All posts by Evan Fa

A Weekend of Wanderlust Oahu on Turtle Bay Resort

What is life truly about? Is it about being happy? Or is it about finding purpose? Wanderlust, a festival dedicated to helping individuals find their “true north,” is set to re-visit Turtle Bay within the coming days, from Thursday, February 23rd through Sunday, February 26th. Each year on the resort, Wanderlust draws together a deep reservoir of “yoga and meditation instructors, musical performers, speakers, artists and chefs for a transformational retreat” allowing attendees the chance “to explore and connect with [their] life’s purpose.”

Yoga

While many may not consider themselves a yogi, or even tried yoga for that matter, yoga does provide some amazing benefits to its practitioners. One can improve his or her breathing, increase strength and flexibility, regulate metabolism and thus weight, as well as help heal an injury or even increase athletic performance. In this sense, yoga can be for everyone. That being said, there are tons of ways to practice yoga, and Wanderlust is a great way to get a start at it.

Meditation

Whether one refers to it as meditation, priming, or introspective thinking, many of the most successful, high performance individuals practice some sort of meditation ritual on a regular basis. Whether one presently does it or not, with the long list of trainers that will be in attendance this weekend, this is a great opportunity to give it a go.

Music

As the cliche says, “Music is the language of the soul.” It truly is. It has the ability to affect one’s deepest feelings and emotions, for good or for bad. Wanderlust has a long list of local to national artists on tap to provide the good … a renewed soundtrack to one’s life. Check the listings – List of Musical Artists at Wanderlust – to see if any of these tickle your fancy.

Speakers 

Opening one’s ears, heart and soul is a recipe for finding inspiration, especially from experts that have studied and practice their purpose. Wanderlust has a long list of speakers that will inform and motivate attendees to live better and aim their lives toward that “true north.”

Food and Art

“We are what we eat.” So food is of greatest importance. At Wanderlust, chefs and vendors will provide tasty Organic options that will put attendees in closest proximity with nature and their true north.

Transformation comes one step and a time. When one consciously decides to make a difference in his or her own life, he or she is better able to embrace the change that comes as a result of it. Wanderlust is a wonderful opportunity to tap into a side that is often times overlooked or undervalued—one’s purpose.

For those traveling to Wanderlust from around Oahu, the outer islands, or elsewhere, Turtle Bay Rentals on the Turtle Bay Resort offers luxurious options for any Wanderlust attendee to stay. The various condos accommodate smaller and even larger numbers of travelers all within footsteps of the activities going down. Feel free to look at the various condos and availability for the specific festival dates.

3 Beautiful Beaches to Hang Out on the North Shore of Oahu

Oahu, while it is not the largest island within the Hawaiian island chain, is referred to as the main island. One reason is because the state’s capital, Honolulu, is located on the island. It also happens to be the most densely populated, staking claim to the highest population, of these eight Polynesian islands despite the fact that it is actually the third largest with the chain. Hawaii island (referred to as the Big Island) being the largest with Maui the second largest in the chain. All of this being said, with all the unique beauty and attractions Oahu has to offer, it is no wonder why it is the main island.

Of course, let it be said that metropolitan Honolulu is a busy city. A big city like unto any other metropolitan area within the continental United States. One where there is tons of traffic, industry and commerce—all of that which is not exactly synonymous with what most people would fantasize about when it comes to the vacationing in a Hawaiian paradise. Rather, one dreams of beautiful sandy beaches with blue skies and waters as the backdrop. These things do very much exist in a big way on Oahu, and they are only a short drive away from the hustle of Honolulu.

As one makes his or her way out of Honolulu and into the country, specifically to the Turtle Bay Rentals on the Turtle Bay Resort on the North Shore, one discovers the true meaning of Hawaii. With the majestic Ko’olau mountains to ones back, and the pristine Pacific ocean to the front, he or she will be in the paradise that only dreams are made of. Of course, if one is looking for a unique place to relax on the sand away from the typical crowds that frequent the beaches and shorelines along the North Shore, below are just a few to consider while staying on the resort.

Laniakea Beach

Famously known, and even infamously known by locals, as Turtle Beach to visitors, Laniakea is absolutely a wonderful place to relax on the sand, surf, and, of course, get in touch with nature by viewing the turtles that frequently swim near shore. In order to visit Laniakea, one recommendation is to get their sooner in the day rather than later in order to avoid traffic as well as grab a parking space across from the beach access. And once one gets there then walk west on the beach towards Haleiwa in order to find some seclusion. Not to mention, it would be good idea to avoid the place on the weekends since that is typically when both visitors as well as locals make their way up to the North Shore to enjoy the country.

Log Cabins

Known more as a surf spot, Log Cabins is actually one of the last remaining empty areas to relax on the beach on the North Shore. Located in between Rockpiles and Ke iki, it is a more calm area to admire the fantastic surf and beauty of the famous North Shore. One will need to park along Kamehameha Highway just across the street and down the road from the skatepark. Make sure to avoid “No Parking” areas to avoid getting cited by the police.

Kekela Beach

As a frequent camping place for local people on the weekends and holidays, Kekela Beach (located within Kokololio Beach Park) is a prime location for some isolated exposure to Oahu’s true majestic beauty on the east side of the island. While the tradewinds (onshore winds) blow the majority of the year, when the winds are light or Kona (offshore winds), Kekela Beach is rivaled by few other places within the islands when it comes to natural beauty.

5 Best Ways to Spend a Rainy Day Around Turtle Bay

Few things put as much of a damper on vacation as stormy weather. When one dreams of her Hawaiian vacation, more than likely it consists of sunny skies, warm weather, tasty food, good company, and new experiences. Surely cloudy skies, rainy weather, and any other thing hindering the ideal day (and perfect vacation) are not a part of the picture. Yet it is Hawaii; and Hawaii is lush and green because, in fact, it does rain a lot. But, for practical purposes, what does one do when the weather does not go her way while vacationing with Turtle Bay Rentals on the Turtle Bay Resort? Instead of hiding inside the walls of the condo all day, venture out and make the most of it all.

While adding a layer of shade to that tan may not be an option when it is raining, there are plenty of ways to make the most of the rainy day on Oahu. One just needs to get a little more creative. Frankly, one just needs to accept and embrace the weather as well as one’s inner adventurer. Below are the 5 Best Ways to Spend a Rainy Day Around Turtle Bay.

1. Hike to Kawela Bay

While hiking in the rain in Hawaii typically means slipping around in the mud, a hike to Kawela Bay from Turtle Bay Rentals is both short and well shielded by the foliage. Of course, choose the route wisely because there are muddier routes than others. So either rough it bare footed or with some slipper (or sandals).

2. Breakfast at Ted’s Bakery

The good ole famous Ted’s Bakery is an iconic Hawaii food establishment. A family owned and operated location with a long history stretching back over a half century, Ted’s Bakery offers anything from doughnuts and pastries to plate lunches and sandwiches. Oh, and lest anyone forget, its famous chocolate Haupia pie is a perfect way to satisfy that sweet tooth.

3. A Quick Dip at Ehukai Beach Park

While it may not be the perfect day to soak in the rays, who said swimming around is off limits? Not a soul. Depending on the surf, Ehukai Beach Park is a perfect location to hop in for a swim. With showers and bathrooms on site, Ehukai Beach Park is a prime location to rinse off that sand and salt before zipping off to the next adventure.

4. Lunch or Dinner at The Elephant Truck

Who would have ever thought Thai food out of a truck could be so good? Well, it is so good. The Elephant Truck by Shark’s Cove on the North Shore of Oahu offers a variety of Thai options from coconut curries to pad thai to papaya salad. And considering the location, The Elephant Truck is both reasonable as well as generous in portion.

5. A Movie at Laie Palms Cinemas

A movie and popcorn is a great way to wind down after a day in the rain. Granted that Laie Palms Cinemas is roughly ten minutes away from Turtle Bay Rentals (the next closest theaters are around forty-five minutes), it is a small yet convenient location for taking in the latest Hollywood flick. While there are only two theaters on location, there are plenty of showings throughout the day depending on whether one is looking for a matinee or an evening movie.

A Perfect Day of Kona Winds at Oahu’s Pounders Beach

When one thinks of paradise beaches on the island of Oahu, he or she traditionally envisions crystal blue and emerald waters with coarse sand encompassing the shoreline. And, of course, the sun piercing and bronzing any skin tone to perfection. Typically such beach days are found on the west facing coastlines, such as the North Shore, but on those rare occasions the east facing coastlines are the prize.

For those that may not realize, wind is the big factor to weather, geography, and ultimately the place a vacationer should head to for the day. The predominate winds within the Hawaiian islands are the tradewinds, which blow from east to west. Hence giving meaning to the terms windward side (east facing coastline), where the winds blow onshore from the ocean to land, and the leeward side (west facing coastline), where the winds blow offshore from the land to the ocean. For these reasons, the windward side receives the blunt of wind and rain and is thus more wet and green while the leeward side receives less wind and rain and is thus more dry and desert-like. Of course, this typical wind pattern occasionally changes and does the opposite of the typical patterns. These winds are referred to as Kona winds.

Kona winds refer to the opposite of the typical tradewind pattern. Instead of winds blowing from east to west, Kona winds flow from west to east. Kona winds indeed make for the most pristine conditions along the windward side of the island. What is normally a windy onshore blown mess transforms into the postcard-esque paradise that every vacationer is truly chases for at heart.

One suggestion for beach goers, especially those staying with Turtle Bay Rentals on the Turtle Bay Resort, is to head to Pounders Beach in the little town of Laie on the windward side. With a one of a kind view of the famous rock cliff to the south of the parking lot in contrast to the even more famous Ko’olau mountain range, Pounders offers a perfect refuge from the crowds in addition to being a perfect place to stretch out the towel with the family and swim around in the shorebreak. What is typically a bodyboarding and bodysurfing haven for the youth and adults along the windward side of the island when there are tradewinds is typically not during the Kona winds. Nevertheless, be careful if the waves are a little larger as the waves tend to be very powerful and dangerous to novices in the ocean.

Pounders Beach, formally known as Laie Beach Park, is a short fifteen minute drive from the resort. While parking and showers are found on site, there are not any bathrooms or lifeguards on duty. Of recently, Pounders Beach has become known to visitors for the trampoline to the north along the old pier pilings, where cargo was once brought into the bay years and years ago. If the trampoline is still in use at the time of writing this, then by all means go enjoy it. Either way, soak up the beautiful sand and sea at Pounders on this next round of Kona winds.

HI BBQ—An Authentic BBQ Experience on the North Shore

With a wide variety of food stops both on and within close proximity of Turtle Bay Rentals on the Turtle Bay Resort, few food stops provide as unique and as authentic of an experience as HI BBQ in the small town of Kahuku. Only a few minute drive south of the resort, HI BBQ is no run of the mill type of place. Nor is it exactly the most likely of places for vacationers to venture off the highway for a meal. That being said, that does not mean vacationers should not. In fact, any vacationer fond (or even those not so fond of bbq) definitely needs to put HI BBQ on the list of stops to make for some grub.

 

HI BBQ is located on the mountain side (mauka) of Kamehameha Highway just north of the town of Kahuku overlooking the famous shrimp farms. (Check out a recent blog that reviews Romy’s Kahuku Prawns and Shrimp if one is looking for shrimp as well as some other local food stops within the area.) Take the paved road on the mountain side of Kamehameha Highway—Cane Haul 7—just north of the shrimp farms. The windy road will wrap around and lead to some horse stables, a farming warehouse, and the windmills. That is where one will find the HI BBQ food truck.

HI BBQ specializes in three smoked bbq delicacies—brisket, pulled pork, and short ribs. HI BBQ offers these in plates with a choice of sides ranging from their signature Siracha coleslaw or house-made sweet apple coleslaw, and BACON (!!!) brown sugar infused baked beans. And, of course, for those looking to truly dig in with their canines, HI BBQ offers an All The Things plate combining all three of their smoked meats.

While HI BBQ offers a slice of southern bbq unlike anywhere else on the island, it also offers a unique experience that absolutely matches the true Hawaiian country vibes on the east side of Oahu. HI BBQ’s food truck is located right in a wide open grassy space isolated from any other food establishment with a view that is not easily rivaled. Thus making this the perfect location to bring a family (or, as a matter of fact, a date), particularly kids and young ones to pet the horses, view the waves crashing in the distance on the beaches of Kahuku, and watch the sunset behind the windmills on the mountain side.

And even if one is not fond of bbq, HI BBQ’s location is still worth driving up to for all of the reasons just mentioned. Considering the hustle and bustle of the shrimp trucks as well as the food trucks both in Kahuku and by Shark’s Cove on the North Shore, anyone that is looking for a little isolation, some horses grazing their domain, and a view that is hard to compete with, HI BBQ is a must. And, of course, the food … because it is not every day that one can find true southern style bbq in Polynesia.