Celebrating Family in Oahu & Maui
There were a number of reasons why almost the entire family decided to go to Hawaii, ie; my wife's parents (Ron & Elaine) were celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary, one of my wife's brothers (Chris) was going to get married, my oldest son & his fiance came to join the festivities, and the rest of us came along in order to help everyone celebrate.
On O‘ahu, the summers are hot, oppressive, and dry; the winters are comfortable and humid; and it is windy and mostly clear year round. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 67°F to 88°F and is rarely below 62°F or above 91°F.Image is the property of the Weather Spark Web Site
Talk about a beautiful setting for a wedding! The Pacific Ocean was just behind the activities, a beautiful hotel was behind us and the weather that day was excellent. In image # 1 we are gathered at the wedding site, waiting for the wedding party to join us.
They had selected a Maui "wedding officiant" and he was dressed in Polynesian attire, which gave the wedding an extra "feeling" in that setting.
Sunrise on the summit of Haleakala
We drove up to the top of Haleakala via the Haleakala Highway (AKA "Crater Road"), to see the sunrise. Considering that road gains 10,000 feet in only 38 miles, it’s believed to be the world’s steepest route from sea level to 10,000 feet. The air is cooler up here at the summit — as much as 30°F lower than sea level.
The tallest peak of Haleakalā ("house of the sun"), at 10,023 feet (3,055 m), is Puʻu ʻUlaʻula (Red Hill). It can be chilly at that height, in fact, the average annual temperature is approximately 50 degrees farenheit.
We are huddled together because it is cold at the top of Haleakala waiting for the sunrise. The plan was to get there prior to sunrise, so we could see the sun come up through the clouds. As you can see in image # 3 we achieved that goal, and the sight of the sun coming up through the clouds was spectacular and made the drive up at that hour of the morning well worth the trip!
FACT: On any given day, the temperatures in the Haleakala National Park can range from a high of 80°F (27°C) in Kīpahulu (coastline near Hana) to a low of 30°F (-1°C) at the summit. In either area clouds and rain can quickly replace warm sunshine.
WARNING: The drive to the summit of Haleakala is 37 miles long comprised of 32 switchbacks, give yourself sufficient time to drive or you could miss the sunrise due to traffic! We left Kihei with more than enough time to get to the summit, then got stuck behind a series of cars that were going very slowly and were lucky to get to the top before sunrise arrived.
NOTE: Do not forget to bring some warm clothing! It is cold at the top!
Maui Coastline from Haleakala Summit
Looking down from Haleakala, when the clouds parted, we were able to see the Maui coastline way below us.
FACT: The summit tops out at 10,023 feet above sea level, but if measured from its base on the ocean floor the summit of Haleakala volcano is approximately 30,000 feet tall!
Sea Life Park
Part of the family visited Sea Life Park Hawaii, others went to various other Oahu destinations.
This is one of the largest banyan trees in the United States. Imported from India and planted in front of the Lahaina Courthouse and Lahaina Harbor on April 24, 1873, this sprawling tree along Front Street is the size of an entire city block and stands more than 60 feet high.
There were four generations of the family present at the wedding, which provided us with a unique opportunity to get most of them posing for pics prior to the wedding.
Dinner took too Long!
Long day, lots of fun, tired Jeremy out and he decided to take a short nap. We had all gotten up very early that day to get ready for the festivities, and Jeremy just ran out of energy! I know that Celeste and I were both tired after such a long day, and we were looking forward to getting back to our rental.
Getting ready to depart on a helicopter tour of Maui from the Maui Kahului Airport. We are going on a Blue Hawaiian Helicopter tour.
The Helicopter tour flying past the western slopes of Haleakala National Park headed towards Hana and the Seven Sacred Pools at Ohe'o.
Arizona Tour Waiting Area
Today was our day to visit Pearl Harbor, but of course you have to wait your turn. Our assigned time to get on the tour boat was a only an hour or so to wait. If you aren't fond of crowds and waiting, this visit is probably not going to be fun for you, however, everyone should see this Memorial at least once in their lifetime.
Inside the Arizona Memorial
The USS Arizona Memorial honors the 1,177 crewmen who died as a result of the attack. The hull is both a tomb for more than 900 sailors who remain within and also serves as an artificial reef providing habitat for marine life. Note that reservations are required to make this visit, learn how to make a reservation for the National Park Service facilitated USS Arizona Memorial Program with recreation.gov
National Memorial Cemetary of the Pacific
These images were taken while at the highest point in the Cemetary, looking back towards Diamond Head & Honolulu.
The National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (informally known as Punchbowl Cemetery) is a national cemetery located at Punchbowl Crater in Honolulu, Hawaii. It serves as a memorial to honor those men and women who served in the United States Armed Forces, and those who have given their lives in doing so. It is administered by the National Cemetery Administration of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Millions of visitors visit the cemetery each year, and it is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Hawaii.
The observation area and parking lot, are just above the Halona Blowhole, giving visitors a good view. The blowhole was created thousands of years ago when molten lava tubes were formed from volcanic eruptions, so what you see now is Ocean water forced into the lava tube by wave action.
Click here to go to their website.
Our Kihei Beach Condo Rental
Our condo selection could not have been better - beautiful beach in one direction and just across the street were some good restaurants. The condo building in the background of image # 1 was where we were staying. Image # 2 gives you a glimpse of an uncrowded beach adjacent to our condo.
Polynesian Cultural Center Grounds
The Polynesian Cultural Center was busy that day! Touristy? Yes of course, but still a very good way to learn a lot about the Pacific Polynesian Culture quickly. If you visit here, you should be aware that it is a very popular place to visit - since it opened its doors in 1963, over 32 million people have visited the center !
Click here to go to the Polynesian Cultural Center website.
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