Day four of a vacation. The day you start to feel that you really are on a vacation. But our day four was a day of packing up...packing up and heading out to visit the western side of the Island of Hawaii for the remainder of our trip.
Bill of course had to get in his morning snorkel out the back door with the kids. Hailey of course didn't want to leave. The sea turtles were just too big of a draw for her. By now we had sort of gotten used to the idiosyncrasies of the place we were staying but couldn't help snap a few photos...just for memory's sake. I guess I will miss the pineapples growing right outside the door though.
Yes, the house had character...
and it's own resident lizard.
But off we headed up the road and across the island. Our guide book gave us the impression that the big island was full of diverse landscapes. They weren't kidding. Leaving the dense jungle we passed through lava deserts, scrub forests that looked like Australia, reached the summit of the pass and thought we were back in Oregon on tbe eastern side with pine trees, chickadees, and a desert appearance.
We turned south on our cutoff road admiring the first real sign of a mega resort along the coast line. Our destination was Kona quite a ways down the coast and check-in wasn't until 4 pm so we turned off at a state park beach sign for some sand time. Well...there was sand at the end of the road...after a mile and a half lava road that I am pretty sure would have been in violation of our rental car agreement. But there after a jaunt down more lava paths, there was white sand and aqua water. Everyone tried a little more snorkeling but the wind was picking up and the water turned choppy.
Back on the road and headed south. But the trouble was our GPS wouldn't bring up the name of our resort in the area we were are, so next was a phone call to the vacation rental company to get exact directions...we forgot to print them out before we left Oregon. After considerable laughing I'm sure by the individual on the other end of the phone, we found out that Kolea Resort was actually back at the 'mega' resort in Waikoloa which we saw when first turning off of the road. Oops. So we turned around and headed north.
Upon turning into the area and drove down the palm-lined road, we looked for signs for our resort only to get to the far end of the developed area without finding it. It really shouldn't have been that hard. The shops and landscaping and overall ambiance were just what the kids were expecting of Hawaii. No disappointment here. Backtracking we made our way back to the gated entrance which of course we had missed as we were gawking out the other side of the window at the waterfall and river that ran through the area. And then the fun began trying to key enter the access code. We were certainly having our troubles. But moving along...we found the unit, unlocked the door, and listened to the gasps. Gorgeous place. Couldn't ask for better.
After unloading we trucked on down to see the pool and beach area only to be greeted by more beached sea turtles. Too cool. Alas, but time to head up the road to what was reported to be the least expensive grocery store to locate some food for dinner. With milk about $8 a gallon, that was important. Of course determining dinner arrangements with six very unopinionated-at-the-moment family members, we settled on frozen pizza and some salad. Yep a few days of groceries cost us about the same as what I would spend for a week back home.
After dinner it was time to check out the beach again. It's amazing to be outside...at night...light breeze blowing...and try as hard as you can to feel just even a tiny bit chilly...and realize that no, you are perfectly comfortable. The ideal weather. I wonder if people that live here eventually take their paradise surroundings for granted. I imagine it would take me a long time to do that.
Links to other posts in this series: