It’s officially been two months since we moved to Oahu, and so far, it has been nothing short of amazing. Island life has been easy to adjust to; everyone is so relaxed, exuding good energy and positive vibes. There are constant activities going on, and the island feels like a giant playground where I’ve only just scratched the surface.
One would think that after a couple months, I would have gotten used to the sunshine. But, with the winter season bringing spouts of stormy days and rainy winds, I find myself still appreciating every minute of glorious sun! I never realized how much sunny weather can affect my mood, but the climate here has left me feeling happier and more energized with every passing day.
Of course, living here is very different from a vacation. We arrived with just a couple suitcases, a tight budget, and no mode of transportation. But, we were able to get mopeds within the first week and have managed to get around most of the island just using those. Most of our days are filled with lounging on the beach, getting out on hikes, and exploring the local shops; trying to take advantage of as much sunshine as we can while we are here.
My favorite beach so far is Lanikai, located on the windward side of the island. The sand is so soft and water such a beautiful, turquoise blue. Plus, Pillbox Hike is only a couple blocks away with amazing views to the beach and beyond. But, the beach I probably visit the most is Ala Moana Beach Park. Just a little further up the coast than Waikiki, this shore is much less packed with a swimming area sheltered by the coral reef, perfect for paddle boarding or lap swimming.
It’s also close to my favorite area to hang out and do work, SALT at Kaka’ako. Considered the art district of the island, the neighborhood is filled with beautiful murals and there are always events lined up to take place. I love to get a lavender latte from Arvo when I’m passing through, or an iced coconut latte from Morning Brew if I’m settling in.
Another awesome coffee spot is Morning Glass, on the way to Manoa Falls hike. This cute shop has yummy breakfast goods and delicious coffee to power up before the hike. The hike itself is one of the most popular on the island, so be prepared for a crowded trail. There’s a reason it’s crowded though as you explore through an abundance of jungle foliage to end at a beautiful, tall waterfall with a small pool at the base. You’re technically not allowed to get close to the waterfall due to the many slippery rocks and mud surrounding it…but who likes following the rules anyway?
A slightly easier, but also frequently visited hike on the island is the Makapu’u Point Lighthouse Trail. Now paved, the beautiful views are easily accessible to everyone. It’s still a bit of a climb though at 3.2 mi in length, so make sure you come prepared. It’s well worth the venture as the entire hike is filled with amazing views where you can spot pods of humpback whales as they migrate through the islands! We saw at least four or five pods on our hike, all extremely active, spouting and jumping as they went along. I was very happy to have brought our camera so we could zoom in on the whales as they swam by.
There are also some beautiful tidepools you can swim in about halfway through the hike. They’re located at the base of the cliff, so it’s a bit of a journey off the trail and down the rocky edge if you want to get to them. It’s well worth it though as the pools are filled with tons of tropical fish and deep enough to swim around in. We came on a windy day, so the waves were crashing hard into the rocks, flooding into the pools and spouting high into the sky through the blow holes. Being the first time for me, I was a little scared and uneasy around the big waves and kept mostly to the innermost pool. But I will definitely be exploring again come summertime.
While I’ve crossed off many of the things I’ve wanted to do while being here, there is still a long list of activities I want to accomplish. Which is why I am excited to say that we have decided to extend our island life a little longer than anticipated! Originally, we were only going to be here a few months until our Philippines trip (coming up in May). But, following some wonderful opportunities, we have decided to stay at least until the end of the year! This gives me a little more time to complete my bucket list, and a lot more time to work on my tan. I look forward to posting more updates along the way!
I will see you,
bye and bye