Tag Archives: Hawaii

Pearl Harbor Tour A Memorable Experience And A Must-Do Honolulu Activity

USS Arizona Memorial Provides Many Moving Moments

USS Arizona Memorial
The USS Arizona Memorial sits gently over the sunken ship.


You can see it on TV specials and documentaries but nothing can actually prepare you emotionally for visiting Pearl Harbor.

The tour is free but the memories are a treasure.  (There are paid van tours which can be set up and leave from every hotel in Waikiki Beach. They are as easy to find as sand. And at the venue, donations are accepted.)

First, you go to a waiting room of sorts, which is really a mini museum. Then you board a small boat and ride out to the USS Arizona Memorial.

When you step from the boat onto the white open-air structure, which is over the sunken ship, the mood of everyone changes. You go from chatting with friends and others to complete silence.

You move around the structure – which is small, only capable of holding a few dozen people –with a quiet respect. The monument is like a T-bone over the ship and on a wall are the names of those who died during the attack on that day of infamy.

It’s easy to spend several minutes just staring at the wall, slowly reading the names. But there are so many of them, 1,177. This is when the reality of the attack really starts to take hold of the mind. The list is so long it’s impossible to read all the names.

All around you there is silence. It’s like being at a funeral, but a funeral for people you don’t know and never knew, but respect.

This is a good time to peer over the side. Droplets of oil rise to the surface out of the ship. It’s said they are actually the tears of those who lost their lives.

You can stay as long as you like, but somewhere around 20 minutes is enough time. Then you board another boat and return to shore.

No matter what else you do in Hawaii, and how much you whoop it up in the bars of Waikiki Beach, those moments at Pearl Harbor will stay with you for a long time.


• 1,300 walk-in tickets are available daily at the Pearl Harbor Visitor Center, which opens at 7:00 a.m. Tickets are free and available on a first come, first serve basis.

• You can also get tickets in advance by calling 1-877-444-6777 or on-line at:  www.recreation.gov

• Hours: Daily, 7 a.m.-5 p.m.

• Address: 1 Arizona Memorial Place, Honolulu, HI 96818

Thanksgiving Weekend Weather Forecasts At USA Beaches

Sunny Skies And Warm Temperatures In Southern California

Coronado Beach San Diego
Coronado Beach in San Diego is one of the best places for weather over Thanksgiving.


It seems whenever I do one of these holiday weekend weather reports, the advice is always the same: Head west for the best beach weather.

And that’s the case once again for Thanksgiving Day in 2014. Southern California will be basking in 70-degree weather and sunshine.

Los Angeles – which has beaches including Malibu, Santa Monica, Long Beach and the lively South Bay consisting of Hermosa, Manhattan and Redondo – it’s the usual warm Thanksgiving weather. Perfect for hanging out on the beach and/or taking a bike ride along The Strand. On Saturday, USC takes on Notre Dame in the LA Coliseum; if you are going be sure and bring a sweatshirt (but NOT one that says ND, ha).

San Diego – Ditto for the most fun city in California. Have drinks on the deck of the Hotel Del overlooking Coronado, stroll the dramatic cliffs in La Jolla and act like it’s endless summer in Pacific Beach, Ocean Beach and Mission Beach. Or, get a convertible and cruise up the coast through the beach towns of Del Mar, Encinitas, San Clemente, Dana Point, Laguna Beach and Newport Beach.

Northern California – San Francisco will be nice with sunny skies and temperatures in the 60s but remember it gets cold in “the City” at night so always have a jacket or sweatshirt with you. If you’re going wine tasting, Napa will also be mostly sunny and in the mid-60s (Friday is going to be the best and brightest day). If you find yourself in Carmel or Monterey, consider yourself lucky! Plus, the weather will be mostly sunny and mid-60s but like in San Francisco it will get chilly at night. Up the coast 45 minutes in Santa Cruz, do all your outdoor activities before Saturday when rain is expected to arrive in this cool little beach town.

Hawaii – The weather in Southern California actually surpasses that of the #1 Thanksgiving destination according to PubClub.com, Honolulu. While the temperatures in paradise will be in the typical mid-80s, it will be mostly cloudy the entire weekend. This will not affect the parade through Waikiki Beach, which takes place Friday evening and honors Pearl Harbor survivors and victims.  Maui and the Big Island will have sunshine.

Another fairly pleasant beach to be at on Turkey Day Weekend is South Padre Island, Texas. There, it will be partly sunny Thursday and Friday with full sunshine arriving on Saturday, with temperatures in the mid-60s and upper 50s at night.

The South and East Coast will be coming out of a period of thunderstorms by Thursday with overall mostly sunny skies. Here’s a breakdown from Florida to Martha’s Vineyard.

Florida –In South Beach, rain on Wednesday gives way to to partly sunny skies the rest of the weekend with highs in the low 70s dropping to about 60 at night. The situation is similar in Key West with rain on Wednesday, mostly cloudy Thursday and Friday and showers Saturday morning. Temperatures will be in the mid-70s and mid-60s.  In the Keys, it will be cloudy and windy Thursday and Friday and sunny on Saturday. On the West Coast of the Sunshine State, St. Pete will be very pleasant, mostly sunny Thursday thru the weekend with temperatures a mild 65.

South Carolina – Myrtle Beach will be nice, albeit cool at night, on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (55 high, 40 low) with rain coming in on Saturday night. The nice resort area of Hilton Head Island will be sunny but a tad cool, especially at night. The daytime highs are expected to be in the mid-50s with the evening temperatures dropping to the low 40s.

Ocean City, MD – This popular beach town will be cool and sunny with temperatures stretching to 50 on Friday but lows in the mid-30s.

Martha’s Vineyard – A warm stretch of weather hits the East Coast on Thanksgiving and that is going to make Martha’s Vineyard rather pleasant, at least by November standards. It will be mostly sunny with temperatures hovering near 50 and lows a tolerable 38-39. Rain is expected to arrive on Saturday.



Hurricane Ana To Miss Hawaii But Drench Honolulu And Maui

Tourists Better Take Their Mai Tais Inside For Shelter

Hurricane Ana Hawaiian Islands
As this AccuWeather graphic shows, Ana will bring rain to the Hawaiian Islands.

If you’re vacationing in Hawaii the good news is that Hurricane Ana will bypass the islands.

The bad news is that you won’t be going back home with a suntan.

The weather forecast for Honolulu and Maui is for heavy rains and not just through the weekend. Honolulu is expected to be drenched for at least a week. Maui will get a break with some sunshine on Tuesday and Wednesday but the clouds return on Thursday.

As for Ana, the AccuWeather.com Hurricane Center expects an area of high pressure will prevent the hurricane from hitting any of the Hawaiian islands.

Therefore the strongest and most destructive winds will be offshore. So there goes your chances for that romantic sunset cruise in Kanapali, Maui, or taking one of the booze cruises in Waikiki Beach.

The impacts of Ana’s presences in the area will spread across Hawaii in an east-to-west fashion late Friday through Sunday.

The Big Island, mainly southern areas, and Kauai are at greatest risk of experiencing flooding rainfall and tropical storm-force winds. Such winds could cause tree damage and power outages, while isolated mudslides may result.

Based on Ana’s current forecast path, downpours and winds of 40 mph could graze the other islands. Localized flash flooding and power outages would result, including in Honolulu and Hilo.

Rough and dangerous surf will develop throughout the islands.

So you’re going to have to enjoy your Mai Tais and other rum drinks from inside the bar rather than on the lanai.

Locals Flooding Oahu’s North Shore For Massive Waves At Sunset Beach

Massive 50-Foot Waves Brings Gawkers And Bumper-To-Bumper Traffic

North Shore waves
People line the street to see the massive North Shore waves. Photo; Hawaii News Now

Locals, normally to laid-back to care, are excited about the massive waves hitting Hawaii.

They are clogging the highway to the North Shore to check out the scene. Traffic is bumper-to-bumper, making the highway resemble the 4-5 freeway in Los Angeles at rush hour.

Cars are lined up on the edge of the road and people are watching as huge waves are crashing down seeming right in front of them.

Hopefully, they are doing it from a safe distance because it’s not wise to tempt nature just to get a good photo to put on Facebook or Instagram. The huge waves are a result of a Pacific storm that’s bringing high surf not just to Hawaii but all up and down the California coast, as well.

If you are going to join them, be patient. There’ s only one road in and out of the North Shore and it’s a slow two-lane burn. Make a day of it, in fact. Stop at the shrimp trucks for garlic shrimp. Have some shaved ice or a plate lunch and pie from Ted’s Bakery.

Here’s a slideshow of the waves: www.hawaiinewsnow.com/slideshow?widgetid=102159&utm_content=buffere9264&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Labor Day Weekend Weather Forecasts At US Beaches

California, Hawaii And Texas Have The Sunshine While Rain Pounds The East Coast And Florida

Waikiki Beach
Waikiki Beach is one of the best places to be for Labor Day Weekend.

For the best beach weather on the last real beach weekend of the year, head to the West Coast. Or Texas.

That’s where you will be able to put your toes between the sand and work on your tan. California, Texas and Hawaii will have the most sunshine of anyplace along the coast in the USA for this Labor Day Weekend.

You can bake in San Padre Island, Texas, where there’s not a cloud in the sky until a few on Monday and temperatures in the low ’90s.

In Hawaii, the weather forecast for Honolulu is 88 and full sunshine.  Maui will have fought off its rain from early in the week for to be mostly sunny with highs in the low 80s.

Florida is not the place to be for sunshine. From Daytona Beach to Key West, it’s warm but also wet. It is great if you want high temperatures and humidity! Ft. Lauderdale is in the 90s with rain the entire weekend.  To the south in Miami, the sun may make a periodic  appearances on Saturday and Sunday. Key West offers a ray of hope of sunshine with party cloudy skies after rain on Friday.

On Florida’s Gulf Coast, St. Pete is party sunny and hot, with temps in the upper 90’s. Just to the south in Siesta Key – one of Surfside Sam’s favorite beaches in Florida – will be hit with thundershowers on Saturday and Sunday after a sunny Friday. Things are not any better up in Destin, which will be hit with rain the entire four days.

Things don’t clear up along the Gulf Coast until you get past New Orleans (which is party cloudy and a sweltering 97-degree temperature due to hit on Saturday).

And the entire Eastern seaboard is a series of showers for the weekend: Newport, R.I.; Martha’s Vineyard; the Hamptons, Ocean Beach, Md; Charleston, S.C.; Hilton Head Island and Savannah (Ga).

You may get some partial sunshine at some point but if you are at the beaches in any of these places, you’ll be spending a lot of your time inside. Good thing it’s the start of college football, with plenty of games all day and night on Saturday!

Wherever you are on Labor Day, and if you’re in the sunshine or being pelted by rain running to a bar or restaurant, have fun!






Waikiki Beach Weather Returns To Sunny Weekend After Flossie

Honolulu Hot And Full Of Sunshine In Wake Of Tropical Storm

Waikiki Beach
It's a great time to be on Waikiki Beach with warm and sunny weather.

Tropical Storm Flossie dumped rain on Hawaii and caused flights to be delayed, but that’s a thing of the past as Waikiki Beach will be bathed in sunshine this weekend.

Temperatures will be in the mid-80s and there will be plenty of suntanning by the shore. These conditions will hold at least thru Tuesday (and likely behind, for it’s the norm here in Hawaii).

It’s also a bit humid, so lots of people will also be in the water.

In addition to the beach, there’s plenty more to do in Waikiki, though most tourists seem to prefer shopping and dining at the restaurants.

But it’s the beach that is the main attraction, of course. Just be careful about getting too much sun because you don’t want to get sunburned and ruin your trip. Hawaii is only 19 degrees north of the equator and even for regular suntanners two hours can be enough to get red.

So don’t overdue it, especially on your first day. Keep in mind that, the only way to prevent a sunburn is to get a suntan.

In Pursuit Of Waikiki Beach’s Best Fried Rice At Blazin’ Steaks

One Time Is Better Than No Time For The Beach Blogger

 Fried Rice Blazin Steaks
Blazin' Steaks has great food, but don't ask for the fried rice.


My friend has been spending a lot of time in Waikiki Beach lately on business, and when I went there to join him for a few days on a weekend, one of the first things he told me was about this place to eat that has “the world’s best fried rice.”

It was a only a block from where we were staying so of course I was eager to give it a try. It’s called Blazin’ Steaks and this particular location – and there are a few of them in Oahu – is right behind the Hyatt Regency, pretty much across from the Duke’s statue.

I went for lunch on a Friday, alone, as my friend was at work. The place is small and was very busy. I looked at the menu – it’s an L&L BBQ type of place, serving traditional Hawaiian food of rice and grilled meats – and looked at what others were ordering. “The chicken is good, the steak is great and the shrimp is really good,” the guy at the cash register told me.

I was salivating but what I did not see was fried rice. When I inquired about it, the bro said, “oh, we don’t make that any longer.”

My wide-open, anxious eyes rolled in the back of my head. What!? My friend just had it yesterday!

Just then, the manager emerged from a side room and seeing my disappointment, said he would make it for me. He did and it was sensational. In fact, he comped me the fried rice! I had the chicken with it and the full lunch plate and was only charged 10 bucks.  You just have to love that Aloha spirit in Hawaii.

Still, I couldn’t understand why they would not make a dish that clearly is so spectacular.

 Fried Rice Blazin Steaks
The fried rice is no longer available but the rest of the food is great.


 Fried Rice Blazin Steaks
The Waikiki Beach location of Blazin' Steaks is behind the Hyatt.


When my friend went back in and few days later and ordered it for something like the 10th time in the last two weeks he was told, “we have a small cooking area, you always come in when we are busy (well heck, it’s lunchtime!)  and it takes up a lot of counter space. We’ll make it for you one more time but this is the last time.”

They are not at all like the famous Soup Nazi of the “Seinfield” episode –quite the opposite, in fact – but it was clear the we both had the last of that great fried rice.

At least I had it that once!