Exploring Maui: The Valley Isle

Haleakala Sunset

Living on Oahu is amazing, but when I have a long weekend I love to explore the neighbor islands. Since I haven’t visited Maui in two years, it seemed necessary to take a quick trip over Easter weekend. It helps when some of your best friends used to live there and can give you a pretty amazing to-do list. It’s even better when they decide to join you and show you their favorite spots in person (thanks Macey & Liz).…

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Island Life, travel

Swimming to Chinaman’s Hat (Mokoli’i)

As mentioned in my Oahu Favorites post, one of the best things to do is swim out to Chinaman’s hat (Mokoli’i) on the east side of the island. With water shoes and at low tide you can walk from the beach area out to the small island. At low tide the water will be about waist high. However, I highly recommend bringing a kayak, boogie board, paddle board,  floats and/or fins. The swim is best recommended for people who are experienced…

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Island Life

Wa’ahila Ridge Trail to Mount Olympus

Trail to Mt. Olympus

Mount Olympus is one of the prettiest hikes town side on Oahu. There are two ways to reach the summit. The first trail begins in Manoa valley and the second trail begins on the Wa’ahila Ridge Trail in St. Louis Heights. I’ve done both, but I think I enjoy the latter trail best. The hike takes about 4 hours round trip and is ~5 miles long. Getting there: Driving through St. Louis Heights you’ll take Peter Street pretty much all…

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health, Island Life

Wiliwilinui Ridge Trail: A Quick and Easy Ridge Hike

Wiliwilinui Ridge Trail

The Wiliwilinui trail is tucked back in a gated community in Hawaii Kai. It is a very well maintained path and all you need to do is collect a parking pass from the gate guard before you begin. This hike is 2.5 miles long and takes about 2 hours to complete. Getting there: Take H-1 to Hawaii Kai until H-1 turns into Kalanianaole Highway. Turn left on Laukahi Street and follow the road until you approach Waialae Iki subdivision guard station. The…

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Island Life

Tom Tom Trail: Makapu’u to Waimanalo

Tom Tom Puka

Every time there’s a holiday in Hawaii I try to take complete advantage of outdoors. This MLK day my friend Courtney and I decided to tackle the Tom Tom trail on the east side of the island. The trail is about 6.6 miles from Makapuu to Waimanalo and about 3-4 to and from the Tom Tom Trail Puka. We decided to do the entire 6.6 mile route. How to get to Tom Tom Trail Begin from the ever popular Makapuu…

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Island Life

Northern Vietnam: Hanoi, Ha Long, and Cat Ba

Northern Vietnam

Vietnam: Part 2 Traveling in SEA is extremely cheap which is why it’s such an ideal place for backpackers. We spent our first half of the week exploring Saigon in southern Vietnam and spent the last half in northern Vietnam. Our flight from south to north was only an hour and cost us about 30 dollars one way. We left Ho Chi Minh City and landed in Hanoi around midnight. We booked a hostel in Hanoi for one night and…

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travel

Southern Vietnam: Ho Chi Minh City & Mekong Delta

Guide to Southern Vietnam

Vietnam: Part 1 Day 1: Ho Chi Minh City Nicole, Lauren, and I departed Bangkok and headed to Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), Vietnam. The visa-upon-arrival took about two hours at the airport, but what can ya do? We took a cab to our hostel in District 1 and by that time it was already 8pm and we were exhausted. Travelers tip: The first thing we noticed when we stepped outside was how humid hot the air was. If you’re traveling to…

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travel

Traveling Thailand

Wat Pho Temple

My first time in Thailand was in 2015. I was backpacking for a couple weeks with my besties from college. We started in Bangkok, and made our way through the islands for the Full Moon Party and New Years then finished up in Chiang Mai trekking with elephants. It has been my favorite place to-date and it’s not surprising that I made my way back for a few days. 2015 Thailand Recap 2016 Thailand: Bangkok This time around Nicole and I were…

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travel

Best of Japan: Day trips

Japan Shrine

I spent my Thanksgiving Holiday on a plane headed for Japan (Thanks, China Airlines for the two decent meals on my 9 hour flight). I was meeting my friend Nicole in Yokosuka where we were staying with our friend, Josh, who had just been stationed out there. My very first impression of Japan is it is CLEAN and the transit system is impeccable. Nicole and I purchased our Japan Rail Pass before we left so all I had to do was…

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travel

Makapuu Trail to Tide Pools

Makapuu Tidepool

As mentioned in my Oahu Favorites post, one of my favorite spots on island is the Makapuu tide pools. The tide pools are a little detour from the ever popular Makapuu Lighthouse trail on the east side of Oahu. How to get there: If driving from Honolulu, park at the Makapuu lighthouse trail entrance on your right. Try to get there early as parking fills up rather quick. Start at the paved road and continue walking up. This is one…

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Island Life