For our second day in Oahu we had rented a car. It seems to be one of the least expensive ways to see a lot on the Hawaiian Islands. We often rent from the airport, since they have the most availability. But it's not very close to the port where we docked so we once again used Elizabeth's favorite mode of transportation when we're on Oahu and took the bus there!
Note: we've since returned to Oahu and it seems like the bus was no longer running right to the airport, instead stopping a few blocks away and requiring a 15 minute walk. That may change again? So be sure to check the latest schedule. Google maps seems to do a decent job of helping you use public transportation to get around in a number of countries we've visited.
As we started driving north, one of our first stops was at the Wahiawa Botanical Gardens. We were expecting flowers but instead realized it's an arboretum with a lot of trees and not many flowers. It's a very large former sugar plantation experimental arboretum. It's a nice quiet area with lots of shaded walks and off the beaten path, so it's much less hectic than Waikiki.
Next we headed back south to the Nuʻuanu Pali Lookout. Although we'd been here before it's always enjoyable to visit with ever changing views depending on the clouds and weather. The one consistent feature seems to be the ever present strong wind. It's also a convenient way to get to the east side of the island. See the photo album for more pictures from this lookout, including a panorama.
Once on the east side of the island we headed further south to go around the southern part of the island. One of our stops was at the Halona Blowhole Lookout. The sight can vary a great deal depending on tide and swells. We were pretty lucky that day though.
Another stop along the south west part of Oahu was at the Lānaʻi Lookout. The name originates from the fact that on a clear day you can see the neighboring islands of Lanai, Molokai and Maui. Unfortunately it wasn't a real clear day, though we might have been able to see some of the islands and there were scenic views of waves crashing on the rugged coastline.
Ever wonder where the architectural term "lanai" came from? It's actually Hawaiian, Lānaʻi, for "porch."
After returning the rental car at the airport we spent another $1.25 each to catch the bus from the airport to Waikiki (or you can spend $40 or so for a taxi). There we went to one of our favorite places, the Yardhouse. Yes, we do have one in our hometown as well, but there's always a wide variety of local Hawaiian beers on tap in the Oahu one. And so we had another flight of beer as well as some of the happy hour bargain plates.
Suitably refreshed with beer and food wasn't available aboard the ship, we once again took our favorite mode of transportation when we're in Waikiki, the bus, to get back to the ship.