It was our first time heading to Hawaii, and we were determined to pack in as much adventure as possible! 8 days of paradise!!!
Sean, Graham and I packed our bags and tagged along with my side of the family (my mom, stepdad, sister, brother in law, and nephew) flew from Utah to Hawaii. It was a long 7 hour flight with a 14 month old... but we managed to get through it.
Heres a funny photo of me wearing Graham in my Solly Baby wrap, after being patted down in security. "How not to wear your baby wrap" haha
We flew comfort plus with Delta, and I was so excited to see vegan options on their in flight menu.
It was a 4 hour time change, by the time we landed, so we were able to still get a few things done on our first day.
I have listed our itinerary for you to check out and some recommendations I have for vegan restaurants.
Sean, Graham, and I are the only vegans in our family. So when we went out to eat, we mainly ate at non vegan establishments. That was totally fine, because we were able to customize or ask the waiter to remove dairy from the dishes. Surprisingly we came across many vegan plates! It was lovely to see so many vegan options already on the menu!
My original itinerary included a lot of hikes, but after arriving we learned that it was going to be too much for a 14 month old and 4 year old to handle. So we scaled back and did more relaxing activities! Which was much needed!
Tuesday, October 10th
11:45am: Flight takes off out of Salt Lake City and to Honolulu
2:32pm: Land in Oahu
Head over and get the rental car
Check into the hotel/condo
We unpacked, put our swimsuits on and headed straight to our hotels little village. They had about 7 different pools and a man-made lagoon to swim in, which also led straight out to the Pacific Ocean. It was pretty neat to have direct access to the beach from our hotel.
After exploring the village, pools and the hotel beach front we freshened up and headed to dinner.
6:30pm: Dinner Reservations at Sansei Sushi
Wednesday October 11th
6am: Sean, Graham and I woke up early and drove to the other side of the island to get our family photos taken. (the rest of our family didn't want to participate, they hate having there photo taken) It was so beautiful to watch the sunset come up over the ocean, while our photographer took our photos.
I can't wait to send out my Holiday cards with these beautiful photos!
Sophia did an excellent job, and I am grateful to have had her capture these special moments. Here are just a few of my favorite images.
We drove back to the hotel and grabbed a Starbucks coffee to help us stay awake!
My family and I piled into the car and we went on a beautiful hike. The waterfall at the top was fun to play in. It felt like I was walking through Jurassic Park. It was so green and lush, with gigantic trees everywhere!
10am Morning hike Manoa Falls
After the hike I dragged my family to this cafe. Unfortunately not everyone wanted to try it. But my mom, Sean, Graham and I enjoyed it!
Lunch at Peace Cafe (ALL VEGAN ESTABLISHMENT)
After lunch we drove over to a beach where my mother claimed was the softest sand on Oahu. When we arrived, I was surprised that it wasn't crowded. The view of the Makapuu lighthouse was amazing, and my mother was right. It was incredibly soft sand!
Hang out on beach of Makapuu, wander, explore area.
MY SWIM TOP: https://www.albionfit.com/collections/swims/products/stripies-101-crop-top
On the way back to the hotel we stopped for a treat. This is a completely vegan dessert! Its non dairy and made from bananas! They have a store front and a food truck location.
By the time our vacation was over I had stopped by Banan 3 times! I wish we had one in Utah!!
Banan for Ice cream
We headed back to hotel to freshen up and get ready for dinner. This restaurant was in a cute little village next to the Disney Aulani resort.
8pm Dinner Reservations at Monkeypod Kitchen
Thursday October 12th
For Breakfast we walked down into our hotels village and grabbed Acai bowls at Lanikai Juice
We drove towards the North shore and spent awhile at the plantaion. On our train ride around the farm I saw a jackfruit tree! It was so cool to see one in person! They are huge!
10am Dole Plantation
Drive to the North Shore Beach
2-4pm Meg and Sean have Surf Lessons with Uncle Bryans surf academy. This was my second time learning how to surf. I tried it once in Byron Bay, Australia. But this time around was completly different, because of the type of waves. My instructor even told me to forgot a few things I had learned in Australia because surfing in Hawaii is not the same. The waves were longer and you can ride it out a lot farther. In Byron Bay you had to be quick on your feet. It was Sean's first time and he got up quick and had it down. I was impressed. It took my a bit longer but luckily I got it down.
While we surfed my family hung out on a nearby beach.
After surfing we got Shaved Ice at Matsumoto’s
We went across the street and got dinner at the famous shrimp food trucks. 90% of the food trucks were all shrimp or pork. Sean and I almost thought we weren't able to eat. But we found a crepe food truck selling veggie buckwheat crepes, that were vegan! Lucky us!
Friday October 13th
10am:We woke up and got another acai bowl and then waited for our driver to pick us up for our Snorkel Reservations.
This is a state park and they are very adamant about keeping the fish and coral safe. You are required to watch a 10 minute video before entering the bay. They also have staff and lifeguards nearby.
Meg, Sean, Pattie, Kevin went Snorkeling at Hanauma Bay. We made reservations with Hanauma Bay Snorkel Adventures
3pm Return to hotel
6pm We got dressed up and headed to our dinner reservations at House without a Key. The view and restaurants property was beautiful! The menu did not have any friendly vegan options. It was really hard to order food here. But I ended up enjoying the view with many cocktails and french fries.
Saturday October 14th
6:25 am- 1:45 pm Pearl Harbor tour - Meg & Sean
Since it was our first trip here, the rest of our family had already been to Pearl Harbor, so they hung out at the beach while we toured the memorial.
Part of our tour included the famous Swap Meet, since it was across the street. I was not excited about going, but I had never been to one before.
It actually turned out to be pretty fun! We bought a few hawaiian things for Graham and tried freshly cut Jackfruit and drank fresh coconut milk.
2pm We got back and relaxed at the pool and beach
5pm Dinner reservations at Bills. They are not a fully vegan restaurant but they had many vegan dishes on their menu.
Sunday, October 15th
9am Reservations for Brunch @ Hau Tree Lanai. This was the cutest beach side cafe. Everything was pink and white, with 2 huge banyan trees growing in the dining room.
We drove to this beach hoping to see some turtles on the beach, since that is what this beach is famous for. Sadly we didn't see any. But still enjoyed the view of the bright blue ocean.
I promise he loved the water.. maybe not so much the swinging... haha
Headed back to the condo
We walked downtown to get more banan! I just couldn't stop eating this stuff!
After shopping we stopped to get a quick appetizer and some drinks.
We took the beach boardwalk and headed back to hotel.
7pm dinner at Buho. Mexican food is hard to come across in Hawaii. But this place was delicious and it had a rooftop view of downtown!
( My mother ordered this corn with feta, I ordered mine without feta... but forgot to snap a quick pic)
This little turd never sits still anymore... I am thankful we all took turns chasing him around at dinner time
Monday October 16th
Slept in and took a relaxing day.
My family, Sean and Graham hit the pool, while I went to get a facial and body scrub at the spa.
We rented a water tricycle to rid around the Hotels lagoon
7:30pm Reservations Dinner @ Dukes Waikiki. This place was packed! It is super popular and has a great beach front location. They had many fish plates, but I simply asked the waiter to swap it for tofu!
Tuesday October 17th
Breakfast at Da Cove Health Bar
Drove to north shore to shop and buy souvenirs. One of my favorite purchases was pure coconut syrup!
We came back and hung out at the hotel pool one last time, before we packed up and headed to airport.
SEANS SWIM TRUNKS: https://shop.nordstrom.com/s/billabong-northpoint-x-board-shorts/4742340
Flight take off at 8:40pm
Graham slept more on this flight thankfully, but still wanted to run up and down the aisles exploring!
Wednesday October 18th
Flight lands at 6:53am
Pick up dogs & Drive home
Mahalo Oahu! We had so much fun exploring your beautiful land! We can't wait to come back!
Megan The Vegan Mom