Oahu Island North

After spending the night on board the ship, we waited on the pier for “Surfer Joe” to take us on a tour of the Northern area of Oahu Island. We were beginning the 2nd cruise of our world trip which would take us from Honolulu to Sydney, Australia.

Folded mountainsFolded mountains on the road

The ship was remaining in Honolulu for another day to allow passengers who had arrived on Saturday to have time to see the city and the island. Joe duly arrived and we headed up the coast to visit the Green World Coffee Plantation and factory. There are 7 acres of coffee trees the beans from which had been harvested over the past month. The aroma inside the building which houses both the factory and the shop was decadent. They make a number of different flavours and strengths and we were able to try a few. I am not a fan of flavoured coffee but some of these were really good. The shop included a small café and a pottery section as well as the coffees for sale. We met 2 young ladies who worked there who were both wives of US Army personnel who were stationed at Pearl Harbour for 2-3 years.

Coffee Farm signSign at the entrance to the plantation

On our way to the Dole Pineapple Plantation we stopped briefly at a Walnut Farm but, as they were spraying the pruned trees after harvesting, we had to turn back. A short while later we arrived at Dole Plantation and it was an incredible place. The fields where the pineapples grew were across the road but this was a shop and demonstration setup. Not only were there pineapples and products made from them there were clothes, jewellery, coffee and chocolate on sale.

Dole Pineapple PlantationEntrance to Dole Plantation Farm founded in 1908

Demo areasAreas where the making of chocolate and pineapple products ate demonstrated

Plantation gardenPart of the beautifully laid out gardens; mainly Bromeliads

As we entered the building we were given a key and directed to the Maui Jewellery counter where there was a ‘treasure chest’ with a padlock. If your key opened the lock you could select an oyster for a prize. Trevor tried unsuccessfully and then it was my turn. Very sceptical and not expecting anything, the key turned and then I was allowed to choose my oyster. Inside was a perfect black pearl. The Sales Assistant was very pushy and wanted me to have it set immediately, for a couple of thousand dollars!! Fortunately Joe was there and he said that I must keep it, take it home and get it done here when I have had time to think about it. I don’t think that we were too popular.

Pearl wonThe perfect small Black Pearl that I won 

Our next stop was an old sugar mill now converted to shops and a soap factory. Sugar cane used to be the main crop on the island but due to the reduction in sugar consumption it, like here, has been significantly reduced. The main shop was very large and sold everything under the sun, all made in China. There was a Surf Shop which made surf boards and sold all the necessary paraphernalia that went with them. Joe stayed there the whole time that we were there. At the soap factory, which had been the sugar container, we were able to see how they make and wrap the large variety of soaps that they make. A very interesting process and we learnt that it takes a full 7 days to make a bar of soap. We left there with 4 small samples of different smelling soaps.

Former Sugar Mill Soap FactoryFormer sugar warehouse which is now a soap factory

Soap Samples 2Small soap samples we were given

Our drive now took us through some beautiful scenery as we continued north to the great surfing beaches of Hawai’i. We passed through a town where there were more surf shops than houses, I think, and crossed over a river which is very popular with locals for sailing. As it was Sunday it was pretty busy.

At the very Northern tip of the island is a very popular beach for both swimming and surfing. One becomes very aware of the volcanic nature of the island on the beaches as there are volcanic rocks all around. Placed against a tree was a ‘man’ made of cloth and other items to look just a like a young surfer who had died about 2 weeks earlier. It was a little eerie in that many of his friends had hung jewellery, sticks woven together, string and other items on him. There was a notice requesting no touching and no photos out of respect.

Round volcanic rocksSmooth round volcanic rocks on the beach

We now turned south and travelled back to our ship along the Eastern shore. All the way down were electricity cables which hung almost to the ground and people walked past them without the slightest concern. We passed a couple of wind farms each with half a dozen windmills. We stopped at Hawai’i’s top surfing beach, Banzai Pipeline, briefly but it was not the season for the very large waves.

Wind Farm 2Wind Farm with very low electricity wires

Main surfing beach 4Benzai Pipeline Beach; just wavelets at this time of year

As we headed down the coast Joe said that he had something really special to show us and turned off the road to the right. We drove about a mile along a dirt road and all we could see were the tops of mountains. Suddenly, as we rounded a corner, the most beautiful vista was opened up and it was the place where the film Jurassic Park was filmed. Absolutely stunning it was.

Ent to Jurassic Park siteEntrance to the Jurassic Park Filming siteJurassic Park filming site

Jurassic Park filming site

Jurassic site with Monkeypod TreesJurassic filming site with large Monkepod Tree

Not long after we re-entered the Honolulu precinct Joe, drove us into the public area from where we could see the USS Arizona Memorial in the harbour but it had to be closed to as after it began to, collapse. On the quay were models of 2 rockets used by NASA and are now redundant.

Pearl Harbour and USS Arizona Monument 3USS Arizona Monument at Pearl Harbour

Pearl Harbour and rockets 22 rockets at Pearl Harbour

We had to be back on board by 16:30 to take part in the compulsory safety activity and at 18:00 the ship sailed overnight to a second port in Hawai’i, Kona which is on the Big Island.

Volcanic formations on mountainMist on the mountain

About Me

I was born into the early part of the Baby Boomer generation, the 3rd of what came to be a family of 6 daughters. Although both our parents, who are now deceased, had been raised in rural Natal (now KwaZulu-Natal) and the 2 eldest daughters were born in a country town, the other 4 of us were all born at home in Durban. Read More

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