September 29, 2008 - Honolulu, Hawaii, United States

 From San Diego we flew into the middle of the pacific Ocean - miles away from anywhere and a further 3 hours behind Ireland (11 hrs behind altogether). We landed in the Island of Oahu in Honolulu. We made our way to the Waikiki area (beach resort) of the city.  Hawaii is an archipelago in the Centre of the Pacific Ocean. It was the 50th state to join the united states of america and probably the only one where the natives weren't completely driven from there land. Its made up of hundreds of islands but there is 8 main islands (Niʻihau, Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Molokaʻi, Lānaʻi, Kahoʻolawe, Maui, and Hawaiʻi). It also has union jack british flag in the top corner of the hawaiian flag - which I was surprised by.

Here we just basically chilled out for a few days going to beach for a swim and to read a book. One of the days I took a walk up to Diamond Head which overlooks Honolulu and has some great views of Waikiki and the surrounding area - Diamond Head itself is a circular crater of an ancient volcano (which isn't that surprising seen as the islands are volcanic islands) and was used by the US military for defence purposes during WWII now its just a tourist attraction and a mildly difficult hike (although from listening to some of the american tourists on the way up you'd think it was an ordeal). Also while we where in Waikiki we met up with Shane's brother Darragh and his girlfriend Stacy from Australia who where there for a weeks holidays. The whole time we where in Waikiki the sea was really calm which was a little disappointing from a surfing point of view.

After staying in Waikiki for a few days we headed up to the North Shore part of the Island which is famous for its surf breaks where it can reach wave heights of 30ft regularly during the months November to January or February (crazy sized waves to say the least!!). I had wanted to come here as i've had two posters in my room since college, one of a Monstrous wave on the North Shore Hawaii and One from Bells Beach Australia.

While we where there though the sea was fairly calm but still there was waves of 4 to 6 ft on some beaches (although they where breaking close to rocks and very close in). We stayed in a Hostel/Beach House in Sharks Cove which was situated between Waimea Bay and Banzai Pipeline/Sunset Beach. Sharks Cove was a great place to go snorkelling which we did a few times while we where there and the waters where teaming with life - with tropical fish, sting rays and turtles although I didn't see the turtles myself - luckily enough though I also didn't see any sharks either - even though there is meant to be tiger sharks in the waters around there and i'm sure the cove got its name for some reason!! After spending a few days in the north shore we headed back to Waikiki for the weekend before leaving.

Then the first major mess up of our travels we mixed up when our flight was leaving for Fiji and mistakenly thought it was the monday night instead of the monday morning (partly thrown by the fact the flight said it arrived tuesday in Nadi airport Fiji due to crossing the international date line but also partly because we had gotten fairly relaxed about travel arrangements and never confirmed the take off time 2 days beforehand as advised). So it was a costly mistake as we had to fork out an extra 500 quid for the two flights onward to Sydney even though we wouldn't be missing the 2nd one from fiji grrrr. It also meant that we only have 2 and 1/2 days in Fiji. The Airline told us it was a common problem that people got this mixed up and we actually met a number of people who had done the same thing - but still felt very stupid for having made the mistake and I will never let that happen again for any flight in the future - I think it was a sign I needed to get back to using my brain again I rekon!


James Kerr:
October 11, 2008
Another nice informative blog.I think the sharks may have got out of the cove while you were swimming in it!! The international dateline does cause problems!
Ciaran Mc Carron:
October 13, 2008
October 13th
Its a pity you didnt get any surfin in hawaii. I'll bet you wont miss out in Australia. Enjoy!
October 14, 2008
Well Ciaran hows things? Yeah I was bit disappointed I didn't get out for a surf in Hawaii yeah, I could have made it out on north shore but the other lads weren't up for it and also there was alot of rocks and reefs that could cut you up if you didn't have any local advice so I give it a miss! Looking forward to getting out in oz though will probably buy a board once i sort out a job
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