Hawaiian Islands, here we come...

Sunset from the Sky Lounge through the window glass.
By the time this post appears, we’ll be only hours away from a noon arrival in to the island of Oahu in the Hawaiian Islands.

We chose this cruise as a means of transportation for us to get to Hawaii rather than flying. Why not have a place to live with meals prepared, entertainment and every amenities at our fingertips?  Add the opportunity to meet many wonderful people and it sure beats the commotion at the airport.
Another sunset from our balcony.
As a result of that reality, we don’t feel compelled to do what other passengers may be choosing to do with their time, trying to “pack it all in” on a once or twice a year (or more for many) vacation/holiday.

By the time we arrive to our final destination at our vacation home in Waikiki Beach on October 5th, it will have been 35 days since departing Harwich, UK to board Royal Caribbean's Brilliance of the Seas and nine days later on Celebrity's Solstice (which we're on now).  Of those 35 days, we'll have spent 26 days at sea, 3 days in Boston and 6 days in Vancouver.

We love the easy life of cruising, the ability to choose to do exactly that which appeals to us in a time frame we find pleasing.  Although, we’ve stayed busy most days, we’ve also enjoyed quiet time relaxing, visiting with other guests and each other.
Lounges in the Sky Lounge for a catnap, if needed.  We don't ever lay down or nap during the day.  Its a nice thought, just not for us.
Yes, the seas have been rough but, its finally settled down and we barely feel movement of the ship.  Yes, we’ve had constant WiFi issues using the ship’s poor signal but later today, we’ll be able to use our MiFi for a clear signal for the bulk of the remaining days on the ship. 

Yes, we would have liked to sit by the pool but, when people grab all the chairs by 9 am which we’d rather not do, we figured we’ll have plenty of time to sun and fun soon enough. 

Over the remaining six days of the cruise, most passengers will be partaking in  ship sponsored excursions.  Since we’ll have rental cars on Maui, Big Island and Kauai, we’ve decided not to go on the excursions when we can create our own road trips over the many months on the islands.

The Sky Lounge is located on the 14th deck at the bow of the ship, an ideal quiet spot for us while posting.  We've attended a few parties in this area.
We’ve already booked an almost all day private tour to Pearl Harbor in Honolulu, Oahu on October 13th and  surely others will follow.  Oahu, a short 11 day stay is the only island where we won't need a rental car with easy access to most venues and handy bus service outside our door.

That’s not to imply that we haven’t enjoyed many ship organized tours.  We have immensely.  They’re usually well planned, safe and comprehensive.  At times, the prices are reasonable.  But, the 60-people-on-a-bus thing just doesn’t appeal to us. 
An art auction transpired in the Sky Lounge.  Tom's thrilled that we don't own any walls" and can't buy art on cruise ships.
As a result, we’ve resorted to smaller groups tours of the same ship offered sites, often at a lower cost making the small group tours a no-brainer for us.
Over the next several days while most passengers are off the ship on excursions, we’ll be able to find chairs by the pool, relaxing at our leisure, knowing that our upcoming over seven months in Hawaii (10/5/2014 to 5/24/2015) will provide us with sufficient time to do everything we’d like to do, documenting every step along the way.

A photo of a painting at the art auction.
However, we will venture off the ship on our own into the various ports of call for exploration and photo taking, all of which we'll share with our readers over te next several days.

We’ll be back tomorrow morning with not only a better signal but, also some photos we’ll have taken of Honolulu, our first port of call in the islands, where ultimately, we’ll return to disembark on October 5th.

Stay tuned, dear loyal readers, it’s going to get exciting and colorful from here on!

Photo from one year ago today, September 29, 2013:

A year ago, out to dinner in Diani Beach, Kenya.  For details from that date, please click here.


Elizabeth Banks said...

As if it hasn't been 'exciting and colourful' already! You make me laugh Jess! Thank you for persisting with the awful wifi to keep us arm chair travelers up to speed!
Have you packed a grass skirt and practiced your hula dancing? (cheeky of me!!) I know nothing about Hawaii apart from the stereotypical image I allude to above. I look forward to learning more.

Jessica said...

Liz, I chuckling along with you! Very cheeky of you! My grass skirt days are over as well as my hula dancing. But, its rather fun to watch the adorable Hawaiian do the hula. Yes, as soon as we have a better WiFi once we're situated in our vacation homes, we'll b e sharing much information as we to, learn about Hawaii. It should be fun for us to learn about this beautiful place.

Thanks so much, dear Liz, for your comments. We always love hearing from you.

Warmest regards to you and Dave!
Jess & Tom

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