Day 1 – Our Flight To Hawaii and Arrival at Kailua Kona

In 2014, my girls and I headed to Hawaii for first time together. I had been there several times before to visit my friend on the Big Island of Hawaii. Although the flight landed in Oahu, there would be another flight that would take us directly to the Big Island. At the time, my friend had moved to Germany and we were staying at a timeshare that I had called Worldmark The Club. This resort was on Ali’i Drive on the main island, just a mile away from the town of Kailua Kona. We would be staying there for 7 days, and during this time we went to several places on the island that I had been to before, plus we did other activities that were new to all of us. This is a summary of the things that we did each day with pictures and videos to share this trip. It was a fun time, and if you ever do get to visit Hawaii, specifically the Big Island, you might want to consider visiting these places.

Day 1 – Travelling In Hawaii

On the first day, we departed SMF in Sacramento, California and landed at Honolulu International Airport. The flight was about 5 hours. After arriving, we decided to wait for our inter-island flight at a location that led us outside in an enclosed triangular area. It’s really the first place that you get to experience the heat of the island. There are beautiful trees and bushes outside. There are birds that will actually land just a few feet from you, or even land on your hand to take breadcrumbs or bits of doughnut. It’s a great way to acclimate as you are waiting to get on the next flight that will take you to any of the surrounding islands including Kauai, Maui and the Big Island of Hawaii.

Departing Oahu

After about an hour and 1/2, it was time to board our flight. In this much smaller plane, we were able to get window seats on the left side. If you are going to travel Maui or the Big Island, try to get seats on the left side of the plane just in front of the wing. This will give you a great view of Oahu as you are flying out of Honolulu international Airport, allowing you to see some of the more recognizable sites below. This would include Waikiki Beach, Honolulu, and Diamond Head, all of which will be far below. We were able to take pictures and videos as we were taking off, watching the plane go beyond Oahu and above the clouds. We had been in the center row from Sacramento to Oahu in row 43, so it was nice to be more toward the front with the window.

The Flight To The Big Island

The first island that you are going to see as you had toward the Big Island is the island of Molokai. It is an island that is roughly rectangular shaped and will be at an angle as the plane approaches. The distance between Oahu and Molokai is just 22 miles. You will then start to see Lanai off to the right of Molokai. Lanai is a much smaller island, roughly the size of the left half of Maui. You will pass to the right of those islands and start to see Maui in the distance as the plane continues on a southeast trajectory. The next island that you will see is the Big Island of Hawaii which could actually contain the all of the Hawaiian islands put together. You will definitely notice this because you will not be able to see the other side of the Big Island if you are landing at Kona International Airport.

Landing On The Big Island

Kona International Airport

This airport is very different from the Honolulu international Airport. It is significantly smaller. As you are descending to land, you are going to see a desolate landscape created by lava the that has flowed and solidified near the coast. You can actually go on tours where the lava is flowing into the ocean. The airport was built in a lava field, and as you land and pull up to the area where you will depart, you are not leaving the plane to go into a building. You are going to descend the steps down onto the tarmac, and you will experience a significant change in temperature. Kona international Airport is very nice. It is small and laid-back. It will only take you a few minutes to get through to the other side where you will either take a shuttle to the rental car facility down the road, or you will get a taxi that will take you to your hotel.

Our Resort

Although our Worldmark The Club resort does have many different locations throughout the world, some that are extremely extravagant, this one is special because of its location. It is located on a Ali’i Drive. This is the main highway that runs adjacent to the edge of the West Coast of the island, specifically where the small town of Kailua is located. The resort was actually very nice, providing us with a two bedroom suite. There was a master bedroom and bathroom in my girls had the other large room which had two separate twin beds. It was like a large two bedroom apartment, and this is where we would stay during our vacation in this tropical paradise.

View from Ali’i Drive

Walking Around In Kailua

We arrived later in the day so our activities we are focused on unpacking and getting out to walk around. This is a beautiful area of Hawaii with a nice combination of nature and small town civilization that has a very relaxing feel. We took a walk down the road after this long flight and were able to see and hear the ocean to her left. This is a town where cars and bicycles are constantly mingling together, along with those that are jogging for exercise and tourists just like us soaking in the beautiful sites. There are small stores as you walk further down. There are very nice restaurants including Bubba Gump Shrimp Co. on the left side of the road complete with the bench. There are enormous trees with birds that are constantly chirping right over the main highway. By the time you come to the corner where a Ali’i Drive turns to the right, you will see the Courtyard King Kamehameha’s Kona Beach Hotel, a location where you can see where they have their luau’s and cruise ships often the distance that part of their daily. By the time we took a tour of this area of Kailua, the sun was beginning to set, and we started walking back to our room.

The sun set, slipping into the ocean, making our first day on the Big Island a complete success. Once we arrived back at the resort, we drove to the local store and prepared dinner in our kitchen. After talking for some time, we knew we had to go to sleep to prepare for our second day on the Big Island of Hawaii early in the morning.