Last week Lynne and I returned from our trip to Hawaii and San Francisco. It was an amazing trip of a lifetime for us both. Here’s our Hawaii and San Francisco trip itinerary and how we fitted everything in to our two weeks.
Folks, thanks so much for dropping by for the start of the review of our recent trip to Hawaii and San Francisco.
Research proves that if you want to be happier it’s simple to do.
You buy less material things and spend more money on experiences, like travel. That’s what Lynne and I choose to do.
We hope that by writing about our trip to Hawaii and San Francisco you’ll be inspired to travel too.
Read more about how we make our lifestyle choices in the 80/20 way – the simple way.
Read our top tips for budget travel in 10 ways to make your holiday spending stretch further.
Hawaii And San Francisco Trip Itinerary
As we have so many experiences and photographs to share with you there is NO WAY that I could write them all up in this one post otherwise you’ll still be here at Christmas scrolling through them all!
So I thought the best thing to do was to share our itinerary here and over the coming weeks link the trips I mention below to the actual dedicated posts for more pictures and a proper review.
How does that sound to you?
Let’s get started!
Day 1: Saturday 18th March – Glasgow to Maui, Hawaii
Travel to Hawaii
Our first day was all about flying.
Flying roughly 7000 miles!
We set off from Glasgow Airport at 07.55, changed to another air plane at London Heathrow an hour later and then flew to San Francisco.
The time in San Francisco when we arrived there was 15.00. So that would have been 22.00 UK time. There was still one more flight to go!
So another change to another air plane and we caught the 18.25 from San Francisco and arrived in Maui 21.00, Hawaii time. That would have been 07.00 Sunday Morning UK time!
Basically we had been travelling for 25 hours!
Day 2: Sunday 19th March – Maui
We stayed at the Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa (above) whilst in Maui.
It was a superb hotel with great facilities like several swimming pools and a gym which looked out over the ocean.
We certainly noticed the temperature change. When we left Glasgow it was nearly snowing (which it did a few days after leaving). In Maui it was 28°C / 82°F!
I enjoyed my first proper American hamburger and Hawaiian black rock beer at Leilani’s On the Beach whilst Lynne loved her fish tacos.
Otherwise this Sunday was a day of rest, checking the place out and catching up on sleep.
After all, we were to be up very early the next morning……..
Day 3: Monday 20th March – Maui
Haleakala Volcano Sunrise
An extremely early rise! We got up at 02.15 for our bus pick up at 03.10 which met up with another bus an hour later which then climbed the 10,000ft dormant volcano to the already busy parking area to view the amazing sunrise.
They say that no trip to Maui is complete without going to see the breaktaking Haleakala national park sunrise.
We echo that. It was like being on top of the world.
Day 4: Tuesday 21st March – Maui
After trekking to see the mountain gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda in 2015 we have become obsessed with as much wildlife experience as is possible on our holidays.
Whale watching in Maui is one of the most popular activities to do in Hawaii and another trip that you just cannot miss!
I must have taken hundreds of photographs during the two hours of the Lahaina Whale Watch experience.
It’ll take me a couple of weeks to whittle those down so check back here where I’ll link to them.
Day 5: Wednesday 22nd March – Maui
Road Trip On The Hana Highway
We chose a Jungle Tours to take us on the road to Hana as well as to deliver us to our next destination.
Alec, the owner/guide and driver of our Jeep has lived on Maui for 20 years and knows all of the very best scenery and experiences along this historic route.
This was an enchanting and amazing day trip for us both through the rain forest made even more special by Alec. His enthusiasm and knowledge of the area were priceless.
Check out “Bucket List The Road To Hana” to see some of those amazing pictures!
Day 6: Thursday 23rd March – Maui
Our first morning at the Travaasa Hana gave me another spectacular sunrise to watch.
We had booked horse riding for this day but unfortunately it was was cancelled as one of the horses was lame.
Not to worry, we went for a walk instead!
It was a little overcast and there were rain showers but I’d still rather be watching these ocean waves in the rain than sitting in an office at work! What about you?
BTW – if you look closely at the end of the video you’ll see Lady Lynne scurrying up a path only to find out it’s a dead end. 😆
Day 7: Friday 24th March – Maui
Travaasa Hana – Another day chilling out in paradise!
Sometimes it’s just nice not doing a lot.
We had planned that our time at the Travaasa Hana would be our “down time”.
We continued to do just that, chill out, a bit of walking and spending quality time with each other in this heaven on earth.
Day 8: Saturday 25th March – Maui to Honolulu, Oahu
Back on the road again
So it was back down the Hana Highway this day, this time in a taxi to get us to the airport for our flight to Honolulu.
The sun was out and it was a bonus being able to experience the amazing scenery again from our taxi, albeit that we didn’t stop.
It was only a short 30 minutes flight from the main airport in Maui, Kahului Airport, to the island of Oahu and Honolulu our next destination.
It was good to be travelling during the day and the see the islands from the sky rather than the dead of night!
We arrived at our accommodation, Trump International Waikiki mid afternoon.
Now, this accommodation was booked way before Mr Trump became president so no derogatory comments please! ;-).
It was also accommodation that came with a kitchen I could cook in which was handy to help us save money and to keep to our budget!
Day 9: Sunday 26th March – Honolulu
Pearl Harbor Day Trip
Pearl Harbor has always been a place I wanted to visit.
Being from a naval family I’ve always known what happened here since I was very young and pledged I would get here one today. And this day I finally made it.
The museums tell the whole history of the run up to the attack on Pearl Harbor. They cover the story not just from the U.S. side but also from the Japanese side and the whole tragedy of war.
The grave of U.S.S. Arizona marks the spot of where 1177 sailors and marines were killed by the surprise Japanese attack. It was particularly moving.
More on Pearl Harbor in a separate post.
Day 10: Monday 27th March – Honolulu
Waikiki Beach And Laou
Today we walked up and down Waikiki Beach and watched some of the surfers who are far braver than I could ever be what with me having a phobia of deep water……
But anyway you can’t go to Hawaii without going to see a traditional Hawaiian Luau can you?
We had pre-booked ours at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort. There was lot’s of traditional Hawaiian dancing, food and music including hula.
I’ve got some blurry photographs of that Luau we went to, to show you too!
Day 11: Tuesday 28th March – Hawaii to San Francisco
Travel to San Francisco
Alas today it was time to say bye bye Hawaii. We really hope to be back one day!
I think we were both taken aback by the beauty of the place and the friendliness of the people, but it was time to go to move on. Reluctantly.
We were moving on to our next stop after a 6 hour flight, our final destination San Francisco.
We arrived at our accommodation, The Westin St Francis on Union Square (above) at 22.20. We were both pretty tired and needing sleep after the late night at the Laou previously.
We also noticed the 10°C drop in temperature!
Fortunately with the hotel being right slap bang in the middle of San Francisco we wouldn’t have to move far in the morning after catching our sleep to begin sight seeing.
Day 12: Wednesday 29th March – San Francisco
A friend who had previously visited San Francisco recommended Lori’s Diner for brunch. It was a good recommendation as we ended up eating there twice whilst staying in the city.
Today we also got our 2 day Hop On Hop Off Bus Tour tickets. For us, with limited time, that was the best and quickest way to see as much as possible of San Francisco.
Had we had longer we would have done much more walking about the city itself. I wold have so liked to have had the time to walk over the Golden Gate Bridge.
We also had dinner at The Cheesecake Factory.
Ever since we came back from Las Vegas we’ve talked so much about going back the The Cheesecake Factory and we weren’t disappointed!
Both Lynne and I had salad for mains thinking that we’d have enough room for our cheesecake, ha ha, I have no idea what gave me that impression. I had to get Lynne to finish my Snickers Bar Chunks and Cheesecake ;-)!!
Day 13: Thursday 30th March – San Francisco
Alcatraz Day Trip And Bus To Sausalito
We had also pre-booked our Alcatraz trip prior to leaving Scotland. It was booked for today at 11.00.
It’s just as well it was pre-booked as day trips were sold out until Monday, when we would be back in Scotland!
My best advise for making sure you get to do the trips you want is to make sure you pre-book any trips before going on a trip like this, it save for any disappointment.
I was really excited to see Alcatraz, but not half as much as Lynne who is obsessed with crime books and that sort of stuff so this really was her thing.
This evening’s dinner was at Calzone’s Italian Restaurant in the Italian quarter. Both of us enjoying authentic pizza’s mine being one with a selection of different sliced Italian sausages on top. Yum yum!
Day 14: Friday 31st March – San Francisco
This day I decided to have a hot dog for breakfast. And why not? I was on holiday and had just done a quick run at the gym so I was hungry and had earned it!
Talking of gym’s, we always make use of the hotel gym facilities wherever we stay. Even if just for a quick run as it saves the complete guilt trip on returning home.
Just like I’d seen in all those American films that feature San Francisco, we took a little cable car to “climb half way to the stars”, well to get us to lunch at Pier 39 actually.
I’ll update more about that lunch in a dedicated San Francisco post.
As this was our final full day in San Francisco and of our epic two week trip too, we ended off by having a final slice of cheesecake, naturally from The Cheesecake Factory!
Day 15: Saturday 1st April – San Francisco to Glasgow
Travel home to Glasgow
Sadly it was our final brunch at Lori’s Diner before our shuttle came to pick us up at 13.00 to take us to the airport.
On the flight home I watched Rick Stein ‘s Long Weekends. As you may know I love Rick Stein anyway, but that series which featured Copenhagen and Vienna and was certainly inspiration for some future trips!
Wow, well that’s the short (short?? 🙂 ) re-cap for now, to be expanded over the next few weeks.
It’s taken me all day to write this up but it was great to check back on my notes and to remember all the finer details and memories.
Memories are irreplaceable aren’t they?
I hope that if ever you are travelling to any of these destinations some of these details might prove useful to you.
And please, if you’ve enjoyed / been inspired by this remember that time is passing us by and you’ve got to get out there now before it’s too late.
Don’t get to the end of your days only to regret the experiences you didn’t have, but wished you had.