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Beach and Diamond Head

Our Adventure Begins
Our Adventure Begins for Our Cruise to Hawaii and Canada...

For months and months, the planning for the Hawaii trip had been fun. Trina and Brannon, our best friends from Safford, were to spend the 18 days with us on our adventure, along with their kids. However, about a month before the cruise started, Trina and Brannon made a decision not to go to Hawaii because they felt they needed to move to Idaho.

Even though we were saddened by their decision, we knew it was in the best interest of their children to do so. With sadness, we decided to continue the trip to Hawaii despite their absence.

The Trip began from Safford, AZ. We would take a flight to Hawaii and catch up to the Carnival Spirit in Honolulu. After a seven day cruise to four the major islands, we would then cross the Pacific to Vancouver, Canada and spend several more days exploring Vancouver before returning to Safford.

The trip was very good, even with the rough seas as we left the big island of Hawaii and made the five-day crossing to Vancouver. However, as the days piled up on our vacation, we eventually became home sick in Vancouver and decided to leave a few days early. Even with having to work at getting out of town on an earlier flight, it was well worth it to return home.

Earlier in Greg's childhood, his parents had taken him to several islands in Hawaii. So it was important to Greg to have Susan and the kids experience what he had experienced over 30 years earlier.

A long Trip to Hawaii Begins the Day Before...

With the flight being an extremely long one, we decided to travel to Phoenix the night before. Our first flight out of Phoenix to Los Angeles was to have wheels up at 6:00. For the kids, flying on United was a bit of an adventure as they realized they were going to actually walk out on the tarmac and walk up into the aircraft. This was very different for them but interesting.

With a brief layover in Los Angeles, we were then on our way to Honolulu. We were lucky that we sat on the right side of the aircraft. As we approached the airport, Greg quickly realized that we were going to see Diamond Head, as well as Waikiki Beach as we arrived. But more importantly, Greg knew, from studying, that we were going to pass right over the cruise ship, which was already docked near the Aloha Tower area.

Grandpa had already called ahead of time and made sure Hawaiian leis were available for the kids. They had a great time with the leis.

Susan and Brooklyn were to take the bus to the cruise terminal as Greg and Preston jumped on the Alamo bus to rent a jeep for two days. We felt that would give us more freedom to explore areas that other passengers would not be able to.

With Excitement, We Begin the Process of Embarkation
Greg and Preston successfully got to Alamo, rented the jeep, and actually found the cruise terminal without the help of Susan. Once parked, the boys realized that the girls were actually stuck on the bus for almost 30 minutes before they were released due to congestion at the terminal.

Once final verification of our documents was processed, we were finally allowed to step onto the ship. This was the first time that we had actually agreed to take a room on the back of the ship. Greg’s long time friend and cruise consultant, Eugene, had begged Greg to try the back of the ship for years. Reluctantly, we decided to try it and it was the best arrangement we had ever had. Eugene was of course, correct in trying it.

The kids actually had their own room on this trip. Eugene was able to use past guest privileges and for a small fee, let the kids sleep in their own cabin.

Being on the back of the ship was amazing as far as the balcony is concerned. Normally, on the side of the ship, you can only see 180 degrees. But on the back, our deck actually wrapped around the the back to the side giving us a full 270 degrees of panoramic scenery.

Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head National Park
After a brief lunch on board the ship, we decided to head out with the jeep and explore Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head National Park. Although we were tired, we decided to actually climb Diamond Head. It was a long walk, but well worth the view.
Continue to the next chapter,
"Second Day in Honolulu Part I"
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