Part 1: Getting There
Part 2: Hiking Diamond Head Crater
Part 3: First Day at Aulani
Part 4: Tuesday in Hawaii (Girls Version)
Part 5: Tuesday in Hawaii (Boys Version)
Part 6: Dole Plantation and the North Shore
Part 7: Out to Sea
Part 8: Friday at Aulani
Part 9: Kualoa Ranch
Saturday, March 14, 2015
We had to leave Aulani at 7:45 a.m. to make it to Kualoa Ranch by 8:45 a.m., 30 minutes before our first activity. Of course, this is the only day we slept past 5:30. We woke up around 6:30 and had to rush to get breakfast and get everything packed and pick up our car from the valet. But we made it, and drove down the H1 highway to the H3 highway. The H3 highway goes through this mountain and then it is like a highway on stilts until it gets to the east coast of Hawaii:
|Photo by Scott Sharick|
We made it to Kualoa Ranch around 8:45 a.m. When I was researching activities on Oahu and came across Kualoa Ranch, I knew we had to go here. It is stunning.
so many activities--movie sites tour, jungle tour, ATV riding, horseback riding, boat rides, zip lines...I debated for months about what we should do. I was tempted to buy a full day pass here so that we could do 4 activities, but I couldn't decide if that would be too much for the kids. In the end, we decided that Brian would do a 2-hour ATV tour while I took the kids on a 90-minute jungle expedition.
The kids and I checked in for our tour and then headed to the nearby petting zoo for a few minutes. There were goats, roosters, pigs, a cow and a turtle.
This was our jungle tour vehicle, a 6-wheel drive Swiss Pinzgauer.
The tour group was divided into 2 of these vehicles.
We started driving through the jungle and came across these idols. Our tour guide explained what they represented to the religion of Hawaiians. (Um...I think the God of fertility, the God of crops? I had kids distracting me, that's my excuse.)
That little island popping up there is known as Chinaman's Hat or Mokoli'i.
We passed these ancient Hawaiian fish ponds:
Our driver gave each of the kids an opportunity to "drive":
It was hard to capture on video, but watch this YouTube video to see this plant in action:
Our guides also showed us these "fake pineapples" and other cool leaves:
Meanwhile, Brian was out on an ATV ride in another part of the ranch.
The kids and I finished our tour about 20 minutes before Brian did, so we had some Hawaiian shaved ice while we waited for him:
The ranch had a restaurant inside and some light lunch foods where we got the shaved ice, but we packed a lunch and we decided to have a picnic at the beach.
Up next: Picnic at the beach and Waikiki