We got settled in and decided to take a ride to a local supermarket to get some provisions since our villa had a full kitchen and dining room we decided to make dinner a few of the nights were there.
March 01, 2017
Today we had a helicopter ride scheduled to see the lava flow which we were lucky to see because they aren’t sure how long it’s going to flow. The helicopter ride was terrific the lush greenery, the beautiful waterfalls and seeing the lava flow was just fabulous. Once again we made a delicious dinner in our suite.
March 02, 2017
Today we just decided to drive around the island and do a little bit of hiking and a lot of sightseeing. One of the most amazing things that we ate was a Portuguese donut called Malasada. It was so good that I am still thinking about it today, and I will revisit the Big Island purposely to get it again. We had dinner at this local place at the Lava Lava Beach Club since we had to pack and get ready for our flight to Maui in the morning we didn’t want to hassle with making dinner again.
September 14th – 21st, 2013 September 7th – 14th, 2014 September 23rd – October 1st, 2016 February 23rd – February 28th, 2017
John and I have been to Oahu/Honolulu, Hawaii so far four times. We always stay at our Disney timeshare called Disney Aulani which is located in Ko Olina. The first time we were in Hawaii we visited Pearl Harbor, it was a very somber sight to see. The oil is still coming out of the USS Arizona ship. We also took a helicopter ride to get a bird’s eye view of fabulous Hawaii.
One of the evenings we took a sunset cruise which was nice they had food and drinks on board. I also got a chance to see my first green flash which was terrific.
One thing we love is food so we love to get recommendations from the show Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives and we try a different place everytime we are there. Another thing we like to do is try the food at all the different food trucks. There are so many various options and so far all of them have been good. Since I started the blog years after visiting Hawaii, I never wrote down which food trucks we visited I will take better notes. So far the one we love and visit each time we are there is Giovanni’s Shrimp Truck, and we get one serving of Spicy Shrimp and one with Garlic and Butter. You can’t go wrong with either cause both are delicious!
One great thing is that each time we have gone to Hawaii our good friends Nano & Mariya have met us there and we go hiking together, and we also took a dinner cruise that came complete with dancers. It was a great time! We have made long-lasting memories in Hawaii.
We started our journey from Florida to Zambia. After an 18 hour flight, we finally arrived in Johannesburg for one night our flight to Zambia is tomorrow morning. The Hilton Standton Hotel in Johannesburg (Joburg) was very nice we only spent one night there.
June 8, 2016
Today we woke up and got a taxi ride to the airport to officially start our Zambia Zambezi River adventure. We arrived in Zambia and took an unbelievable helicopter ride to my friend Tina’s river lodge. We flew into the gorge which was incredible it was an experience you couldn’t have had anywhere else. We flew over Victoria falls the view was breathtaking about twenty minutes later we arrived at Royal Chundu River Lodge. Upon our arrival to our river lodge we were greeted by Aggie & Hessah after a brief orientation we then boarded a boat for a short trip to our island lodge where Tina had set up our five days four-night stay and our chalet number four. We had lunch upon arrival and about two hours later we had a sunset cruise on the Zambezi River. After the cruise, we went back to our room to freshen up before going to dinner. When we got to our room we had a wonderful surprise at our room the tub on the deck was full of warm water waiting for us it was an unbelievable experience to be in the jungle and while bathing you hear the grunts of hippos is something city folk aren’t used to. After our amazing and relaxing soak in the tub we headed to the main area for our dinner we were very tired from jet lag.
June 9, 2016
The next morning we had a rough time with waking up at 5 AM to go on our first adventure, but we managed. We took the boat back to the River Lodge to meet up with our driver for the day. It was so cold on the boat that we nearly froze to death. It’s cold in the morning and by the afternoon it heats up and it’s much warmer. We drove about an hour away tomorrow to Mukuni Big 5. The first part was an elephant ride for 45 minutes which was fun. We saw what they normally do when they are in their natural habitat. Almost every step they took they would eat from the trees in the pathway.
After the elephant ride, we were introduced to two seven-year-old female cheetahs. Suzanne and Lulu were their names. At first, John and I were both nervous because even though they were raised from babies with humans, they are animals who belong in the wild and have natural instincts to hunt and kill for survival. One cool thing is that cheetahs are the only large cat that purrs so hearing the cat purr made us comfortable because you knew they were ok with you around them. After about half an hour we took them for a stroll in the bush.
After we were done walking the cheetah, it was time for them to get exercise. There was a lure attached to a pulley that the cheetahs chased while being timed and afterwards they got a chunk of meat as a treat.
The next adventure was the king of the jungle a 22-month-old female and male lion siblings. The lion’s name was Milo, and the lioness’ name was Dina. This experience was very different than the cheetahs because they don’t purr they are very quiet. The way we knew they were ok with us was by their body language. After about 40 minutes petting and walking with the two lions we were taken to meet two seven week old cubs
They were so cute and playful. We even got to feed the cubs milk from a baby bottle. Overall we had an unbelievable, once-in-a-lifetime experience at Mikuni Big 5.
Our next stop on today’s day of harrowing adventure was to see one of the seven wonders of the world Victoria Falls. The first part was an incredibly wet walk around the falls which was pretty amazing. The sheer force of the water flowing down and shooting back up was like a monsoon rainstorm even though we had ponchos on our bathing suits were soaked.
John decided to be daring and swim in part of the falls which is called Angel’s pool. It’s pretty close to the edge which is crazy. After swimming in the falls, we took a picture while sitting on a rock right at the edge. One false move and we were going over. Luckily the guide told us they hadn’t lost anybody.
We then started our one hour journey back to Royal Chundu, and once we arrived, we had a lovely early dinner and then went to our chalet for our nightly soak tub and right to bed.
June 10, 2016
We woke up at 5:30 AM and took the same cold boat ride to the River Lodge to meet up with our driver for our safari guide to walk with the white rhino. The beginning of the excursion was cold but as the day went on the sun warmed us up while walking through Mosi-O-Tunya Park looking for the Rhino. We finally found the rhino and her baby.
This was the only thing we were doing today, so we drove back to Royal Chundu on the way there we saw a herd of elephants crossing the street. They were the biggest elephants we ever saw and there was a baby with them as well. We arrived at the lodge just in time for the daily sunset cruise which we looked forward to every day. After the cruise, we went back to our chalet to soak in the tub and get ready for dinner.
One thing I found comforting about the lodge was every night after dinner we had a guard walk us back to our chalet with a flashlight and a taser because in the evening hippos come out of the water and onto the island to eat. They are known to kill more people than any other animal in Africa.
June 11, 2016
Today we decided to relax and hang out at the lodge after travelling so far and doing the excursions the past two days we needed to relax and unwind. After lunch we decided to participate in a four-hour private river safari it was quiet and very peaceful.
Unfortunately, we didn’t see much we saw some birds, a lot of baboons, two crocodiles and a family of hippos. After the River Safari, we relaxed on the deck of our chalet once again and read our books. We took some time out of our relaxation to take part in the sunset cruise luckily we enjoyed a private cruise, and after that, we decided to have dinner and then went back to our chalet and enjoy our warm bathe before going to bed.
June 12, 2016
We had such a great time on the river safari yesterday that we decided to participate in one early this morning.
The only thing that was an issue if you were doing anything early in the morning it was freezing for the first two hours, but as the sun came up, it became warmer which is pleasant. We followed our river safari with lunch and the sunset cruise, soak in the tub and dinner.
June 13, 2016
Today we woke up completely relaxed and ready to travel to the airport to catch a flight to Madagascar after a final drive down the unpaved road as the driver called it a free African massage we boarded our plane for our flight.
We took a brief 20-minute walk on the Glacier and got a short lesson about glaciers. It was the first time I ever walked on a Glacier and John’s second time. He said it was just as exciting as the first time.
When we arrived back on land we had plenty of time before we had to board the ship, so we decided to take a walk through the town and get a bite to eat. There is one thing you have while in Alaska you guessed it King Crab Legs. Every chance we had we ate them.
Today we took were supposed to take a ride on a helicopter but due to the bad weather, they canceled our flight. We decided to just walk around town and grab a bite to eat at one of the local restaurants.
Today we had a lovely scenic drive from Queenstown to Franz Josef Glacier we drove on Crown Range Road which had wonderful views of the valley. We saw a change in landscape and lifestyle while driving through. We saw lakes and farmlands with amazing mountain and valley views. We arrived and checked into our Bed & Breakfast called Westwood lodge which is owned and operated by a female named Kaz Gilmore. It was really cute it’s right by the village and has a great view of the Southern Alps. The next day we had a glacier hike. We drove to a secluded area and walked through the forest with a guide to a big open space where we proceeded to walk to the edge of the glacier which was about 1/2 mile walk. We had a helicopter ride to the do a glacier walk but the accident that happened in Queenstown made me nervous so we canceled the flight and decided to do the tour on foot.
Today we flew to Hamilton island to visit our friends Keith & Kerrie who live there full time. The island is unique most people get around on golf carts.The only people who drove cars were the people who worked for the island.
There are some really good restaurants and a lot of wallabies and at night or I should say at dusk there were hundreds of bats flying up in the sky. We found out that one person owns the island and therefore owns all the retail stores and the restaurants which is wild!
We took a helicopter to The Great Barrier Reef the ride was amazing it looked like another planet.We saw Whitsunday Island and the famous Heart Reef. Snorkeling and scuba diving is world renowned many people come from all over the world just for that.
The next day our friend Keith took us to Hamilton Island Golf Club it was one of the best courses we ever played on. We had to take a boat to the island where the golf course was. Mostly every tee had a view of the water.