s main hotel and resort area, and most every room is just two or three blocks away from the sea.
Legendary Hawaiian waterman, Duke Kahanamoku grew up surfing the waves of Waikiki. This Olympic gold medalist in swimming actually taught visitors how to surf at the turn of the century, and was later known as “The father of modern surfing.”
The bronze Duke Kahanamoku Statue has become an iconic symbol of Waikiki, and was never for want of beautiful leis, during my daily jaunts past. The surfboards are actually locked up, overnight, much as you would find bikes being locked up on the mainland - in all actuality, the surboards are probably safer locked there overnight than bikes would be, here, even for a few hours.
Not huge waves while I was there (the biggest are to be found on the North Shore - the opposite side of the island, but it was the wrong time of year for those, also), but I found the beauty and motion of the water to be relaxing enough to want to spend an hour or so, each day, just sitting and breathing it all in.
Sailboats, swells, swimmers, and surfers...SWEET!
And speaking of the surfers (another life sized bronze along the beachfront)...
They came in all sizes - the little girl with the board on top of her head couldn't have been more than 5 or 6, and was heading out with her dad. My concrete pier vantage point proved to be a favorite entry to the waters below, though I cringed each time one of them hurtled off the wall, as the rocks were visible below the water. Yeah, it's one of those "Mom" things, I know...1) Don't go swimming for 30 minutes after eating and, 2) Don't do flips into the water, over rocks - obviously, they'd all done it before.
Young and old, alike...SEE THOSE ROCKS AND CORAL BENEATH THAT LITTLE BOY UP THERE! OH, OH, OH!
More surf jumpers, and one of the "coolest" dogs I will ever see, guarding his owner's gear while soaking up some rays in his Eastons, brah! Sat there by himself, for the entire hour I was there, and never tried to remove the glasses - nor did anyone try to take them from him.
Hope you catch a most excellent wave this week - back next Tuesday with a further look around the island - there's so much to see - in the meantime, HANG LOOSE!