Our trip to the Big Island of Hawaii

gardeningmaryFebruary 26, 2006

Aloha

As we approached the island I looked out of the plane window see a pod of whales hugging the shore line, breaching and spouting water. I knew it was going to be a magical place. The hotel was lovely with an open island feel. A series of connected pools with wateralls, jacuzzis, and a huge waterslide were a dream come true for the children.

Here was one of my favorite views!

The hotel had worked with marine biologists using lights to attract Mantra Rays and at night you could watch the huge creatures come to feed on the brine shrimp.

In addition to the fantastic snorkelling, Annie and David had introduction Scuba lessons. They said being able to breath underwater was a real thrill. I found flapping about on the surface more my speed!

At the weekend we drove from the sunny, dry side of the Island to the lush, rainy east. We spent the night in a little cottage in the rain forest surrounded by the sounds of birds and the jungle.

Here are the lovely Akaka falls

The Hawaiian Tropical Gardens were out of this world. The lush growth and unusual blooms were spectacular. The orchid gals would have gone crazy!

David was fascinated by the Heliconia Longissima.

The following day we spent at Volcano National Park - an amazing place. Here are a pair of endangered Nene, the Hawaiin goose on the edge of a Kilauea crater. The steam vents are an indication the Volcano is far from extinct.

We hiked along the shore where from a distance you could see lava entering the ocean forming the large plume of steam. We stayed till dark to see the lava glowing red - what an experience!

Back at the hotel we spent the rest of the week exploring beaches, historic sites, coffee farms and orchid growers.

We enjoyed all variety of local fruit from a nearby fruit stand. One of our favorites were Rhambutan - inside the lovely exterior is a delicous fleshy interior surrounding two large pips - yummy!

Just a little taste of all we experienced but I'll end here before the thread becomes too cumbersome.

Mary

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Monique z6a CT(6a CT)

Beautiful photos Mary! Glad you and your family had a great time. I'm with you, I'd rather snorkel than scuba dive-I can't even snorkel well-hubby makes fun of me b/c I cannot flap my feet and have to rely on moving my arms to swim around. Love the flower closeups and the waterfalls! Did you eat any guava? That was my favorite in Hawaii-yum. Must have been amazing to see the red lava-what an experience.

Aloha!
Monique

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 11:38AM
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babs_clare

THANKS Mary! What breathtaking scenes and I imagine they were even more so in person. Cute tootsies; ) The stay in the rainforest must have been heavenly...did you hear the treefrogs? On PBS there was a segment about an overpopulation of a certain introduced treefrog and how deafening their collective voices are and if you can imagine,they are considered pests... How lucky Annie and David are scuba divers! I'd be most likely flopping around snorkeling too lol.
I can't stop scrolling back to look at the details. What size were those fern fronds-they look as if they are large or is that a macro shot? Thanks so much for sharing your trip with us. Such a well deserved break for your whole family. Welcome back....sorry it's not as warm as the islands!

~Babs

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 12:03PM
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taryn(S Ontario Z6B)

Mary, thank you for sharing your Hawaiian experience with us! Great pics, and it sounds like you all had a fantastic time, as I knew you would. Makes it doubly precious to have such a tropical escape in the middle of winter and also that your DH won the trip! How great is that? Thanks again for sharing these wonderful images, and welcome back!

Taryn

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 12:36PM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Oh, oh, oh, oh, oh..... more, more, more, more!!!! Mary!!! I absolutely adore every one of these photographs. How fabu-fabu. Looks like you guys had a wonderful vacation.

I'm talking to Doug as I write this and telling him we NEED to go back there.

Deanne

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 1:03PM
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michelle_zone4

Mary, what fabulous photos. The Rhambutan are just the coolest. Thanks for sharing your memorable vacation with us.

Michelle

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 2:56PM
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martieinct

Oh, Mary!! I've never been to Hawaii but feel like a got a great tour! Just looking at your pics is a "warmer" on a day as cold as today.

Beautiful! Congrats again to your DH for being a wonderful photographer.

Martie

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 3:24PM
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Marian_2(Z6 ARKozarks)

Fantastic! What more can I say ? except more...more !

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 4:08PM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

Oooh-la-la, Mary! I think it may be time for me to start putting my foot down on these winter vacations to cold places and head for these warm, tropical paradises instead. Thanks for the glimpses.

Sue

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 7:39PM
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triple_creek(z5)

Mary, how neat to be able to travel to Hawaii through the eyes of a friend. The scale of the waterfall and the plants where David is standing is awesome. It is all so extraodrinary. You have put a personal touch to a far away place for me. While the flowers are very pretty I am drawn to the carving amongst the rocks. Wondering who might have carved that. Oh duh, it just sunk in. That is a bum shot. LOL Norma

    Bookmark   February 26, 2006 at 9:26PM
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chloehoover(z6b VA)

This is about as close to Hawaii as I'll ever get!! Thanks for thinking of us - truly a "paradise" -- wow!! I like your favorite view too!!

-Cindy

    Bookmark   February 27, 2006 at 4:26PM
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lmcilhargie

Oh Mary, it looks like you all had such a great time. And I can tell you were thinking of us. These pictures include all the Idylls favorite things: bum shot, pedicure shot, lots of beautiful flowers and even a couple of the local birds. I looked up the Nene, I didn't realize they were the state bird. And to top it off you even gave us a glimpse of both Annie and David enjoying their vacation. Thanks, I really enjoyed seeing these and I'm so glad you had a wonderful vacation.

Eden

    Bookmark   February 27, 2006 at 4:40PM
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gardeningmary

Thanks everyone. Congratulations Norma on spotting the bum shot!

Babs, the stems of the unfurling fronds were about 3 inches in diameter. To give an idea of scale the leaf at the bottom was the size of a large canna leaf. The forest had a very primeval feel - I kept expecting a dinosaur to come crashing through the undergrowth!

Mary

    Bookmark   February 27, 2006 at 4:53PM
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just_t

Mary, the pictures are spectacular! I noticed the bum shot immediately and wondered about it's origins......please tell the story behind (snicker) that one.

Thank you for sharing a bit of your vacation. DH has no desire to ever visit Hawaii, so photos may be my only glimpse of it....I am thrilled to see the beauty of the islands through other's eyes & lenses.

T.

    Bookmark   February 27, 2006 at 6:20PM
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Full_Bloom(z5 IL)

LOL Mary...I see you managed to get a bum shot! The vacation sounds wonderful and the pictures are gorgeous! You always seem to make the most out of your vacations...soaking in all the local culture. How cool is that Rhambutan? I've never seen or heard of anything like that and I think it's rather beautiful! I like the pic and the smile on Davids face standing next to the giant Heliconia. GORGEOUS pics...Thanks for the virtual tour! Ei

    Bookmark   February 28, 2006 at 12:32AM
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vtskiers(z6a CentralCT)

I must really be falling down on the job lately-that bum shot went right over my head...lol. In fact, I had to go back and look after all the comments.

Sue

    Bookmark   February 28, 2006 at 8:03AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

So Mary, I'm enjoying these pics again and was hoping you had a few more for us? Yes that bum shot is a hoot!

Deanne

    Bookmark   March 3, 2006 at 11:14AM
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