We are in Fiji at the moment. It is lovely and warm. It is more civilized than Samoa with shops, cars and people.
We are staying at the Hideaway hotel at the moment and will be here for six nights.
It is a good hotel with a lovely view of the ocean. It has a great swimming pool and good food.
They also have a kids club that we Henry in yesterday but they were not very good and we wont take him there again. He was there for 3 hours and wasn’t offered a drink once!
Henry went to the spa today and got a Henna tattoo wi9ch he is very proud of! They asked him if he wanted a massage, so he booked him self into a kiddy massage at 10am tomorrow! I don’t even get to do that!
The internet is really bad so I can’t upload any pictures. But hopefully at the next place. Then I’ll do the Samoa pictures and the few Fiji pictures that we have taken.
Can’t download any pictures because internet is so slow! Will do a big photo post when we are in a different location.
Savai’I is a lovely island. The people are friendly until the point that they hug you good bye when you leave the hotel.
Yesterday we had a disco night in one of the hotels and they danced all the traditional dances and later some disco dancing. Henry loved it. Stephen also performed as they asked him up on stage to shadow the men. He was shirtless, given a lavalava (sarong) and ended the show by climbing a pole just like the other Samoan man did- they didn’t expect him to be able to do that.
We have been to three hotels and I can recommend all of them. The first one, Stevensons at Manese was an upmarket hotel with a lovely pool and beach. We swam, paddle boarded and canoed in the lagoon right outside there. Henry is so clever he can now paddle board all by himself. He turns and use the paddle to go forward. I’m so proud of him, how far he has come on this trip.The food was nice and we watched a fire show by an 8,10 and a 16-year-old. Amazing!
The second hotel was Va-I-Moana hotel. This hotel was more family friendly but didn’t have a pool. We canoed over to another island from there which took us about 45 minutes there and back. It was hard work. We had the wind against us and when we got there we didn’t realised that is was really stony, so shoes would have been great. Henry and Stephen snorkelled around the island and found lots of starfish which is Henrys favourite at the moment. I just laid on the beach and relaxed as I knew we had to go back at some point and I nearly died on the way there. On the way back we spotted a turtle swimming past us.
Remember when I said in my last post that our cars keep braking down/stop working. Well this time we got a puncture on our tire and also when we visited the stone house our car didn’t want to start again. The guy who worked there helped us and it turned out that it was just the battery that wasn’t working. He fixed it and on we went. That day we went over to do a canopy walk. It was about 30meters up in the air and quite wobbly. But the view was great from the top.
Tomorrow we are leaving to take the ferry back to the other island. And we are staying in one of the hotels near the ferry station.
We drove here and made a few stops along the way. One was a giant blowhole that could shot water a 100m up in the air. And one stop that took us ages to find but was a lovely waterfall that the boys swam in.
While we drove along Stephen turned and looked out of the window at the sea and he stopped the car. He had spotted a whale!! We stopped and looked at the sea for a bit and yes there were a whale out there! Amazing. I have never seen one and this was so exciting! We saw 4-5 whales along the beach.
I really loved this island and I love the Samoans. They are so nice and treat you like you are family.
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!
I can’t upload any more pictures, the internet is too slow.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.