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Aloha! I’m continuing on my tales from my Hawaii adventures. You can read part one here, and part two as well. Happy reading.

The last time we traveled to Hawaii {in 2014} we based ourselves in Ko’Olina, and the visited Waikiki and the North Shore briefly. This time we stayed in Ko’Olina again, and then ventured to Waikiki for a few nights as well. Having experienced both, I would do both but I’d finish at Aulani for that ultimate relaxin’ feels. As you’ll see as I write about our experience in Waikiki, you’ll see that I loved Waikiki… but I think the balance of Aulani at the end would make for the ultimate getaway. Next when we travel for holidays {not work} we’ll be doing it that way – two weeks with some time in Waikiki and then finishing in Aulani. I hope that makes sense!


We spent our last morning soaking up as much of Aulani Resort as possible. We kinda didn’t want to leave AT ALL, and we stayed until we had no room and had to move on. Yeah, we were those people. Those people not wanting to leave the lazy river. That was us.

Eventually we grabbed a taxi and headed south to Waikiki, to the Royal Hawaiian Hotel. You’ve probably seen photos before, it’s the iconic pink palace right on the beach.


The Royal Hawaiian is beautiful. It’s grand, and beautiful, and really photograph-able. As a lover of pink, I was in heaven. Our room was really large, with a closet that was almost as big as a bedroom. I love space when traveling, so it was nice to have room to sort our bags, store the pram and then relax as well. We were greeted with a pink cake on arrival, which is always good. It was delicious. You know me, cake-lover and all! Each guest gets yummy banana bread on arrival. It’s also about the sweets!


After unpacking as much as we could, we headed out to explore Waikiki, firstly stopping for an early dinner at The Cheesecake Factory. I had the bistro shrimp pasta which was delicious, and it quickly became the kids’ favourite spot to eat.

After dinner, we walked along the beach and stopped to watch the sunset.


The sunsets in Hawaii are something else, everyone stops and gives the sun a standing ovation as it makes it’s way down and the night sets in. It’s pretty magical. I love the salute to the sun each day.


In some sort of irony, Shane and I had said to each other that we didn’t come to Hawaii to shop… so we wouldn’t. But then we realised we needed a new suitcase {ours got smashed on the flight over – it was brand new!} and I broke my thongs {flip flops / slippers} the week before so we needed to go and replace those, so we headed over to Ala Moana to do those things. Hawaii has some really great outlets stores, but because they were a drive away we decided to go to Ala Moana first… you know, for an hour or two.

First we had breakfast at Eggs N Things.


And then we shopped. Well I bought a pair of shoes, and Hubby bought a gazillion hats and t-shirts. Ala Moana had a few updates since we last visited. There’s a beautiful little Japanese Food Area downstairs that is delicious. There was also a huge Foodland opening while we were there. I definitely recommend trying out the Shirokiya Japan Village Walk if you visit. Yum!

There’s also a Magnolia Bakery, just like New York, and you MUST try the banana pudding. So so so so good.


We then swam in the ocean and chilled on the beach. Bliss.


After a day of shopping the day before, we were really looking forward to having a day on the beach. We rented an umbrella out the front of the Royal Hawaiian because a lady needs shade. August is still summer for Hawaii, so quite hot and humid, and it’s also school holidays. I loved the heat, but I needed a little time out from it throughout the day as well. Last time we visited was in October and it was much quieter, which I loved, but it was also a little cooler and the water temps weren’t as perfect. I think we’ll aim for September next year because it might be the jackpot.


The water in the beach is beautiful, and the waves are small… so you can get a floaty and just chill out the back of the beach.


We then popped back to the Royal Hawaiian for lunch at the Surf Lanai, and a sneaky Mai Tai {me} and Pina Colada {Hubby}. The menu at Surf Lanai is nice and light, which I felt was a welcomed break from the food we were finding on other menus at Waikiki.


We finished the day with more swimming in the ocean, and a dip in the pool. The Royal Hawaiian pool is small, but enough for a quick dip. The good thing is you have access to the pool at the Sheraton next door {I’ll be sharing more on that later} which has great slides, and even has an adults only infinity pool. I loved the location of the Royal Hawaiian and how grand it was, and how special it felt.


We headed next door to PF Changs for dinner, which was actually really yummy. The kids love dumplings or gyozas so there were very happy campers.

In the interest of being completely transparent, we stayed at the Royal Hawaiian using media rates {discounted accommodation} during our stay. All thoughts are my own, of course.