NEW ADVENTURE – HAWAII BIG ISLAND
Traveling with Aupairadventures is just one of the things you should do at least once in your life. For me, it was time to see the world again and leave the country to make new experiences. My journey started 11968 km away in Germany. My flights were more or less okay and after two days I took the first step on this amazing island. I do recommend traveling by yourself, but when it comes to adventures you should really take advantage of the APA tour. In the following I will tell my personal experience from July 2016. To be said, there was a huge storm just the week before I arrived, so our tour was the other way around.
The tour starts in front of the ‚Uncle Billys Kona Bay Hotel‚ where most of the aupairs from the tour stayed the night, but I totally recommend the ‚Koa Wood Hale‚. I payed like 23$ per night and it was such a great experience. It’s not like a hotel at all, but more like a home instead. I should say that I’m not a picky person, so don’t expect a luxury bed and breakfast.
I find that you can already recognize aupairs from a very far distance. How they walk, how they dress and their amount of luggage. Sometimes I like to guess which nationality is walking towards me (and I’m almost always right). So we all sit in the same boat again: New place, new people and the same interests. After answering the typical questions: ‚Where did you live as an aupair?‘, ‚How many kids did you have?‘ and ‚Is this your travelmonth now?‘ we get together really quickly. With so many girls there are always discussions during the tour, but in the beginning everyone is just super, duper nice!
It was so hot! In Germany was no summer at all (not until then) and suddenly it feels like an outdoor sauna 24/7. After going grocery shopping (at least 2 full carts of awesome food) we drove directly to the campground right at the beach where we got to set up our camp for the first time. It was super easy, because the tents build up almost by themselves and give room for about 3 or 4 people. Since it was such a hot day, we decided to go in the water and spend the first afternoon there. Preston and Mitchell bought like 30 inflatables for the tour so we could have some fun while paddling in the water… I really liked the beerpong air mattress! After dinner, we had some drinks in the sunset and talked, talked and talked to get to know each other.
The Hawaii Big Island Tour included all meals (we only went to a restaurant the last night) Preston and Mitchell went to the grocery store when we had our off time and bought whatever we needed for breakfast, lunch and dinner. We had different groups every day who wanted to help setting up camp, cook or clean. I just spent some money for coffee or ice cream on the way.
DAY 2 – Pololu Valley
Who has ever had a morning swim in the Hawaiian Ocean and an outdoor shower afterwards? It is awesome! We only stayed one night at this campground, so we packed together after breakfast with the awesome view of the blue horizon and left to Pololu Valley.
Look at the landscpape… it just looks super incredible and I really love these hidden places. We parked the van and took a hike down to ‚Black Sand Beach‘. The hike was pretty deep, but on the way down you usually down think about going up again. The hike was worth it: There was actual Black Sand and lots of rocks and stones… It was such a great movie location for Jurassic Park or Hawaii Five O or so. Yup, and then we had to go all the way up again…. 😀 Good thing it was lunchtime after that.
Coconuts, Pineapple and Banana
Snack time! It was not like normal fruits at all – it was heaven. So fresh and yummy! We tasted all kinds of fruits and watched the tiny woman cutting them with this crazy knife…The coconut was very cool, but I didn’t like the water. My favorite was the pineapple 🙂
The Akaka Falls are in the North of the Big Island and are dropping down over 400 ft! Walking torwads the Falls is also a little adventure, because there are so many weird flowers and plants and it does look like a jungle.
Geothermal Hot Pond
With ALL of our inflatables we crashed into the outdoor pool, which is heated by volcanic activity underneath surrounded by coconut trees and impressive stones. We just enjoyed the warm water and relaxed on the funny inflatable pizza, doughnut or turtle.
DAY 3 – Hawaii Volcanoes National Park
It was always important to have water with us, but on this day it would have cost our life if we haven’t. We walked through the landscape of the results of hundreds of thousands of years of volcanism. We got to explore a lava tube and walked right through the middle of a crater. It was a cool day and typical for the Big Island since it is a Volcano Island.
This new campground was also really nice, but pretty cold though. It is placed in the Volcano National Park at a higher level and we needed to wear sweaters. We had a pavilion where we cooked and spent time together. Kelsey really wanted her hairs to be short…! After dinner we drove to the lava tube and got to see actually lava in the volcano. Also we heard that in this night, the lava touched the water, but nobody was allowed to access the beach where it happened.
GREEN SAND BEACH
Ka Lea is the Southern Most Point of the Hawaiian Islands and actually of the entire United States. Our destination today is the Papakolea Beach or Green Sand Beach. The Green Sand Beach doesn’t sound super ecxiting, but it definetly was! Cars are not allowed to drive up to where we wanted to go, so we did a little hike. Actually it wasn’t that little, because it takes one hour each way to get to the beach. The landscape was just incredibly beautiful and so different from what I have seen before. If you don’t want to walk the distance there is a shuttle service that takes you through ‚the desert‘. It wasn’t really the distance that bothered me, but the sand flying against my camera and body… as soon as I saw the photos afterwards, I was SO happy to have left the camera out to take photos.
The Best Beach Ever
I was so sticky and sandy from the hike that I just wanted to go in the water. So I took my gorpo and ran in.. a wave came and pushed me on the ground so hard that I was drowning a bit. OH MY GOOOOSH! AGAIN!! That was so much fun! I was in the water for hours and ‚played‘ in the water… To bad we weren’t allowed to do cliff jumping there. Since it was still pretty windy we snuggled together in a little cave to eat lunch and rest. I heard that the waves are always pretty high, but on that day even higher! For sure, it’s not a beach to take beautiful photos or get some tan, but it’s definetly an adventure.
THE COFFEE FARM
Preston and Mitchell always had some surprises for us and this one was one of the best! Coffee and Cookies and so much more… I can’t find words to describe how amazing this coffee tasted! Even without milk and sugar. The woman behind the desk let us try several nuts and cookies, honey and the coffee of course for free. FOR FREE! We were so happy!
Could somebody please have told me how awesome snorkeling is? It is kind of a new world down there. Well, don’t forget that you actually can’t dive too deep and still catch a breath through the snorkel. I got used to the salty water though hahah. All I wanted was diving down there and see what lives and grows there. It also looked funny from above when about 20 butts hung out the surface, because everybody was so amazed by the underwaterworld. I was hoping to meet a turtle or even a dolphin, but we weren’t lucky that day. There was one turtle close to the coast when we already had left the water. Still awesome!
Kailua, Kona City
Coming back to where the tour has started felt kind of weird, because it was almost the end of the tour. Somehow we were sad, but then we heard about the hotel that we are going to stay for the last two nights! Amaaaaaazing! After those nights in the tent (which was honestly not bad) a room with real beds were just like paradise. We walked through the city and had some really sugary ice cones and dinner together. And of course we took advantage of the hotel’s pool 🙂
Pu’uhonua o Honaunau
Excuse me – PARADISE! Well, so what can I say about this..? It was sooooooo beautiful. We could already see it from the van and we were running to this beach. Look at the water! LOOK! It was so warm and clear. I remember taking some photos real quick and then just go in and swim and snorkel.. One hour later I came back to the shore and was still flashed. This is how I have imagined Hawaii and actually I have never seen something like this before in my life. Everybody was either in the water or sunbathing in the soft sand.
The week was over so quickly. As always when you enjoy something. But when I look back now and see all the photos and remember the moments attached to them I really think that this was a perfect week in every way. We spent the last afternoon at the beach in the pu’uhonua o honaunau National Park where sea turtles were hanging out. We were not allowed to get too close or even touch them, but taking selfies was ok 🙂 Preston and Mitchell brought us pizza to the beach which was super great and we enjoyed the sunset together which was also perfect.
BYE BYE HAWAII
The next day Preston and Mitchell took everybody to the airport. Some of us stayed longer, because of late flights and enjoyed the pool a little longer. Saying bye is always shitty, but saying bye to my favorite Emily was awfully awful! Of course I cried! The week was perfect and will always be in my memories. Thanks to everybody who was part of it ❤
Watch this amazing week in a video. Once again, not the photos and not even the video could ever show how amazing it really was! ❤