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After the long day yesterday, we planned a “down” day today – nothing specifically planned. We woke leisurely (well, leisurely for us, at least) and were downstairs in search of coffee just after 8AM. The line at the coffee shop in the hotel was long and didn’t seem to be moving too quickly, so we headed out to the strip. The next closest also had a good sized line, so we opted for our “secret” spot inside the Waikiki Shopping Center. A small line that was moving quickly, and we soon had coffee and breakfast food in hand. As we’d already ventured outside and onto the strip, we decided to wander down a few streets we’d been meaning to visit. 

We wandered around the side streets near the hotel, then made a trip to the UPS Store so D. could ship items home. (Her Christmas shopping is done, I think.  I have made a very large dent in mine.) We opted for lunch at Duke’s. We have grown to like that place! This time we ate in the dining room, and had a beautiful view of Diamond Head. 

With no other plans for the afternoon, we set off exploring again. One of the stores we passed had license plates lining the stairs and walls up to the store.                                                                               

We walked further off the strip and found some fun little gift shops, including one that sold sorbets and gelato. Pineapple coconut gelato?  Don’t mind if I do!

There are a lot of fun little shops and buildings once you get off the main street in Waikiki.


A trip back to our hotel to drop off purchases and figure out the plan, if any, for the remainder of the day. We rode up to our room in an overcrowded, overheated elevator, which did not help my energy level. Before I knew it, and despite my initial efforts, I was soon taking a short afternoon nap.  D. went out to explore further while I caught some Z’s. 

We knew the hula show at Kuhio Park was on again tonight, and we both definitely wanted to catch it. A quick text to friends, and we had plans to meet up at the park. On our way we passed the Moana Hotel, as we have several times this week. I had missed this sign until tonight.


We arrived early with our tatami mats and managed to get front row seats for the show. Definitely better than last week’s when we sat on the beach wall!

We were treated to another beautiful sunset before the show started. 

Tonight was a trio and one dancer – Joan “Aunty Pudgie”Young and Puamelia. It was a very interactive show with the audience, and very educational, too.

The traditional conch shell blowing at the start of the show.

Joan “Aunty Pudgie” Young

Hula Kahiko – ancient hula performed with chant and traditional instruments.

Hula ‘auana – modern hula danced to popular songs. She is using ‘Ulī ulī, feathered gourd rattles


A fantastic show, and they even sang one of my favorite songs. You can see the video here.  

A walk through the farmers’ market at the hotel across the street after the show where we purchased banana lumpias, fruit for tomorrow’s adventure, and a few gifts. We walked to Kings Village where we’d walked earlier in the day, and I finally found my Hawaiian quilt. I had seen one earlier in the week in a different store, and when I went back today it was gone. I saw another possibiity earlier today, but it just wasn’t the Right One. The one in this store was perfect – just the right color, and a very traditional pattern. 

Next stop was a Japanese noodle restuarant for dinner, but the line was a bit long, and the restaurant rather tiny. We ended up back at the Hula Grill as there was no wait for a table, and we knew the food was good. Tonight I had the sashimi, and I was lucky enough to get a bite of opah (moonfish) shared with me. SO good!  D. and I shared a hula pie for dessert, said farewell to our friends (they depart tomorrow), and headed back to the room to call it a day. A final check of the pedometer says I hit 19,955 steps today. I debated walking in place for those extra 45 steps to make it an even 20,000, but it was close to midnight, and my feet screamed No! That, and I was distracted by hearing geckos on our lanai for the first time tonight.

The photo really doesn’t do it justice. It was 2.5 oz of the freshest ahi, seasoned to perfection.

Tomorrow we are off to Kailua Beach and Waimea Falls. Starting the day with some R&R (because we just need a bit more!) and some exploration in the afternoon. Hard to believe we have only two more days to see, do and eat everything we haven’t yet. Fortunately, that list is rather short.