Our Hawaiian Vacation

  • Aloha Vaca 2013 | Part 2

hard to believe that the trip we had been looking forward to for so long is over! I mentioned in the “part one” post that this wasn’t really a “Lay on the beach all day” type of vacation. We SAW a lot and we DID a lot! I mean, when are we going to be back in Oahu, Hawaii again?! Not anytime soon. This was a once in a lifetime type of trip. Two young couples with a week to explore an amazing island…it doesn’t get much better than that! We had an absolute BLAST and we fit as much as we possibly could into every single day! We’re so thankful that we have such awesome friends that make great travel buddies!

Josh and Mandy had the same desire to go and “do” stuff during our time in Oahu instead of just hanging out by the pool all day. The temperature ranged from 70-85 depending on the day and the rain only came through in 15 minute spurts. It was the perfect week to visit! The house where we stayed was in a gorgeous location and the home owner (Derek) had lived there for 20+ years and he gave us GREAT advice on where to spend our time. We learned a lot about the island and the culture from Derek. One specific thing that he mentioned was that we needed to leave EARLY to get to Pearl Harbor if we wanted tickets. So on day three, we got up at 5am and headed to the harbor! We made it just in time to get tickets for the 12:45pm tour. That left us with a few hours to explore….


Pearl harbor at sunrise! We grabbed our tickets and then headed out to explore!

Pali Lookout! 

Nice boys…

Do you see “Punch Bowl Crater”?! 

City of Honolulu behind us! 


Then we hiked to the top of Diamond Head!

Love this one!

Back to Pearl Harbor!

The Arizona is still leaking oil! 

And then we had some time to kill before our ATV adventure that afternoon!

So naturally, we took jumping pictures.

My personal favorite.

Chinaman’s Hat! We hiked that the next day! 

Kualoa Ranch! Let the 4Wheeling begin!

These next few pictures are iPhone photos! I couldn’t drive a 4wheeler and shoot with my MarkIII at the same time! :) Not the cutest picture in the world… but I like it. We were so excited!!

LOST anyone?! DHARMA!!

The LOST sub! 

This was one of our FAVORITE adventures!!! Special thanks to our tour guide Mark who took a ton of pictures of us! You want to know how to get a good tip? Offer to take group pictures of us! :)


Gosh this was so much fun!!

Next day! Shrimp Truck stop! 

And then we were off to our kayaking adventure to Chinaman’s Hat! A friend of Josh and Mandy’s told us to contact his dad because he lives on the island. We spent a whole afternoon with Dave at his amazing home on the water! 

We kayaked with him to Chinaman’s Hat…. and then he started to CLIMB it! There are no official paths… you just climb and grab rocks and hope that you don’t slip! I felt so legit!  Panoramic view!

An awesome little hidden beach! 

He has always loved caves…


I mean come on!! Doesn’t even look real!

Love this!!

Sweet Dave!! He is such an amazing guy with awesome stories and a huge heart! … And he loves Mountain Dew… if you can’t tell:)

His backyard!! No big deal.

Next day! We made a visit to the Buddhist Temple. Really impressive! ….

But our favorite part was feeding the birds. haha Mandy LOVES birds and yet they only went to Michael at first. haha

There we go! 

Feeding the fish!

PEACOCKS!!! I love them! 

And he doesn’t… bahahahah.

Funny story… the peacock walked up to Mandy and so we fluffed her dress at him… and he bowed down!!!


Snorkeling time!!

Again, iPhone pics! 

We saw sea turtles, parrot fish (my favorite), an eel and more other amazing creatures! This was another FAVORITE day!! 

We made some pitstops by the coast! Pirates of the Caribbean wasn’t filmed in the Caribbean… it was filmed here:) haha

Some other sites from our road trips…

The end!! We have one more post coming soon to wrap up this Hawaiian series! 

25 Comments Personal, Travels
  1. Anna reply


  2. Amanda reply

    You should hear me right now… “Nathan… when can we go to Hawaii!!!!????” It’s just gorgeous!

  3. Christy Tyler reply

    Ahhh! this has me missing Hawaii so much! LOVE it!

  4. Shelley Hohe reply

    So beautiful!! I am 41, live on the west coast and still never been to Hawaii. I HATE flying. So glad they now have cruses from SF to Hawaii now…that is my husbands and my next trip :) If michael loves caves you should visit Oregon they have some amazing caves there :) Thanks for sharing!!

  5. Kat reply

    GAH so, so pretty!!!!!

  6. Urška Majer reply

    This looks like such an amazing trip!

  7. Tiffany Heidenthal reply

    These are awesome pictures! I’m always too paranoid to lug my camera around with me. You should do a post about how to manage that! Even the iPhone pictures… weren’t you swimming when you took some of those!?

  8. Meagan reply

    Yay!!! so glad you guys got to see so much and had a blast!!! these are so beautiful!!!

  9. Kimber Wassenberg reply

    Great photos! That water is crazy amazing…and it looks like you guys had so much fun!!

  10. Gail reply

    This trip looks AMAZING!!!!

  11. Kristina W. reply

    Oh yay!!! I’m so glad there’s another Hawaii post because I am loving these! Oahu looks so incredible! I have to go there.

  12. Emily reply

    I could have scrolled for days! Wonderful pictures! Such an amazing vacation! Tiffany – I wondered the same thing! I would be too scared to bring my camera with me! How do you do it Katelyn?!?

  13. Kristen Burtch reply

    That is amazing! way to Capture such an amazing trip! I loved your friends stripped dress! <#

  14. Rebekah Hoyt reply

    It looks like you guys had an action-packed adventure! beautiful pictures!

  15. Rebekah Carter reply

    Those pictures with the birds are awesome b/c of the expressions on everyone’s faces, especially the one of the little boy with the peacock.

  16. Sydni Jackson reply

    Oh my gosh this is AMAZING!!! Your photos are the best!! My two fave pics of this post though are the one of y’all in the corn frames, and the pano of Chinaman’s hat – incredible!

  17. Whitney reply

    My favorite, favorite, favorite island! I love Oahu. these pictures we’re great!! i can’t believe that in the many times i’ve been, there’s so many places in your pictures i still haven’t seen… Time to go back… :)

  18. Kate reply

    SPEECHLESS!! I’ve always wanted to travel to hawaii…and these pictures confirm my interest in going! Katelyn—beautiful pics as always XO

  19. Annetta reply

    Beautiful!! What a wonderful trip you had!

  20. lily reply

    thank you for sharing, this was beautiful. you look so cute in all the pics too :)

  21. Sarah Beth Tapanes reply

    I always LOVE your vacation posts- So many gorgeous pictures!

  22. Michelle Cross reply

    Awww you guys are just the cutest. Ever. Love these pictures and love YOU!!

  23. katie reply

    I am so glad there’s another post!!! love love love love everything you got to see! A cousin of mine lives in hawaii and I can’t wait to visit some day!!!

  24. Katie reply

    Love this!! I really want to go to hawaii even more now…and I’m also really impressed at how you take so many beautiful pictures when you’re on vacation…I never do and I always regret it!

  25. I’ve actually | Virginia Wedding Photographer | Katelyn James Photography reply

    […] started off our year in HAWAII with Josh and Mandy! Trip of a LIFETIME!!!  Our friends Buddy and Jill came to us in spring 2013 […]

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