Sunday, July 12, 2009

Going to Hawaii? Do it Hostel Style

Taking a trip to Hawaii doesn't have to cost you a fortune. Especially during these economic times, people are looking to save as much money as they can when they travel. Staying at a hostel is the best way to budget your next trip. Budget hotels can cost $100 USD or more per night. However hostels range in price from about $20 USD per night and around $60 USD for a private room (if available). Why pay a lot for a room in a fancy hotel when you'll be wanting to be outside for majority of your trip? Room doesn't really matter then. Here are some other reasons why you'll want to go to a hostel instead of a hotel.
  • Hostel room cost a lot less so you'll have more spending money on your vacation
  • Great way to meet other people from around the world that have the same interests as you
  • Great information/deals on day trips, sightseeing, surf/hula lessons, etc.
  • Most have free usage of computers, internet, and wi-fi
  • Did I mention how much money you would be saving?

So the next time you plan a trip to Hawaii, try and book a room at a hostel. Here are some recommendations.

  • Waikiki Beachside Hostel
  • Hilo Bay Hostel
  • Paumalu Hale Hostel
  • Koa Wood Hale- Pateys Place
  • The Northshore Hostel

Best Surfing Spots in Hawaii

Here's one thing I have on my 'bucket list' that I really want to do. They say surfing is great, but surfing in Hawaii is like heaven. With it's beautiful beaches, big waves, and hot bodies; Hawaii is a surfing paradise. But just like everywhere else, you have to know where to go. Here's a list of some of the top surfing spots Hawaii has to offer.

  • Ehukai Beach Park (North Shore, Oahu)
  • Laniakea (North Shore, Oahu)
  • Backyards (North Shore, Oahu)
  • Hookipa (Paia, Maui)
  • Honolua (North Shore, Maui)
  • Velzyland (North Shore, Oahu)
  • Hanalei (North Shore, Kauai)
  • Canoes (South Shore, Oahu)

Nothing Like a Hawaiian Sunset

There's nothing as cliche as the saying "beautiful as a Hawaiian sunset". But after my most recent trip I have to say it's absolutely true. Now I have never been one for nature, much less sunsets. But as I was walking on the beach I couldn't help but notice just how beautiful a sunset in Hawaii was compared to others I've seen in the US. Here's a collection of sunsets from Oahu, Molokai, Maui, and Kauai.

Hawaiian Punch Art

My friend sent me this pretty cool picture from artist Kevin Van Aelest. It's some spilled Hawaiian Punch in the shape of the Hawaiian Islands. I guess it's like when people see Jesus in a burnt piece of toast. Only these islands will attract ants.

You can check the rest of Kevin's art- here.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

White "Graffiti" Rocks on the Big Island

When I go to Hawaii I usually hit up Waikiki or Maui. Then a friend suggested that I check out the 'Big Island' of Hawaii and I am so glad that I did. It reminded me of old Hawaii, away from all the tourists and commercialism. I flew into Hilo and took Highway 19 to Kona. The drive to Kona is the most scenic ride that I have ever been on. You drive along the beautiful coast and through some of the most beautiful plants and trees in the world. My favorite part of the drive was the ingenious graffiti that the locals and visitors have decorated the lava fields with. There are close to 20 miles of road filled with graffiti messages spelled out in white coral on the black lava rocks. Every possible message can be seen from anniversaries, birthdays, dedications, and memorials. It's considered bad luck to touch other people's messages so be sure to bring your own white rocks.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Kona Coffee is the Best

I am a coffee addict. I will drink coffee anywhere at any time. So I guess you could say I'm a bit of a coffee snob. That being said, the best coffee I have tasted lies in Kona. It's located in the Big Island of Hawaii in the North and South Kona Districts. The beans are grown and cultivated in the slopes of Mount Hualalai and Mauna Loa. Why is it better here then anywhere else? Well it starts with the weather. Kona's weather is sunny with humid rainy afternoons and cool nights. Another factor is Kona's volcanic enriched soil. Add those two together and you get the perfect coffee bean growing conditions. Be sure when you drink a cup or grab a bag that you get 100% Kona coffee. Often times they sell a Kona blend (with beans from Brasil or Colombia) which is made from only 10% Kona beans.

Oahu's Giovanni’s Shrimp Truck

A place is good when the locals eat there. Giovanni’s Shrimp Truck is a must stop for anyone visiting Oahu. They do only one thing there and they do it well. For your money you get two scoops of rice and 12 pieces of shrimp. The menu includes hot & spicy, shrimp scampi, lemon & butter, and my favorite garlic shrimp. Squeeze a little lemon on the shrimp and rice and you're in heaven. Be sure to bring a sharpie because you can tag your name and message on their truck.