Honolulu Travel Blog

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After leaving Oahu, it was on to Maui, where I blew the rent (and then some) at the Ritz-Carlton.  It was worth every penny, but I'm still reeling over the bill . . . so it's too painful to talk about now!  : -)  I'll come back to it later.

Besides, what emerged as my favorite spot on Maui was the town of Lahaina.   Compared to Honolulu, it's almost sleepy -- but it has its share of nightlife and and commerce.  To me, it has a nice feel of 'authentic Hawaiian-ness' and tourism.  It's renowned for its surfing ,which I'm too clumsy to do, but it sure is fun to watch!  Pull up a barstool at Margaritaville (no kidding, that's the name), chat with the oh-so-friendly bartenders, and watch those surfing daredevils roll in.   

By far, my favorite attraction is Lahaina's world-famous  Banyan Tree, which is worth the trip alone.   is worth the trip alone.  This thing covers an entire city block!  Makes for a great photo op.

We stayed at The Plantation Inn; which initially gave me pause: They're very much a B&B 'style' inn, and I'm not a big B&B fan (I never feel like I have enough privacy).  But their rooms are completely soundproof!  The innkeepers were gracious, but not nosy (another pet peeve of mine at B & B's).   Here are some more of my Lahaina hotel picks

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No matter how many times I visit Hawaii, no trip is complete without a visit to Hanauma Bay.  The big draws are the natural beauty and the dazzling array of marine life, of course; but the last time I was there it was a celebrity that got our attention:

As we were returning our snorkeling equipment (you can rent it there), the friend I was traveling with grabbed my arm and whispered, "Look! It's Carol Channing!"  I didn't see her, and promptly concluded my friend was crazed from too much sun, because everyone knows that Carol Channing has been for years, right?

Back at our hotel that night, (the fabled "Pink Palace",) we were breathing in the night-blooming jasmine and taking in the hotel's art when we literally bumped right into none other than you-know-who.  Needless to say, rumors of her demise are greatly exaggerated, as Ms. Channing was in town to perform at a local bar.  She was beyond gracious, and even offered us an autograph without prompting.  We didn't have any paper handy, so she signed my friend's shirt!  The shirt, along with the autograph, are now preserved for eternity in a shadow box.

These are the kinds of things that make Hawaii so much fun for me.  The celebrity-sighting was al, of course; but the funsy sorts of activities are what keep me going back.  Here's a list of some of my fave things to do in Honolulu.  Kango also lists their own picks for hotels--   two of which I've stayed in:  The Halekulani and the aforementioned Royal Hawaiian/"Pink Palace."  The Halekulani is decidedly more luxe, but I find the Royal Hawaiian to be more fun, and it's roughly half the price.  What's more, it's where Carol Channing stays!


photo by: crystalware