Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Episode 184

categories: USA Travel


The Amateur Traveler talks to Robin who is an expert on Hawaii about the island of Oahu. More specifically Robin is a Condé Nast “Top Travel Specialist” for Hawaii.


We talk about populous and bustling downtown Honolulu and the see and be seen on the beach at Waikiki. We also talk about quieter beaches like Ala Moana Beach Park, Magic Island, and Haleiwa, snorkeling at Hanauma Bay, kayaking, swimming with wild spinner dolphins, and scuba diving out of Haleiwa.

Robin gives us tips for visiting Pearl Harbor’s USS Arizona memorial, the “Mighty Mo” battleship Missouri (and the Explorer’s Tour), and the Pacific Aviation Museum.

We talk about the differences between the windward and the leeward parts of Oahu.

We hike the extinct volcano at Diamond Head (bring a flashlight).

We discuss loco moco, a plate lunch, and the upscale Alan Wong’s restaurant Honolulu. We talk about nightlife from Kani Ka Pila to more trendy spots.

click here to download (mp3)
click here to download (iTunes enhanced)

Show Notes

Robin on twitter
Landmark Travel – Robin’s Travel agency
Two Good Kayaks in Kailua
Pacific Aviation Museum
USS Missouri Explorer’s Tour
The Kahala Resort
Turtle Bay Resort
Wild Dolphin Foundation
Swim with wild Spinner Dolphins
Dolphin Wold
Alan Wong’s restaurant in Honolulu
Visit Oahu
Hawaii State Capital
Outrigger Reef Grill for kani ka pila (let’s make music)
Cyril Pahinui – Grammy-winning Hawaiian slack key musician
Manoa DNA – “Hawaii’s hotest band”
Halekulani for traditional Hawaiian hula
RumFire at the Sheraton – hot spot for nightlife


Travel News – Good Job, Railway Rollback, Cruise with Purpose, Runaway Flyer, Volunteer Vacations

  • A Really Good Job
  • Rail Europe turns back time for tickets
  • First “Cruise with Purpose” Shore Excursion


Stupid Tourist and Elk, Alberta, Canada – Photo Friday
Virginia tells us a baby moose is a calf
Mike is ready to go someplace cold
Dan from San Diego’s Venice


Today the Amateur Traveler talks about beaches, Diamond Head and nightlife as we go to Oahu, Hawaii.

Welcome to the Amateur Traveler. I’m your host Chris Christensen. Before we get into this week’s interview, I do have some news stories for you. The first one as you probably heard is that Queensland, Australia “Best Job In The World Contest” did finish. A bloke from the United Kingdom will be getting paid $100,000 to promote Queensland over the next six months. But since you missed out on that, there is another opportunity for “Not The Best Job In The World” but what is being quoted as a “Really Good Job”, which is an offer to work for a winery as a blogger in Napa for six months with housing included at $10,000 a month. And then speaking of good opportunities, RailEurope is wanting you to party like it ‘s 1959. To promote their 50th anniversary, on May 12th they’ll be offering a EuroRail ticket at the 1959 rate of $125 for a 5-day, 3-country rail pass. And then another interesting opportunity, if you’re going on a cruise and you want to do some good while you’re there, then there’s a cruise to Alaska that might be able to help you. Juneau has a tour operator called Gastineau Guiding that is doing a deal with Holland America where as part of a shore excursion, you would help out the Alaska Marine Conservation Alliance by documenting individual humpback and orca whales. If any of those sounds interesting, check out the Show Notes at

And before we go much further, I’d like to thank our sponsor, who is is the Internets leading provider in spoken audio entertainment with over 50,000 titles to choose from. You can sign up for a free trial today and get your free downloadable audio book by going to I’m still listening to The Clue Train Manifesto trying to figure out how to do better on-line business. Again, get your free book at

Chris: I’d like to welcome to the show, Robin who is coming to talk to us about Oahu in Hawaii. Robin, welcome to the show.

Robin: Thank you very much Chris.

Chris: And I was looking for an expert on Oahu and Robin you certainly fit the bill. You are, as I understand, a Conde Nest “Top Travel Specialist” for Hawaii since 2003. Did I say that correctly?

Robin: That is correct.

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Chris: Cool. And I feel a little silly asking this, but why should somebody go to Hawaii and more specifically why Oahu?

Robin: Hawaii is a beautiful tropical destination and Oahu packs all of the experiences into one island. They also have great flights in there. The flight schedules are very frequent from all over the United States. It offers activities as well as that tropical beauty. You can have the excitement and nightlife of Waikiki, the beautiful metropolitan area of Honolulu and then you have the rest of the island devoted to that beautiful tropical atmosphere with the gorgeous color water and the warm breezes. And the currency is the same US dollar, we’re driving on the same side of the street. I just had someone from Michigan call me up this week and she was very worried about renting a car because she didn’t think they drove on the same side of the street. I reassured her, “No problem. All the rules of the road that apply on the Mainland, apply in Hawaii, so you’ll be just fine.”

Chris: As I recall Hawaii has been a state for a little while here so…

Robin: Yes, as a matter of fact, Hawaii is celebrating 50 years of statehood this year.

Chris. Right. Exactly. Interesting. And as you and I talked about, but to let the listeners know, my next trip is actually Oahu. And this will be, I think, our 4th or 5th trip to the Hawaiian Islands, but we’ve never been to Oahu. And, in part we’ve skipped it, you mentioned it being metropolitan. I think 90% of the population of the Hawaiian Islands live on Oahu. Do I have that correct?

Robin: That is true. Yes.

Chris: And so we had up till now, skipped it. But what kind of treats are awaiting us? What kind of things should we not miss when we go to Oahu?

Robin: There is something for everyone and I always ask clients, “What are you looking to experience?” Because certainly there is the sun, sand, and surf. And if you have never surfed before, it is a great place to take surfing lessons. And the beaches, while everyone thinks of the iconic Waikiki Beach, that will typically have plenty of people there. You can drive around to the windward side of the island, especially during the week when everyone else is at work, and you can have Kailua Beach and Lanikai Beach all to yourself. And go ahead and rent a kayak. There is a great shop over there, “Two Good Kayaks”, which is right there in Kailua. Pick up a kayak. Pick up some lunch. Paddle out to the Mokulua Islands, which are right off the shore and you can have an absolutely exquisite experience and not have hardly another soul around. It’s as though you have your own private beach and your own private bay where you can paddle. Some of the other places that people will want to visit, especially if they’re first time visitors: The historic sites. That of course, would be to go to Pearl Harbor. Pearl Harbor has expanded tremendously beyond the Arizona Memorial. The USS Missouri also known as the “Mighty Mo” is docked there. And this is where the surrender was signed at the end of the war with Japan. There’s lots of history there. And The Aviation Museum just opened only a couple of December’s ago. So they continue to enhance the experience, the historic experience of Pearl Harbor. And in The Aviation Museum they even have docents who were there at Pearl Harbor so you are getting first hand escorts when you are there.

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Chris: And my understanding, if we’re talking about Pearl Harbor, is if I want to see the Missouri, we should go early.

Robin: Definitely. If you want to go to Pearl Harbor, you need to get a very, very early start. Also security is extremely tight. They do not allow purses or backpacks. You essentially can take: your camera, your phone, a wallet that you can put in your pocket. If you feel you really have to take that backpack along, there are places where you can check your oversized bag. And by oversized, even if it’s a clutch purse, it‘s too big – they won’t allow it in. So I recommend highly that you leave all of your valuables behind in your hotel room. Put them in your safe. Don’t leave them in the trunk of your car. Do leave them back at the hotel. And just go very unencumbered and plan to have a wonderful day without having all of the accouterments along. You can definitely spend an entire day there. Besides seeing the Arizona, if you want to go on the Missouri, I suggest signing up in advance for the Explorers Tour where you will don a hard hat, and a reflective vest and carry a bottle of water and a flashlight and you get down into parts of the ship that have been previously closed to the public.

Chris: Interesting.

Robin: And for people to do that, you need to be pretty good on your feet, because you’re going to be going up and down ladders. So just a word to the wise, people who have a little trouble with their balance this wouldn’t be the greatest tour. But that doesn’t stop you from getting on board the ship. There are other areas you can explore but to really go behind the scenes, The Explorers Tour is the way to go.

Chris: Excellent. Now we started to mention the beaches and the North Shore and the South Shore. Probably terms that people need to know before they go to any of the Hawaiian Islands are leeward and windward.

Robin: Leeward, windward, Ewa, Diamond Head, mauka, and makai.

Chris: Ok.

Robin: When you ask someone directions, many times you’re going to hear, “Oh, it’s just mauka of here. And mauka means to the mountains. Makai means to the sea. Diamond Head means toward Diamond Head and Ewa means out in the direction toward Ewa. So depending where you are on the island, you can give those directions and you don’t have to worry about North, South, East and West. So those are good names to know, good words to know.

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Chris: Ok. One of the reasons I was bringing up leeward and windward: The weather is a little different depending on where you are on the island. That’s true on Oahu too I assume?

Robin: It is, absolutely. Because any time we have a mountain range, that’s what’s going to stop the weather and the weather on the windward side typically is a little bit rainier. It doesn’t detract from having fun. But you do have to expect that when the showers are coming, they will frequently say in a weather forecast, “Expect windward and mauka showers” because the clouds bump up against the mountains and they’ll drop their rain and it’s a great time when the rains coming down to count all the waterfalls on the Ko’olau Mountains. And then on the leeward side, that is much drier. Actually out on the leeward side of Oahu, you may find it very dry and not as green and lush as other parts of the island. And the weather is beautiful. Probably the best weather is definitely in the Waikiki and the Honolulu area and that certainly goes back to the days of the monarchy when Waikiki was the playground of royalty. They choose the best spots on the island for their fun. So to this day it remains a popular place and the weather remains great.

Chris: So if we want a little more cosmopolitan, a little better weather, not as lush, we’re staying down by Waikiki and Honolulu. And then if we want a little more remote, a little more lush, a little more tropical and a little wetter, we’re going up to the North Shore?

Robin: Going up to the North Shore. Also there is a resort area that is not very far from Waikiki but it is in a residential area and that’s the Kahala. And it has been the place where dignitaries, Presidents of the United States, Heads of States from around the world have stayed. And it is set in a community, a residential community. It is beyond Diamond Head so you really have a much quieter experience when you’re staying out there and yet you are not far at all from all of the excitement of Waikiki and downtown Honolulu. And then going out to the North Shore, for people who wanted to rent homes out there, they do have homes available. And then they also have the Turtle Bay Resort. That resort was built at a time when the zoning rules were not as strict and they were able to build right out on the promontory so they are up close, on the beach and it’s an absolutely grand setting. But there again, it is away from everything. It’s residential out there and it’s a neighbor island experience and you are still on Oahu.

Chris: Ok. Now you mentioned Diamond Head a couple of times. I think if someone isn’t familiar with Oahu, they’re picturing a large head made of diamonds and that’s perhaps not the right mental picture.

Robin: Well, that was actually the illusion that some people had when they first saw Diamond Head because it was just glimmering in the sunshine and they thought it really was diamonds. But come to find out, no it was just minerals that were sparkling in the sun. But it got that name. The name has stuck. And it is probably one of the most identifiable features and pictures when you see pictures of Hawaii that you would recognize Diamond Head right off the bat.

Chris: And what is Diamond Head?

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Robin: Diamond Head is actually an extinct volcano. It’s just the crater of a volcano. The crater itself is known as Laeahi. You can climb up Diamond Head. I would recommend going early in the morning when it’s warm. Do plan to take a flashlight and do plan to take some water along. There is a staircase where you can climb up. You are actually inside the crater and then you get to the top and you have an absolutely wonderful view.

Chris: And you mentioned there are a lot of things to do for a lot of different people. So lets look at some of the highlights. If I wanted to just lie on the beach, what’s the best beach?

Robin: The best beach, if you want to see and be seen, of course goes to Waikiki. That’s great. If you want some place that is not too far from Waikiki and it still has great beaches, there’s Ala Moana Beach Park. Magic Island is a beautiful place to go. Going out to the North Shore. Once you get to Haleiwa, now you are definitely in the heart of the North Shore. And any of the beaches out there are beautiful. Of course, it depends on the time of year as well.

Chris: Ok.

Robin: Come wintertime, the waves out on the North Shore are huge. The undertow in the water is very strong. This is not a time to be going into the water. It is definitely a time to be watching it and recognizing how powerful Mother Nature is. And if you are there on a day when they’re holding one of the surfing championships, you’ll be treated to a real thrill to see these experts surfing these enormous, enormous waves. So wintertime – not a time to go swimming out on the North Shore, but summertime the waters out there are absolutely beautiful. Very calm and a wonderful place to be.

Chris: Ok. And if I want to go snorkeling or scuba, then where do I want to go?

Robin: Snorkeling – one of the best places will be Hanauma Bay. And Hanauma Bay -they’ve done a wonderful job of protecting the environment. There is actually a little training session that is given to visitors when they arrive and they limit the number of people who can get in there each day. Plus, they give the bay a rest on Tuesday and it’s actually closed down. And this is to protect these beautiful natural resources that people enjoy so much when they are snorkeling and allows them to be healthy. Because there was a time when they did not control the number of visitors and it just wasn’t a well, healthy environment for all of the fish and the coral reefs. So if you plan to go to Hanauma Bay, plan to do it during the week and go out early. Because when the parking lot is full, they stop the cars.

Chris: Ok. Good to know. And then scuba. Is that the same thing? We would also go to Hanauma Bay?

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Robin: Scuba. It’s better going out from Haleiwa. They have some wonderful dive boats out there that will take you out to dive off wrecks. Very good clarity in the water and a wonderful experience. There’s another water activity I don’t want to miss mentioning and that’s actually swimming with a pod of Spinner Dolphins. And you can go out with a group of marine biologists and they will take you to this pod. They know when they are going to be in the area. They’re very careful to protect the Spinner Dolphins again so that they are not endangered in any way by the presence of humans and you are allowed to actually get in the water with them and it’s protected. You are not out in open water and yet you are in their natural environment.

Chris: So this is not one of those experiences where you are in a pool and they’ve brought the captive dolphins in.

Robin: No.

Chris: Interesting.

Robin: No. This is not… now of course that experience is available as well. You can do that out at the Kohala Resort. They do have that available but to swim with the Spinner Dolphins, actually go out to Waianae and you can swim out there. Make arrangements with the marine biologists and they are excellent.

Chris: And if I want to go shopping, where should I go?

Robin: Shopping. Ok.

Chris: I’ve got a teenage daughter coming with me, so this is a very selfish question.

Robin: Well, there’s plenty of shopping in Waikiki. There has been a tremendous resurgence and redevelopment of Waikiki. For people who have not been to Waikiki in five years, even three years, they are going to be very surprised at the changes, the enhancements, the beauty and the restoration of culture and a sense of place in Waikiki. I’m very, very impressed with it, but they have not missed out on the opportunities to put in Coach and Gucci and Burberry and a lot of the high-end stores. They are all available there as well. So you have plenty to choose from. And if a mall is your idea of a place to shop, then I would highly recommend Ala Moana Shopping Center. Again, not very far from Waikiki. You can even take a trolley there if you don’t have a car. And it is an outdoor mall so you have a very different experience from a lot of the malls on the mainland, which are completely enclosed.

Chris: Now you’ve sent a number of people to Oahu. What do they keep doing even though you tell them it’s just a waste of time?

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Robin: What do they keep doing, even though it’s just a waste of time? That’s a hard question to answer because to some people they feel, for example, that they need to eat at a McDonald’s no matter where they go. Not only because it gives them some level of comfort that they’re going in and they’re going to be able to order the exact same thing. But the surprising thing is that McDonald’s in Hawaii offers some local foods. So if you need a McDonald’s fix, I would suggest trying maybe a bowl of saimin there, which is a noodle soup and even their breakfast offerings in Waikiki come with fresh pineapple. So even if you’re one of those people who needs to go to McDonalds, it’s still not all that bad a thing to do because you are going to get a little bit of a different experience at a local McDonald’s.

Chris: I assumed I was going to get a loco moco.

Robin: Oh, plenty of loco mocos available too. Positively.

Chris: And we should say that that’s a hamburger but served a little Hawaiian style.

Robin: Yes, with plenty of gravy and egg and it’s a very popular concoction as is a Plate Lunch. And if you happen to come across a little place that you’d like to stop off and they talk about having plate lunches available, typically you will have an entrée you can choose from: a meat or a chicken, a pork, a fish, frequently. And you’ll get two scoops of rice and you’ll get macaroni salad. So you’ll get plenty of carbohydrates to fuel up and there are some places where local people will even decide they want gravy on their macaroni salad. So there’s all sorts of concoctions but a Plate Lunch is a very popular thing to order. And it will not break the bank. So if you’re trying to save up for that extremely special dinner, the Plate Lunch is an ideal thing to order.

Chris: And when we’ve saved up, where we going to do that special dinner?

Robin: Oh, I have to say Alan Wong on King Street in Honolulu. Alan Wong is a chef who really has gone a long way towards sourcing his produce locally, taking a lot of different cultures and creating fusion recipes, Pacific Rim cuisine. And the flavors that he presents and the presentation itself – it is so delicious, so wonderful and so unique and his background, not only his ethnic background but where he has studied, where he has actually worked and his passion for high quality, very flavorful and unique foods – this is the place to go. This is not on the beach. It is on King Street. It is in a nondescript building. It’s upstairs. There’s little valet parking; you just pull in. But when you get up there, it’s not the ambiance you are going for because it’s not overlooking the water. The windows actually look backs towards the mountains. So it’s mauka. But it’s the food. And it’s the Ginger Crusted Onaga – that is just outstanding. Definitely highly recommend that one.

Chris: Ok, and you personally, what’s the best day you’ve had in Oahu?

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Robin: Any day I’m on Oahu is a great day. Because the weather is always very comfortable. The people are very friendly. Whether you are going out touring, either as a visitor or a resident, there’s always something new to explore. And yet while it’s new and emerging, there is a culture that is underlying everything that creates a very, very special place. You are in the United States, but the culture itself makes this an extremely unique destination. It’s the aloha spirit that the local people offer to make you feel welcome. It’s not the “A–LO-HA” that you will hear in shows that are done specifically for the tourists. But with “Aloha” you are sharing spirit. The “HA” is the breathe of life. It is sharing the island. It is sharing the culture. It’s making people feel welcome and wanting them to embrace the culture.

Chris: And I’ve got three more questions? One is: What’s the best resource we should use to plan a trip besides obviously this podcast?

Robin: Oh, absolutely. There is a wonderful website. It’s and that is a great resource for your visit to Oahu.

Chris: You really know you’re in Oahu when ____what?

Robin: When you are flying in and you see Aloha Tower and you see a beautiful shoreline and you see Pearl Harbor and Diamond Head. And many of the flights, by the way, will fly across the island now depending on the direction of the wind. So as you’re flying in, if you’re coming from the mainland, you sit on the side of the plane where you have the letters “HJ” so you’re on that side coming in and you fly on the “AB” side when you’re flying out so you get the views of the island and the beautiful Ko’olau’s and the Wai’anae Range and probably one of my most favorite capitol buildings. I have to say that the Honolulu Capitol, the building itself, is such a tribute to the architect who wanted to employ architectural features that would represent the island. The sides of the building are like the sides of a volcano. The whole building is surrounded by water to remind people that they are in an island nation. The columns that support the building are shaped like the trunks of the palm trees and them coming up and fanning out. The Senate and the House Chambers are the chambers of the sun and the moon. It is just a magnificent capitol building. There is so much to the architecture to really make you know exactly where you are. And then of course there’s going to be the music and the food. Recognizing that you do have teenagers along, there are two places I’m going to suggest if you would really enjoy having a live music experience. One is going to be at the Outrigger Reef. It’s down off Beachwalk and it is next to Halekulani, just behind Halekulani. From 5:30-8:30 in the evening, they have a thing called Kani Ka Pila. It is three words. It’s spelled KANI KA PILA. And Kani Ka Pila in Hawaiian means, “Let’s Make Music”. Each night they have a different artist or group, a local artist or local group featured. And they get up on stage in this very relaxed environment. They’ll get up there wearing their aloha shirts and board shorts and their rubber slippers and they are making music and interacting with the audience. And sometimes other local entertainers drop by and they’ll ask them to come up on stage and jam with them. And it is just great fun and it’s outdoors. It’s just a wonderful setting. You can sit there at the Kani Ka Pila grill and you can have food if you wanted to eat, before or during the performance, or you can just order drinks and pupus, which are appetizers.

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Chris: Right, the pupu platter.

Robin: Which I highly recommend. Well, the artichoke spinach dip is really good.

Chris: Ok.

Robin: But the entertainers that they have; they run the gamut from the Flat Key and that’s Cyril Pahinui, he’s there on Wednesday nights. They have the more modern like Manoa DNA. It’s just wonderful groups and I think your teenagers will enjoy it. For a more classical experience, go next door to Halekulani and Halekulani means “House Befitting Heaven” and it’s wonderful. There is a restaurant in there called “House Without a Key” and in the evenings they have entertainment. It’s classic hula. There are two former Miss Hawaii’s who perform just exquisite hula backed up by a couple of musicians. You are outdoors. You are facing the ocean. The sun is setting off to the side in the west. You have this magnificent backdrop of the ocean and the sun with the hula and music. Very classical. I know that the adults would definitely enjoy it. Depending on the teenagers, a slant toward Hawaiian music, the more traditional classic Hawaiian music and hula, they could really enjoy it as well. So two great places to stop off for live music.

Chris: Excellent. One of my questions I was going to ask you as we were going around for the best snorkel, the best scuba place, I was going to ask you nightlife and then I just blanked.

Robin: Oh and again. All different types of personalities that we have and there are some really hot, hot spots to be. One of the newer hot spots to be is RumFire and that’s located at the Sheridan. You have torches, you have these open fire pots, and rum of course is their specialty. Very, very chic place to go. So for the people who want to be really in with the happening places, this is a tremendous hot spot.

Chris: Excellent. And last question: if someone was mean enough to make you try and summarize Oahu in three words. What three words would you use?

Robin: Sense of place.

Chris: Ok. Robin, thank you so much for coming on the show. We’ll put a link in the Show Notes. If you want to get more help from Robin planning your particular trip to a website for the agency that she’s working with. Thank you so much for your time.

Robin: And thank you so much Chris. Take good care.

Chris: Bye bye.

Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Amateur Traveler Episode 184 Transcript

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Robin: And have a great trip.

I’m going to skip Internet resources today because I didn’t see anything that caught my eye. Last week as part of the episode on Yellowstone, we talked a little bit about stupid tourist tricks and I mentioned a picture that I had where someone was trying to take a picture with an elk. I put that up on today as part of photo Friday. You should check out that post because there are all sorts of comments from other listeners or other readers of the blog who have had similar crazy experiences with seeing people do just really dumb things on vacation especially with wildlife. And speaking of the Yellowstone episode, in case you haven’t already looked it up as I did, Jennifer from Virginia tells us that baby moose’s, that a baby moose is called a calf. I stumbled over the name of that in last week’s episode. The gender names are taken from the cow family of mammals. They are so ugly, they are cute. I heard they have faces only a mother could love.

Mike also left a comment at on the Antarctic episode, the recent one. “It’s an excellent episode. My vacations are usually enjoyed in warm, tropical locations and I have never had a desire to visit Antarctica until now. Thanks for sharing this gem with us. Great pics. I understand the packing dilemma with photo equipment. I tend to share the same tendency to over pack every camera lens and accessory I own. Very enjoyable podcast. Keep up the good work.”

And similarly, Dan from San Diego put a comment on the Venice episode. Venice and the Veneto that we did recently. “Venice is my favorite place to explore. I read Daughter of Venice before going and sought out places in the book except for regrettably the ghetto. I have a favorite café where I order lunch in Italian: 2 calzone, 2 beers, and the best tiramisu I’ve had. We splurged in Murano and bought a multi-colored chandelier. “ “Wow.” “We also paid too much for wine in the Rialto, paid too much for coffee in St. Mark’s Square and stayed in the fourth floor of a hotel with no elevator, all of which just made the trip much more memorable.”

Thanks to Virginia, Mike and Dan for making this show a little more memorable for me. If you want to do what they did, go to and leave a comment on this or on your favorite episode or again go to and share your stupid tourist stories, but good grief a hippo. Or drop me an emai and as always:

Thanks So Much For Listening!

Thanks to Cindy the Amateur Traveler intern for transcribing this episode

Traveling Soon? These useful links will help you prepare for your trip.
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Chris Christensen

by Chris Christensen

Chris Christensen is the creator of the Amateur Traveler blog and podcast. He has been a travel creator since 2005 and has won awards including being named the "Best Independent Travel Journalist" by Travel+Leisure Magazine.

2 Responses to “Travel to Oahu, Hawaii – Episode 184”

Darrell Hickman


Great show on Oahu. Since I rarely fly when I went out there I tried to do as much as possible. Besides what was on the podcast check out the Hilton Hawaiian village. At night there is free entertainment and even fireworks on Friday. Diamond Head get there EARLY remember you are climbing up 800 feet in heat. If you are there later than 7AM you will be sorry. At Pearl Harbor you can just go to the Arizona and it is free. The other things there have an admission fee. Be sure to look for coupons if you want to go to a luau. In 2007 we paid 52 instead of 65 because we had coupons. Word to the wise about Waikiki Beach. Single guys and married guys like me who are walking along Waikiki beach will really love it. Another thing to check out is the statue of King Kamehameha at the State Capitol Building. Oh yeah be prepared to say and read names of words that start with K
If I ever get on another plane I have to go back and hopefully see another island. When I was there I just miss out on Hawaii’s plans on having ferry shuttle service between Oahu and Maui. I am sure it is operational now.



loved the show! being from hawaii and in the hospitality industry, i like to hear what people think about hawaii (not just oahu). showing “aloha” is a big part of who we are here in the islands. we genuinely welcome all visitors and podcasts like this are very encouraging. i myself am not from oahu island and found several pieces of information useful for my next hop on over to the gathering isle.

on another note, the podcast will not download in itunes for some reason. i was able to download it form the site though.

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