Lauren and I surprised the ladies with a day trip to the Big Island of Hawaii! A quick 40 minute flight to Kona. Our trip started in Kona and we drove the southern route to Hilo. Aren't they cute with their matching tote bags. First stop was to rearrange some coral graffiti. This time we honored Father's Day. I did the "D" on the right and Lauren did the "D" on the left.
Picture of Mom and Gale making their way across the lava rock.
Our flight from Honolulu was very early. We made our way to Kona and had breakfast seaside. This picture is taken in town where the swimming portion of the Iron Man competition takes place.
Lauren and I made sure we stopped for Donkey Balls, a Big Island candy which included a whole macadamia nut covered in chocolate.
They had many different varieties of balls including: salty balls, blue balls, flaky balls, dirty balls, half ass balls and dingle berries.
Here we are at a Kona coffee farm. Enjoying a few free samples of coffee.
We enjoyed a tour and learned all about how coffee is processed. We even tasted the fruit of a ripe coffee bean. Very sweet!
Stopped by the painted church that Lauren and I previously discovered on our first trip to the Big Island.
Black Sand Beach. There were 3 turtles on the beach that day. The travel book says they like to use this beach to nest.
Can I buy a vowel? I'd like "O".
Here we are with 2 of the turtles. A Japanese tour guide yelled at us because she thought we were too close, but we were clearly 10 to 15 feet away from the turtles. I told her what's up! And then proceeded to go on turtle patrol, found a few tourists actually touching the turtles. I informed them that sea turtles are a threatened species and shouldn't be harassed in any way.
There isn't a lot on the highway from Kona to the volcano. So we had a creative lunch in the car after raiding a grocery store. We enjoyed many free samples from the bakery. Lemon cake was a favorite among the group. Then we made our way to the Volcano National Park.
Me at the active crater. I took a picture of Lauren where I made the steam look like it was coming out her ear! Hahaha!
Me standing in the steam from a steam vent. It was pretty hot and it was like standing in a sauna.
Heading down into the rain forest to walk through a lava tube.
Gale, Mom and Lauren at the entrance of the lava tube.
That's me inside the tube holding up the ceiling to let my family and friends through before it collapses. Can't you see the lava coming down the tube behind me? Just kidding!
We drove through several lava fields from flows in the 1980s and early 1990s. Then we drove from the top of the ridge around 3000 feet in elevation down to sea level. You could look up at the side of the volcano and see where the lava spilled over the top and then flowed to the ocean. In this picture the road is closed because clearly the lava is covering the road.
After hiking back to the car we hurried into Hilo to catch our plane back to Honolulu. It was a busy full day, but always an adventure in Hawaii. Everyone was happy to have their juice cup on the flight home. This was the end of their trip. The ladies flew out early the next morning. I think it took them a couple days at home to recover from all the FUN they had in Hawaii. I'm glad I could show them a locals Hawaii and not just the touristy Hawaii. Thanks for coming to visit!