Saturday, October 3, 2009

A little tour of Oahu

Well, I'm getting towards the end of this now...we're on the last full day in Hawaii. There were so many things to do and see in Oahu, and I haven't even scratched the surface. If (when?) we come back to Hawaii someday, I will have to come back to Oahu to see more of the historic and cultural sites that aren't going to fit on this trip.

So for our last day, we decide on a driving tour of the southeast corner of the island. I've heard the scenery around here is really beautiful. So we set out from Waikiki, headed towards Diamond Head. There's some really nice residential neighborhoods, with gorgeous multi-million dollar houses. When we drive on the road below Diamond head, we can look up and see the overlook. (We did not chose to climb up to Diamond head ourselves. Its been incredibly hot and humid, and I'm just not up to the climb in this weather)

After passing Diamond Head, the coast gets even more beautiful. We stop a few times at overlooks and admire the scenery. Mostly we are just enjoying the sun, the convertible and driving around

I believe thisis Makapu'u Beach

This is near the fisherman's shrine, and I think hidden in this cove is the "From Here to Eternity" beach, where the famous love scene was filmed

We stopped for lunch in the town of Kailua. I really wanted to go to Boots'n'Kimo's, which is a well known local diner type place, but there was a crowd of people standing around on the sidewalk waiting to get in. So we stopped at wine bar called Fromaggio Grill. The food here was quite good, they had salads, sandwiches and pizzas.

After Kailua, we took a drive further north to get to the Valley of the Temples, where we stopped to see the Buddhist temple called Kyodo-In, which was modelled after a 950 year old temple in Japan. It's very beautiful, and would be serene if not for all the tourists who feel the need to ring the welcoming bell over, and over, and over again. Of course, we rang the bell too (and I have pictures of Todd doing it, but in the low light, I didn't get any very good shots :()

In anycase, here is the temple:

And this is the view from the Valley of the Temples (which has a number of churches and burial grounds) looking out towards the mountains

We take the H3 back to Honolulu because this is a marvelous highway that cuts through the mountains, using tunnels, and roads up high on trestles. Its gorgeous (but there are no stops along the way, so no pictures). And we get back to Waikiki much faster than the drive out. We have time for a swim before dinner, and then we head to Roy's for our last dinner in Hawaii.

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