Tuesday night was the history/dinner cruise along the coast of Kona down to the Captain Cook memorial. The history was interesting, the food was ok, the weather was beautiful, and the sunset was fantastic!
All street lights in Kona are this weird yellow – we finally found out why – to reduce light pollution for the Observatories on the volcano. It is weird driving with yellow street lights.
Wednesday Val had a member meeting. I went over to check out the fitness center. It was decent, but I mainly used the mat and ball. Nice elliptical and bicycles. Wednesday afternoon we were picked up and taken to the Kahua Ranch where we learned about the history of beef ranches on the island, saw a large pig up close, ate a decent dinner (not their steak) with a good mac-nut pie, then tried some roping and banding before coming back home. It was chilly up there.
Thursday was our meeting in the morning. Then we headed north to Hawi and the beaches. We had a sushi recommendation in Hawi so we planned to do dinner there. We made it to Kawaihae and stopped at the Puukohola Heiau (hey-ow). Then we drove on up to Hawi and decided to stop at Sushi Rock for lunch instead. The food was great and got us going for the hike down to the black-sand beach at Pololu.We hiked down from about 500 ft above sea level to sea level. Then we wandered around on the beach and hiked back up. It was about the same as the hike down to the Kilauea Iki crater on Monday, but it was hotter.
We stopped at the Keokea Beach Park and then drove back to Hawi to have dinner at Sushi Rock again. The sushi was still great! And the mac-nut pie was perfect.
Friday was going to be our south day, but we realized it was our last day with the nice big lanai so we just hung around and read, ate, and enjoyed the breeze. It was a perfect day! That night we drove Anthony down to Keauhou for the Fair-Winds snorkel with the manta ray. He had a great time. Val and I wandered around Kailua and ate at the bar at Huggos.
Saturday we checked out of the Bay Club and checked in at the Hilton. Then we drove toward Kona for a coffee plantation tour at the Hula Daddy plantation (nice clock and good coffee). Next was a stop at the Kekaha Kai beach which was very crowded and windy. We got back to Waikoloa, picked up some sushi at the Island Gourmet Markets and relaxed at the Hilton.
Sunday we drove back to the Waikoloa Baptist Church, with our Operation Christmas Child box that we filled up at Walmart on Tuesday after the cruise. Then back to the Hilton to check out and lay around in the sun (or shade). Dinner at Macaroni Grill and then we returned the rental car and got on our plane. Many hours and a day later we got home with no delays or snags!
It’s chillier here (it was 43 this morning) so we’re trying to get acclimated to that, after 80+ days and 70+ nights for the past week.