We’ve been on a roll with our anniversary trips. The first year was New York, the second was Paris, and this year is Honolulu. Each has been different, each has been amazing, but this is the first one that’s been warm; and we needed warm.

Utah has been snowing out of control (I blame global warming) and we needed a change of scene. We talked about several sunny options, but let’s be real, is there a better sunny destination than Hawaii? Add a couple of discount plane tickets the destination was decided. ✈️

Day 1 of the 4 day trip was perfect. We started by boating around Pearl Harbor and walking the beautiful memorial grounds. Pearl Harbor (and its place in history) is really well known to kids that grew up in the United States. History class always covered dates, speaches, and significant characters at that moment in the war, but they never really captured the emotion of that place.

The harbor really isn’t that big and the military base isn’t far from residential areas of the city. Walking the grounds really drove home the shock and personal offense that everyone felt when the harbor was attacked. Of course it was a strategic location, but it really felt so quiet and unassuming.

After sailing around the harbor and getting some breakfast we were ready for some adventure. Because we only had 1 day on the south of the island Diamond Head State Monument was our obvious choice.

I don’t know what is typical, but our hike began in a parking lot at the base of the crater. Diamond Head was swarming with people and the parking lot had a 30 minute wait just to park. Rather than wait, we decided that the 0.5 mile from the base to the trailhead was the better option. Once in the crater we wasted no time buying a couple Dole Whips. For those that haven’t been to Hawaii or Disneyland, just buy one and thank me later.

With our blood pumping full of fresh sugar we set off up the 1.5 mile trail to the look out point. The paved trail was quick and easy to climb and provided natural views of the island in almost all directions. The 560 foot elevation gain and 150+ stairs won’t be for everyone, but if you can manage it the view of the city is worth the climb.

Bunkers and a navigational lighthouse act as the tourist lookout at the summit. The entire crater and south shore of the island are visible from the summit, making one of the most picturesque views I’ve ever experienced. One warning for those that make it to the top: strap your hat down. It gets windy at the top and if your hat goes, there’s no catching it!

Obviously we didn’t fly all the way from Utah to spend 1 day in Hawaii, but when we started organizing the pictures and videos from the trip we realized that we need multiple posts to tell the full story. Next time you hear from us it’ll be on the North Shore and then on Maui!