Thursday, we started off on the Big Island (Kona) at the beautiful Hilton Waikoloa Resort that has a tram and boat that takes us to different sections of the hotel. We had an early start the next morning with a big breakfast, and headed out on our tour where our extremely knowledgeable bus driver enlightened us about some interesting facts about the Big Island, including telling us about where many celebrities’ homes are. As we passed by the doors of these celebrities (Bill Gates, Cher, Tiger Woods, and Michael Jordan) the kids were enamored. We made a quick pit-stop at the Coffee Plantation where Mia, Michelle, Ethan, and Jared enjoyed sampling the different types of local blends. However, Carly found one of the teas to be quite pungent.
Next, we visited the Black Sands beach where we watched the beautiful, large waves crash onto the shore. Daniel, Tyler, Katie, Noah B, and Jacob took really nice pictures of the water and Lily and Lexi took marvelous “selfies”.
We hopped back onto the bus and made our way to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, where we saw a large caldera that extended over 1 mile in diameter! The caldera was so deep that we were still able to see smoke coming out of the volcano! Aliah, Shai, Brant, Samo, and Megan took artistic pictures in front and of the volcano.
After Volcanoes National Park, we walked through a lava tube, which is a cave that was made naturally out of cool lava! Jillian, Ariel, and Alex H. were fascinated by being able to walk through a cave that was once burning hot lava. Our last stop was Rainbow Falls Lookout to see a mystical waterfall surrounded by beautiful trees.
The following day was a chill morning at the resort. Our Trip Members had a nice opportunity to catch up on some sleep this morning. Dylan, Maya, Brant, Jacob, Noah L., Tyler, along with many others woke up early to join us for a nice, big breakfast before the others woke up. Michelle and Caity went for a beautiful summer dip in the clear water of the lagoon. Sam S., Alex H., and Jillian enjoyed the calm waters too.
We then boarded our plane to Kauai – the Garden Isle! Stepping off the plane, we were amazed by the marvelous sights of the lush green mountains and tropical trees. After checking into the hotel – complete with a waterfall and grotto – we headed off for dinner followed by bowling. Did you know some of your teens are expert bowlers? It’s time for them to join the varsity team. Noah L got lucky with his first bowl as a strike. Jacob, Noah B, and Stephen created a team uniform with matching shorts. Alex D attempted some backwards bowling. Dani R tried hard to avoid knocking down any pins and was thrilled her results. The energy in the room was electric.
The next day we were lucky enough to have the opportunity to explore the inner part of our host island. On our way to the activity, Jacob serenaded us with his new song that he wrote called “Hope.” Samo and Brant attempted “Name That Tune” and hummed Bruno Mars, Fun and Justin Bieber, trying to get their teammates to guess the song. But it was Stephen who stole the show by rapping a little Kanye West for the group. We then boarded a boat down the main river described as the spinal cord of the island. The ride was a true cultural experience with Hawiian music and dancing. Annabel, Leah H and Leah K were stunned by the beauty and grace of the performers. Jared and Ethan joined in on the short hula lesson, tapping their feet and following every move. Dani B, Tyler and Sari danced and laughed along with the rest of the group. We finally arrived at our destination, the breathtaking Fern Grottos.
For dinner, we were off to Hanalei Bay. On the drive over, we learned about all the famous movies that were shot on the island. The sight from the pier at Hanalei Bay made everyone appreciate how amazing Hawaii really is. Brant said it was the best moment of the trip. We ended this amazing day by finding a local ice cream shop before heading back to the hotel to pack up for Maui.
We’ll fill you in on our Maui visit soon – take care until then!
The Westcoast Blogger
Do you want to be part of this experience? Visit Hawaiian islands and Canadian west coast in our 21-day Hawaii Spirit tour.