Beautiful but rainy Samoa.

We are in Samoa at the moment and we have to buy internet cards that they always run out of, so we haven’t had internet for about a week.

I will write about Samoa in 3 different parts. First part will be the island Upolu. We were there for about a week. To start with we stayed at the Sheraton and then LeUaina Resort. The Sheraton was nice but not very personal, it could have been anywhere. And the food wasn’t great and it took forever to get it, at least 1 hour every time. But the LeUaina Beach resort is a lovely little family run two-star hotel right on the beach. The staff are friendly and they try hard to make you feel at home.  We meet some South Africans and New Zealanders there that were hilarious so we had drinks with them most evenings while the kids were either dancing/playing house or watching a film.

The island is spectacular. It rained every day but it didn’t matter. We drove round Upolu and it is beautiful, it is wild and natural and there are no tourists there, well some but not nearly as many as in Hawaii. You drive through villages and you don’t see any cars only natives and dogs. Their houses are open fales (hut) and you can see straight through them. No one has anything of value and it is lovely seeing all the people gathering around outside playing with their children rather than watch tv or talking on their phones. I haven’t seen any one with a phone at all.

In the beginning of the week we went to a few waterfalls around the island and they were nice. The best one Fuipisia Falls was when we had to hike in mud to get there. Henry doesn’t normally like to even get his clothes wet so I was nervous about the mud. But he thought the whole thing was funny. Especially when he got stuck and kept going with his shoe left behind.

 It was a 10 min walk there and well worth it. A beautiful waterfall where you could walk and stand above it. I took a few pictures of Stephen standing there.

We also stopped at To Sua Ocean Trench which is a giant sink hole. You can climb down a ladder in it and then swim. Henry was dying to do it but it was too slippery. Stephen went down it and swam in to the other cave as well.

On of the days we went to go on a small island outside but the boat was broken so we couldn’t get there. So instead we went down the coast and ended up on a beautiful beach with a lovely fale. We stayed most of the day and snorkelled and sunbathed.

 When we got back to the hotel the car broke! There has been something wrong with all the cars that we have had on this holiday. With breakdowns, etc. I’m starting to wonder if it is the person driving the car….

 We did manage to get to the small island the next day. I called the people that was going to take us to the island and the boat was ok so we have spent the whole day there. It is a very small island with maybe 10 fales along the beach. We saw turtles going over there but none when we were snorkelling. But we did see some fish out there and Stephen got chased by one that keep hitting his mask and I got bitten by one. It was a lovely day but it rained the whole day. Didn’t stop us from doing things though.

 We are on Savaii at the moment, we took the ferry here with the car and are having a great time. The sun is out and we basically got the resort to our self. I am definitely recommending Samoa to anybody!

It’s green, it’s rainy, it’s lovely.
At one of the waterfalls there was some amazing flowers, red, white, pink, yellow- you name it.
At one of the waterfalls there was some amazing flowers, red, white, pink, yellow- you name it.
Look at this flower, how beautiful!
Look at this flower, how beautiful!

 

This is SAmoa all over.
This is Samoa all over.

I can’t upload any more pictures, the internet is too slow.

 

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Good bye Hawaii and Hello Samoa!

Oh how I will miss Hawaii!

Henry even said on the last day “Mum can we please come back here? Please!” I very quickly said yes 😊

Hawaii was everything that I thought/ hoped it would be. It was beautiful, peaceful, relaxing and friendly. Both Stephen and I said that if we came back to Hawaii we would spend less time in Waikiki and most of our time in Kauai. Waikiki was nice with all the restaurants and shops and the beach was nice. But it is also very busy with lots of tourist everywhere. There is a queue at every restaurant and you will have to wait at least 20 minutes before getting in. While Kauai is nice and quiet. There aren’t many restaurants to choose from but it is friendly and homemade.

 We had one night and two days in Waikiki and then it was time to leave Hawaii for this time. We put Henry to sleep at 8pm and packed all the bags up and then woke him again at 10.30pm when the taxi arrived. Our flight was at 1.25 in the morning on the Friday. He then slept all the way to Samoa where we arrived at 5.30 in the morning on the Saturday. But here is the twist- it was only a 6 hours flight!! We lost an entire day because of the time zones and crossing the date line. Crazy.

 We are in Samoa now and have got 20 days here.

I want to say that we are having a nice relaxing time but that is not the case. Henry had a massive blowout this morning on the way to breakfast because of a pair of sunglasses. He screamed the place down and Stephen had to take him back to the room. Since then he has been in a bad mood and winged and grumped.

 Yesterday was lovely though, we swam in the pool, rented paddle boards and borrowed a canoe. Henry even managed to stand up on the paddleboard all the way in. We all fell fast asleep and slept through a thunderstorm that passed over here. Today it has rained and been quite bad weather all day which hasn’t helped Henrys mood.

 Hopefully he will wake up in a better mood tomorrow.

Here we go. The resort in the background.
Here we go. The resort in the background.
Henry on the canoe.
Henry on the canoe.
Paddle boarding
Paddle boarding
The canoes are for free and you can borrow one as much as you want.
The canoes are for free and you can borrow one as much as you want.
Henry loved the paddle boards.
Henry loved the paddle boards.
His balance was amazing, he just got up on the board and then just stood there.
His balance was amazing, he just got up on the board and then just stood there.
Henry took the paddle and helped me in :)
Henry took the paddle and helped me in 🙂

The road to Hana and camping

This is the Black beach in Waianapanapa. The most beautiful beach I have ever seen.
This is the Black beach in Waianapanapa.
The most beautiful beach I have ever seen.

The highway to Hana has always been on the to do list. And when we planned this trip we looked into camping there. We had booked three nights camping along the “Hana Highway” but it was horrible weather so we cancelled and rebooked for one night.

Stephen went and collected the tent and equipment two nights ago and yesterday morning we set out for Hana. The camping gear was fully equipped with tent, two blow-up beds, sheets, pillows, blankets and torches. Great service!

 We had considered what we wanted to do etc. and read lots of different suggestions. But when you are on that road that snakes around bends with jungle on one side and sea on the other and 1500 cars in front of you (that doesn’t have a 3-year-old so they are early on the road rather than late). Then you stop where you can.  There are a lot of mind-blowing waterfalls that you can hike to, swim in and dive into. The view along the way is incredible and the beaches are the reason why you want to go to Hawaii.

 With our guidebook in our hands we tried our best to stop at a few places but failed until we found one waterfall that wasn’t as well-known at the others. So, we parked the car alongside the road, walked passed the sign saying to not enter! (apparently only there to scare people) and hiked for about 15 minutes until we came to a beautiful waterfall with only a few other people in it. Henry wanted to go swimming so he and Stephen jumped in. It was freezing. They swam over to the waterfall and Stephen had a few jumps in front of it. And then hiked back to the car. Beautiful.

Hikning through the jungle to the waterfalls.
Hiking through the jungle to the waterfalls.

 

Stephen jumped for joy.
Stephen jumped for joy.
A 15 mintue hike up and down in the rainforest is great excercise!
A 15 minute hike up and down in the rainforest is great exercise!

 We stopped at one other waterfall where you could swim but we didn’t bother because it was so busy.

After that we had lunch and then we went to see where we were going to spend the night camping. It was a fantastic location for camping. We had the famous black beach right in front of us! I cannot describe how beautiful this place was! Just amazing.

We put our tent up and then went for a swim. It was packed with people of course. After that we went looking for some dinner which isn’t easy in Hana on a Sunday night. But we found a burrito wagon. Later on, when we were nearly ready for bed we took our torches and went down to the beach again. This time we were alone and we went into a cave on the beach and tried the torches out and then on to the beach.  Henry thought he was a real explorer.

It took about 10 minutes to put it up and a bout 30 to get it back down again!
It took about 10 minutes to put it up and a bout 30 to get it back down again!
Black and white.
Black and white.
About the be thrown in the water.
About the be thrown in the water.

 We had an ok night as Henry woke up at 2am asking all his camping/tent questions that could not wait until morning. It was his first time and he loved it. I think it will probably be one of our holidays every year when we are back in the UK.

 In the morning we took our breakfast down to the beach and we were the only ones there. The boys had a swim and I took some pictures. They waves were too much for me. At one point, there was one wave that went over their heads and swept Henrys armbands and goggles away. Luckily Henry was ok.

All alone on the beach
All alone on the beach
Breakfast time
Breakfast time.

 We drove the other way home and had a few stops. One of them was at a Red beach! We hiked all the way there but when we got there we decided the last part was too dangerous for us to make. But I did get some lovely pictures of it.

This is the red beach
This is the red beach

" take a picture of me mum" I'm smiling"
” take a picture of me mum” I’m smiling”
Hiking to the red beach was quite hard.
Hiking to the red beach was quite hard.

 According to the guidebooks the road on the south is bumpy, unpaved and “dangerous”. But we didn’t find it too bad at all. The views on this side was even better than the one on the north side.

The view on the way home.
The view on the way home.
Our super cool car here on Maui.
Our super cool car here on Maui.

 A wonderful experience and camping is definitely something we will do again. The road to Hana is amazing and I advise anyone visiting Maui to do it, especially the camping at the black beach.

 

Luau- Feast at Lele and a boat trip to Molokini and Turtle Town.

A couple of evenings ago we had planned to go to the “Feast at Lele”. It is a Luau that is a five-course dinner with dances from some of the Polynesian islands. Amazing! It was small dishes from four islands. Hawaii, New Zealand, Tahiti and Samoa. And with every course we had dances from that particular island, it was so cool. The tables were right on the beach and we had unlimited drinks.

The show started with a canoe coming in with the ladies and the men stood on the beach welcoming them by blowing big conch shells.

Henry thought it was really exciting as the shows went on and it got darker and darker. The last dance was a fire dance- Henry was clapping his hands and whoop whopping.

We got home at 21.45 and Henry was not asleep until 22.30.

The canoe comes in and they welcome them by blowing the shell.
The canoe comes in and they welcome them by blowing the shell.
Magical
Magical
Stephen and his girly drink on the beach.
Stephen and his girly drink on the beach.
They started with dances from Hawaii.
They started with dances from Hawaii.
It was such a great evening and we all had a lovely time.
It was such a great evening and we all had a lovely time.
The tables were just on the beach, you could see all the stars over the water when the sun went down.
The tables were just on the beach, you could see all the stars over the water when the sun went down.

Dance from Tahiti
Dance from Tahiti
The finish dance was a fire dance.
The finish dance was a fire dance.
Great evening
Great evening

 Today we got up at 05.45 in the morning and headed to the marina. We had booked a snorkelling tour to Molokini and Turtles Town. Molokini is an old volcano with only half the crater still protruding from the sea.

It was really nice, it took about an hour to get to the first stop and we had about 1 hour in the water snorkelling around. Great spot, there were lots of fishes and we even saw an octopus. Henry had a wet suit and a floating vest on and was fine in the water. He swam around and saw everything that we saw. When we got back on the boat he had a go at the slide at the back. It was a pretty high slide that came of the boat and it had a big drop at the end- Henry loved it!

 The second stop was Turtle Town and we did spot a turtle. By this point Henry was tired so me and him went back on the boat so Stephen could have a good swim by himself.  We only just got on the boat when it started to feel a bit chaotic. The captain was shouting at the crew to get everyone out of the water because the wind had picked up and the waves were growing. The crew tried to get everyone’s attention and get them onboard. The captain then shouted that they couldn’t be at the back because they would get hit by the boat. Stephen was still out by this point.

After a lot of shouting everyone was onboard and the captain speeded out of there. The waves were quite big on the way home but we managed not to be sick!

Molokini in front.
Molokini in front.

Henry and me under water.
Henry and me under water.
Octopus!
Octopus!

Ready to go!
Ready to go!

 

Stephen and Henry.
Turtle! It was really big and swam up to the surface and then down again.
Turtle! It was really big and swam up to the surface and then down again.
Stephen and Henry

 We also found a nice spot to go snorkelling the other day when we were driving around. It was a little walk through some lovely jungle to get there. When we got there, it was a stony/rocky beach. Stephen said it was one of the best snorkel swims he ever had.

We have also been body boarding at one of the most dangerous beaches here in Maui, not that we knew at the time.  It had a pretty wicked surf break right on the shore and Henry had a few wipe-outs but came up giggling each time. And Henry has also learned how to swim under the water now, he can do about 6 meters. But then he needs to come up for air. He doesn’t have the strength to swim on top of the water yet but I think that will come before this holiday is finished.

At the end of this jungle there is a beach.
At the end of this jungle there is a beach.

Tomorrow we are going camping in Hana.

Blowholes and magical sunsets on Maui.

We are all sitting on our balcony which overlooks the pool and the sea. I’m drinking a glass of wine, Stephens has a beer and Henry has a chocolate milk. The sun is going down and it is all very peaceful.

Look at the colour of this sunset. Isn't it amazing?
Look at the colour of this sunset. Isn’t it amazing?

 We arrived in Maui yesterday but we didn’t really have time to do anything bar a quick dip in the pool. Our evening meal was a McDonalds as we didn’t have time to go shopping and couldn’t be bothered going for a proper sit down restaurant. It was hard work trying to get here. The airport in Kauai was chaos! It was nearly 45-50 minutes to check in and we had to run to the gate when we got in.

When we landed the pilots asked Henry if he wanted to come in to them and look at all the buttons, but he said no. But when we had walked off the plane and was on the way to the bags he then decided that he wanted to see the pilots! He had a huge paddy and screamed and kicked all the way to the bags. We kept saying that it is too late now you should have said yes! But being 3 years old, you just don’t understand that. Fortunately, there were 2 pilots walking past as we sat and waited for our bags (who took an hour to arrive) and they talked to Henry and gave him a pin badge just like the one they were wearing!

 Today has been better.

We have booked a few trips and changed our camping trip. The tail end of a hurricane is going past the east coast and the weather is not great.  I do not want to go camping in a jungle for 3 days if it rains constantly! So, we are now staying longer in an apartment on the west side and camping only for one night in Hana rather than 3. It works better this way I think. If Henry really loves it we can look into doing it again in maybe Australia. Maybe.

We then went on a little road trip up the coast to find a Blowhole. And wow! We found one and it was huge! And the area around it looked and felt like you were on the moon, it was beautiful!

We were there for maybe an hour, climbing and exploring. Henry climbing all the way down and all the way up again.

 Tomorrow night we have booked a Luau. There will be lots of food and a fire dance to finish off!

A blowhole on Maui, look how big it is. There are clear signs that say don't get too close, people just don't care.
A blowhole on Maui, look how big it is. There are clear signs that say don’t get too close, people just don’t care.

Henry did really well climbing down to the hole and then back up again.
Henry did really well climbing down to the hole and then back up again.

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We asked Henry to pose in front of the water but he just would smile. This is one of the better once! haha
We asked Henry to pose in front of the water but he just would smile. This is one of the better efforts! haha
Lets go!
Lets go!

 

Look at the texture of this rock, it is so cool to see how the lava has dried up.
Look at the texture of this rock, it is so cool to see how the lava has cooled down.

Henry really tries when we are out and about.
Henry really tries when we are out and about.

 

"Who's the king of the castle"
“Who’s the king of the castle”